Wanda Hurt Gray, 89, of Ballinger passed away Monday, Nov. 4, 2019 in Ballinger.

She was born Dec. 14, 1929, to Johnny and Delsie (Buckmaster) Harper in Sherwood.  Wanda married Clint Hurt on July 31, 1946 in Tom Green County.  He preceded her in death on Nov. 21, 1988.  She was married to Frank Gray Nov. 14, 1997; he also preceded her in death on June 13, 2002. 

Wanda was also preceded in death by her parents; three of her brothers; one sister; her son, Bill Hurt; and daughters, Monica Rose and Elizabeth Harper Bennett.

She is survived by her children: her daughter, Sandra and husband Dwaine Hardy of Santa Anna, son, Kit and wife Debra Hurt of Ballinger, son, Mark Hurt of Ballinger, son, Johnny Hurt and wife Leta of Ballinger, and son ,Aron and wife Debbie Hurt of Rowena. She is also survived by brothers, Wendell Radford of Brownwood, and Bobby Radford of Kentucky; as well as 23 grandchildren, 34 great-grandchildren, and 2 great-great-grandchildren.

Wanda spent her life making the lives of everyone around her better, whether she realized it or not. This showed through her work as the activity director for Twilight Acres nursing facility for 8 years, and every day of her life spent with her large family. Walking through the threshold of her front door brought a comfort indescribable when the world outside often felt like it has none to offer. This comfort was extended to family friends as well and was often only met with one question from her, that being “what are their names” so she could know them as well. When we would take too much advantage of her kindness and stay up all night with spirited discussions, she would rarely complain, likely owed to her unnatural patience, and always offered breakfast in the morning with a smile to anyone who wanted it. If you listen closely, you can still hear the echo of joy reverberate off the walls of her home.

The good may die young, but the great outlive many. As Wanda once sarcastically told her doctor “you mean I have to die one day?” If you ask her though, she wasn't funny. She taught us to love without conditions, forgive when it is hard, and let go of the poison a grudge brings. She was rich when she passed away with milk in the fridge, and with a group of people forever touched by her heart.

She was shelter when you had none, safety when in peril, and love when you felt none. The light of her example lives on in the lives of all she touched, and cuts through any darkness left in her wake. Four generations of her family were lucky enough to have known her and the depth of her love, and along with countless friends, we will carry on her spirit.