Carl Crouse Gray Jr.

January 3, 1947 ~ November 27, 2023 (age 76) 76 Years Old

Carl Crouse Gray Jr. Obituary

Rev. Carl C. Gray Jr, age 76, of Geneva, passed away November 27, 2023, at his home with his loving family by his side.

Carl was born January 3, 1947, in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, the son of Carl and Elizabeth (Fulton) Gray. He grew up in Philipsburg, Pennsylvania, and graduated from Westminster College, New Wilmington, Pennsylvania, in 1968. He went on to Princeton Theological Seminary and graduated in 1971 with a Master of Divinity. Carl and his wife, Donna Gray, also a graduate of Princeton, became one of the very first clergy couples in the Presbyterian Church (USA).  It was very important to Carl that they were to serve with equal status and recognition, first at Hope of Christ Presbyterian, (formally Panther Valley) in Pennsylvania, and later at Highland Park Presbyterian Church, in Highland Park, IL.   He went on to serve as senior pastor of Fox Valley Presbyterian Church in Geneva, IL, for fourteen years, where he retired.

While pastoring in Panther Valley, Carl was the volunteer Fire Chief of Diligence Fire Company #1. Earlier in life, he served as a junior fire fighter, starting at the age of 16, and as an ambulance attendant, with Hope Fire Company #2 in Philipsburg,

Carl was especially concerned with giving children a good foundation in life.  In Panther Valley he saw the need for a pre-school in a coal mining area and started The Shining Star Pre-School that operated for 49 years.  Later in Geneva, he founded the Growing Place Pre-School, which is still active and one of the most highly rated after twenty years. 

During retirement he enjoyed summers and falls at his cabin in Pennsylvania, and vacation time in Ocean City, New Jersey. In Geneva, he loved being involved with his five grandchildren, swimming, hiking and going to their games. Penn State was his favorite college football team. He enjoyed walks every day with his dog, Sammie, aqua aerobic classes and reading.

Carl was a loving father, active in the lives of his two children, a proud grandfather, a faithful preacher and pastor, always a compassionate and faithful servant.

Carl is survived by his beloved wife of 51 years Donna (Hitner); children Will (Julia) of Batavia and Katie Pierce of Geneva; grandchildren Harrison, Collin, Signe, Jackson, and Iris; sister Jenifer (Dr. Gerald) Lowman of Easton, PA; and nephew Jared Lowman and niece Molly Lowman and great nephews Conner and Chase; as well as many other dear relatives and friends.

He was preceded in death by his sister Jane who passed away in infancy and his parents.

Visitation will be held Friday, December 15, from 3:00 – 7:00 pm, at Malone Funeral Home, 324 E. State Street (Route 38), Geneva.

A funeral service for Carl will be held Saturday, December 16, 2023, at 10:30 am, at First Congregational Church of Glen Ellyn, 535 Forest Avenue, Glen Ellyn, with Rev. Seth Carey and Rev. Kyle Roggenbuck officiating.

Burial will be held privately.

Memorials may be sent to:

The Growing Place Pre-School

227 East Side Drive

Geneva, IL 60134

 Mauch Chunk Lake Park

625 Lentz Trail

Jim Thorpe, PA 18229

 Diligent Fire Company #1

114 W. Ludlow Street

Summit Hill, PA 18250

For information 630-232-8233 or

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Carl Crouse Gray Jr., please visit our floral store.

Friends and family have shared their relationship to show their support.
How do you know Carl Crouse Gray Jr.?
We are sorry for your loss.
Help others honor Carl Crouse's memory.


December 15, 2023

3:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Malone Funeral Home
324 East State Street
Geneva, IL 60134

Funeral Service
December 16, 2023

10:30 AM
First Congregational Church of Glen Ellyn
535 Forest Avenue
Glen Ellyn, IL 60137

Video is available for this event


© 2024 Malone Funeral Home. All Rights Reserved. Funeral Home website by CFS & TA | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Accessibility