Stephen Jerome McCray Sr was born on January 1, 1953 in Lawton, OK to Walter L. McCray and Mary E. Carter.
As a child Stephen grew up with a large family. At an early age he enjoyed going to church, playing football in the street, and making go karts with his brothers. As a teenager he worked in a local grocery store and played high school sports. Playing basketball at Douglas and football at Lawton High school where he graduated. After high school he worked for a few years before enlisting in the Army at Ft Polk, LA. He served for 8 years where his duty stations included: Ft Sill, OK, Ft Greely, AK, and Wiesbaden, Germany. Upon getting out of the military he lived in Chicago where he worked for the US. Army Recruiting Command as a mail clerk. It was also around this time that Stephen earned an Associate of Science Degree through Southwestern Oklahoma State University.
Stephen married Betty Jean (BJ) on July 29, 1989. They met while at Fort Sheridan, Ill. Their travels brought them to Italy, Fort Knox, Kentucky and eventually to Vine Grove Kentucky where they settled and called home.
Stephen worked as a truck driver for Pepsi in Louisville. He was also a driver for Fort Knox recycle where he retired in 2019. Stephen devoted much of his free time as a Mason with Hub City Lodge 172 and doing community work. He was especially passionate about voting and was at the forefront in making sure people would register. He was also was commissioned as a Kentucky Colonel.
Never forgetting his early church roots Stephen accepted the Lord and was baptized while he attending Independent Baptist church in Wiesbaden. His love for God led him to theological school where he earned an associates in theology in 2018.
Stephen was an avid listener of music and a huge fan of sports. From football to boxing he enjoyed it all. He also was a man of many hobbies. He loved chess and video games and made sure the apples didn’t fall far from the tree. He was the type of person that loved a challenge and what he said he meant. Let us not forget he had a memory of an elephant. He never forgot ANYTHING.
While at home on Sunday, October 11, 2020 Stephen Jerome McCray Sr departed this world. He was preceded in death by his maternal grandparents Jonas & Carrie Jones, his paternal grandparents Glover & Lucinda McCray, his parents, two sisters Belinda McCray and Phyllis Jones, one brother James Jones, and grandson Malachi McCray.
Cherishing his memory is BJ his wife of 31 years, his Stepmother Ella McCray-North Carolina, five brothers Albert (Gwen)-Texas, Clifton (Rosemary)-Oklahoma, Roland-Oklahoma, Palmer-Oklahoma, Kevin (Pamela)-North Carolina, sister Keeley-North Carolina; seven children Conello-Florida, Nadra-Mississippi, Acer-Oklahoma, Stephanie (Tilton)-Oklahoma, Stephen (Alea)-Kentucky, Stephandra-Georgia, Shanatrice-Florida; 20 grandchildren, four great grandchildren, and a host of cousins, nieces, nephews and extended family and friends.
Visitation will be from 5:00 PM until 8:00 PM, Wednesday and from 11:00 AM until 12:00 PM, Thursday at Chism Family Funeral Home, Vine Grove, KY.
Funeral services for Mr. McCray will be held at 12:00 PM, Thursday, October 22, 2020 at the chapel of Chism Family Funeral Home, Vine Grove, KY. Burial with military honors will follow at the Kentucky Veterans Cemetery Central, Radcliff, KY.
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