Lawrence James Gray PhD, age 63 of Salem, passed away on June 10, 2017. Larry was born on September 28, 1953 in Wichita Kansas to E. Virginia Gray and Lawrence Freemont Gray. He married his best friend Margaret Lee Dodds on August 18, 1979 at Memorial Presbyterian Church in Phoenix Arizona.
Larry received a Bachelor’s of Science in Biology from The Wichita State University in 1974, a Master’s of Science in Zoology from Colorado State University in 1976, and a PhD in Zoology from Arizona State University in 1980. Larry had a profound love of teaching and was an accomplished Biology professor. He began his career at St. Mary of the Plaines College in Dodge City, Kansas then Ottawa University, Ottawa, Kansas. For the past 19 years, Larry has been a dedicated professor at Utah Valley University in Orem, Utah. In 2004 Larry was awarded the Distinguished Faculty Award and the Trustees Award of Excellence from UVU.
Larry was an avid researcher and was greatly involved in his community. His research included monitoring aquatic macroinvertebrate and zooplankton populations for pollution impacts as well as long-term effects of land-use changes in wetland streams. Most recently he was a member of the Utah Lake Technical Advisory Committee, a member of the Water Quality and Fisheries subcommittee for the Spanish Fork River Coordinated Resource Management Committee and a member of the Farmington Bay/Great Salt Lake Wetlands Technical Advisory Committee. Larry was also a consultant for the Utah Division of Water Quality and was a Certified Senior Ecologist with the Ecological Society of America. He published many research articles and co-authored many books and college textbooks.
Larry and Margaret had three wonderful children Lawrence, William, and Stephanie. In recent years they have been blessed with three grandchildren Miles, Autumn, and Thomas. Larry was a fantastic father and grandfather that loved his children and grandchildren immensely. He loved to spend time with his children and involved them in many of his research adventures and taught them to have a great love for nature and the natural resources around them. He had hopes of teaching his grandchildren how to fish, identify water bugs, and pull pranks on their parents. His determined spirit and unconditional love will continue on through his family and will never be forgotten.
He is survived by his wife Margaret, his sister Patricia (Jim) Marlett of Wichita Kansas, his three children, Lawrence Gray (Karina) of Iowa City, Iowa, William Gray (Carly) of Dexter Michigan, and Stephanie Stark (Nick) of Ramsey Minnesota, and his three grandchildren, Miles Stark, Autumn Stark, and Thomas Gray. He will be greatly missed by his family and UVU. In lieu of flowers please consider a donation to the Wichita Audubon Society at P.O Box 47607, Wichita, KS 67201.
A memorial service will be held in his honor Saturday June 17, 2017 at the Springville Community Presbyterian Church. The church is located at 245 South 200 East Springville Utah. Services will begin at 2:00pm with a visitation at 1:30pm.