Jackie Lynne Gray

February 21, 2024

Jackie Lynne Gray, Ph.D, 79, of Little Rock, Arkansas, passed away February 14, 2024, after a public service career in nursing and her life-long dedication to her Christian faith. Jackie had deep roots in her hometown, Brinkley, Arkansas, where she grew up, attended school, married, became a mother, and established a florist shop with her husband. Dr. Gray obtained a Practical Nursing Certificate from Crowley’s Ridge Vocational Technical School and began her nursing service as an LPN, working in several East Arkansas and Mississippi hospitals. Her early nursing experience motivated her to make nursing her life’s work. While maintaining her employment as a nurse, she obtained her Associate Degree in Nursing from Phillips County Community College, her BS Nursing Degree from the University of Memphis in 1984, her MNSc from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in 1988, and her Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville in 1996. Throughout high school and higher education, Dr. Gray excelled academically, with top grades in every course.

As her career advanced, Dr. Gray’s primary professional interest became nursing education. Her nurse education positions included First Year Nursing Instructor at East Arkansas Community College, assistant professor and on-line instructor at the University of Central Arkansas, University of Arkansas at Little Rock, and lab instructor the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. She served as Director of Nursing Programs at the University of Arkansas at Ft. Smith, and she helped establish the Northwest Arkansas Community College Associate Degree Nursing Program. Finally, Dr. Gray served as Director of Nurse Education for the Arkansas State Board of Nursing. When she moved to Little Rock, Jackie became a faithful member of The Cathedral of St. Andrew, often serving as an usher and for several years managed the floral arrangement for church services and special occasions. Jackie enjoyed bowling and volunteering as a Docent at the Little Rock Zoo, and she was especially devoted to her dogs and supported several dog rescue sites. Jackie is predeceased by her parents, Leonard Gray and Deloris Jackie Downing Gray. She is also predeceased by her son, David Foster, a well-known Memphis actor. Always proud of her family, she is survived by her brother Steven Gray (Jane Gray), her niece Jill Allen (John), and her nephew, Lance Gray (Erin) and Grand Nieces and Nephews, Houston, Gray and Price Allen; and Lauren, Mary Claire, and Sloan Gray. During the last few years, Jackie resided at the Brookdale Chenal Valley Memory Center in Little Rock and, also, received care at the Good Shepherd Rehabilitation Center. She appreciated the care and comfort she received from the staff of both service institutions, as well as from the staff of Hospice Home Care of Little Rock.

Her services will be held at The Cathedral of St. Andrew in Little Rock. Graveside service and interment at Oaklawn Cemetery in Brinkley will be conducted by Bob Neal & Sons Funeral Home. Jackie contributed to numerous charitable organizations. Memorial gifts can be made to The Cathedral of St. Andrew, the Humane Society, and the Little Rock Compassion Center. Services will be on Friday, February 23, at the Cathedral of St Andrews Catholic Church located in Little Rock. Visitation will begin at 11:00A.M. with the Rosary following at 11:30. Mass will begin at 12:00 noon. There will be a graveside service at Oaklawn Cemetery in Brinkley at 3:00P.M. Guestbook/obit/www.bobnealandsons.com.