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Joyce Essie Durand Gray—wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, and friend—
transitioned from her earthly home into her heavenly home on Saturday, November 11,
2017. Born in New Orleans, Louisiana, on August 31, 1935, to Ernest Durand Sr. and Doretha Smith Durand, she was the sister of Doretha Marie Durand Henry and Ernest Durand Jr., both of whom preceded her into heaven. In addition to her parents and siblings, Joyce Durand Gray was the granddaughter of John and Marie Durand of Walker Town, LA and Daniel and Essie Smith of New Orleans, LA. Mrs. Gray is survived by her husband of 65 years, Raymond Gray Sr. They were childhood sweethearts meeting at McCarthy Elementary School and marrying after finishing Joseph S. Clark Senior High School.

Mrs. Gray was the mother of seven children including Shelita Gray Bourgeois (Kenneth G.
Boutte Sr.), Wanda Gray Bailey (Conrad M. Bailey Sr.), Ramona Ann Gray (formerly Mrs.
Dunn), Raymond Gray, Jr. (Lisa Brown Gray), Darrell Rene Gray, Troy Durand Gray Sr., and Joyce Dionne Gray Davis (Bernel Davis Jr.). Her 14 grandchildren are Denise Bourgeois, Steven Gray, Conrad Bailey Jr., Julian (Krystal Deal Dunn) and Damon Dunn, India Gray, Daniel, David (Autumn Love Gray), and Jonathan Gray; Jade, Blake and Troy Gray Jr., and Duran and Bernel Davis III. Her five great-grand children are Leah Johnson; Chloe andZoie Bailey; Damon Dunn Jr., and Brooklyn Dunn.

Relatives and friends of the family, also Pastors, Officers and Members of Amozion Baptist Church are invited to attend the funeral services at 11:00 AM on Friday, November 17, 2017 at Amozion Baptist Church, 907 Deslonde Street, New Orleans, LA. Visitation will be from 10:00 AM until 11:00 AM. Interment: Mount Olivet Cemetery. Arrangements are by D.W. Rhodes Funeral Home. Please visit www.rhodesfuneral.com to share online condolences