Grafton, N.H. — Barbara Jane (Robohm) Gray, age 80, died April 9, 2013, at Dartmouth Hitchcock Memorial Hospital from complications following hip surgery. She was born February 9, 1933, at Rockville Centre, Long Island, N.Y., to Henry and Viorine (Steers) Robohm. She lived most of her childhood in Abington, Mass., and graduated from Thayer Academy in Braintree in 1950. She graduated from Radcliffe College in 1954 and four days later married Chester L. Gray, Jr. Barb and Chet adored each other for a lifetime. They had three sons, Chester L. III (Skip), Scott D. and Evan W. She took her master’s degree in education from Bridgewater State College, and for many years taught 3rd and 4th grades in Steward Elementary School in Topsfield, Mass., while living in nearby Boxford. She was a marvelous, natural-born teacher; next to mothering, teaching was her greatest pride. Her school kids loved her, and enjoyed visiting the old farmhouse in New Hampshire. Later, while living in Stamford, Conn., she taught English as a second language.
In August 1991, during the torrential rain of Hurricane Bob, the Grays moved to a renovated 18th century farmhouse in Grafton, N.H., purchased from her father in 1971. This gave Barbara an opportunity to ply her skills to decorate and beautify the vintage home throughout. For the next several years they traveled the world extensively to much of the U.S., and to many sites in Canada, Mexico, Central America, Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia, New Zealand, and South America. In recent years health concerns limited her travel. Nevertheless, she kept her kind disposition and keen wit. She doted on her grandchildren, and was thrilled with chatting with them on the phone. She reveled in her loving family and many friends. She loved reading, and read extensively, with a reading “Life List” running to hundreds of titles, many selected for her by her good friends at the Grafton Town Library. Barbara loved opera and ballet. She enjoyed cooking, crossword puzzles, Red Sox and Patriots games, Jeopardy and Wheel of Fortune.
Barbara is survived by her husband and three sons; by her sister and boon companion, Viorine Valicenti; her older brother, Henry Robohm; by her beloved grandchildren, Molly Gray, Brian and Michael Gray and their mother, Eileen Raicht-Gray; by her daughters-in-law Margaret and Erika; her sister-in-law, Grace Robohm, and numerous nephews and nieces. She was predeceased by her parents, her younger brother Robert and his wife, Betsy Robohm, and sister-in-law Eda Robohm.
Barbara was a beautiful and classy lady, deeply loved by all who knew her. She is acutely missed and grieved here, but has been joyfully received in heaven.
ARRANGEMENTS: A memorial service of life celebration is planned for 2 p.m. on Saturday, May 11, at First Assembly of God, 3 Dolloff Ave., Beverly, MA, 01915. Call 978-927-1862 for more information. The family feels that if anyone wants to make a donation in Barbara’s memory, a gift to First Assembly of God at the above address, or any other worthy charity would be appreciated.