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Helen I. Gray


Sunrise: November 1, 1932

Sunset: September 8, 2021

Helen Ina Gray passed away peacefully on Wednesday, September 8, 2021 at the age of 88, with the love of her family surrounding her. She forever touched the lives of all who came to know her. Our beloved Queen Helen affectionately known as “Ma” was born to the late Annie Saddler and Charlie Spencer on November 1, 1932 in Swan Quarter, North Carolina.

Helen received her formal education at Booker T. Washington in Norfolk, Virginia. She strongly advocated for education as the key to a promising future and encouraged her fifteen children to see Higher Education. She retired from the Norfolk Public Schools System after 32 years. Helen also served as an active member of the Eastern Star.

Helen valued her family and anytime that she could spend with them, she looked forward to holidays, family reunions, and birthdays. Helen enjoyed cooking large meals and listening to music with those she loved. She was preceded in death by late husband, Robert O. Cooper; one brother, William Murray; four daughters, Barbara Lynch Mogot, Theresa Jones (Jessie), Sharon Johnson (Renay), and Edna Gilliam (Abraham); one beloved aunt, Mary Whitaker; one granddaughter, Adrienne Jones; one grandson, Tevin Jones; three great-grandsons, Fataj Cooper, Travion Peterson, and Wyleek Eddy.

Helen leaves to cherish her precious memories is her husband, Edward Gray; three sons, Robert Cooper (Alvenetta), William Cooper, and Ormand Cooper (Keala); eight daughters, Rosa Lee Evans (Melvin), Emma Baker (Carl), Romedias Rivers (Stevens), Regina Thomas (Randell), Janel Allen (Dennis), Helen Cooper, Tonya Cooper –White (Luther) and Reshela Cooper; two brothers, Charlie Henry Spencer, Jr. and Otis Spencer; fifty-eight grandchildren, two hundred and twenty great- grandchildren, fifty-one great- great grandchildren, one great- great- great grandchild, Jayden Massey; three step-children, Edward Gray Jr., Bridgette Gray and Renee Gray; two god-children, Micaiah Cooper and Vonnesha Cooper; one special niece, Jacqueline McCain; one best friend, Henrietta Richardson and one grand dog, Coco Cooper and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.

Viewing Thursday, September 16, 2021 2:00pm - 6:00pm Metropolitan Funeral Service 120 W. Berkley Avenue Norfolk, VA 23523 Service WATCH SERVICE LIVE ONLINE Friday, September 17, 2021 11:00am Metropolitan Funeral Service Berkley Chapel Interment Roosevelt Memorial Park 1101 Campostella Road Chesapeake, VA 23320 *Masks Required*

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Condolences(10)

  1. reply
    Bessie Pender says

    To the Gray and Cooper Family,
    I couldn’t believe that my friend whom I worked with for many years at Larrymore Elementary School, gained her heavenly wings the other day. My heart aches with pain, however I have joy knowing that she knew the Lord and willing to help anybody that was i need. Rest In Glory Child of God

  2. reply
    Patricia Denise Lee Ingram says

    Condolences and prayers to Doc and All of the Gray Family. Helen is absent from this earthly body and being ever present with the Savior, Jesus Christ. Weeping may endure for a night but oh what joy comes in that great getting up morning. Stay strong and keep the faith.

  3. reply
    Patricia Lee Ingram says

    Condolences and prayers to Doc and All of the Gray Family. Helen is absent from this earthly body and being ever present with the Savior, Jesus Christ. Weeping may endure for a night but oh what joy comes in that great getting up morning. Stay strong and keep the faith.

  4. reply
    Steven L Rivers says

    Rest in heaven mother n law.. the lord has greeted you with his angels.. you may now look down upon us without anymore pain from the past.. always love you BIG TYME COOPER GRAY

    THE RIVERS FAMILY

  5. reply
    Emma Jean (Cooper) Baker says

    Love, you Mommy I’ll carry you in my heart always

  6. reply
    Emma Baker says

    This is the lord pray that my Mom taught me when I was a little girl and now this how I say it The Lord is my shepherd I shall not want he make it her to lay down He resort her soul for she’s always with me her cup no longer running over for she’ll always with me she’s say she’s my rod she’ll converted me now with him as she my Mother walk threw the valley of death she no longer feel no pain he’s protecting her he’s her rod as she’s enter the valley of death she no longer feel no pain for she’s gone to be with him surely nothing but goodness and now she lives in the house of the lord and with here family for ever amen and amen 🙏🏾 Love always and forever your daughter Emma Baker

  7. reply
    Tonya Cooper says

    I love you forever I will carry you on with all the precious memories I carry within. rejoice in heaven my sweet QUEEN until we meet again I love you

  8. reply
    Kisha Jones says

    I was so sad to hear of your passing. I pray for peace and comfort during this difficult time and I offer my deepest condolences to everyone.

  9. reply
    Martin Ingram says

    It is so sad to know my friend is gone home to God, but she’s in a better place. My sincere condolences go out to Doc and family.

  10. reply
    Quinn Lyton says

    My sincerest thoughts and condolences to all of Miss Helen’s family. May God guide you through your period of mourning and give you peace and comfort.

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