Thursday, August 6, 2015

Bessie Irene Ray

Bessie Irene Woods Ray “Ma Bess” graced this world on March 4, 1920 and left peacefully on August 5, 2015. She left a footprint and legacy that we should all strive to uphold. She loved with all her heart, took care of many and never strayed from her beliefs. She was a beacon and an example for all who knew her. Simply said “she was loved by all”.
Born in 1920, Bessie started attending Doty Springs Baptist Church as a one month old infant. Her mother and father carried her in a basket where she sat on the front pew with her family. Until failing health, 2 years ago, you could find her in that very spot at least 3 times a week. She was baptized there when she was 16 years old. She gave her heart, soul and faith to God and followed His word daily. It was her privilege to have been a member of Doty Springs for 79 years.

She worked in the Pants and Garment Factory in Louisville, MS for 22 years while being a devoted wife and mother.

Bessie married Elton Girey Ray in 1939 on Mother’s Day. They had 2 beautiful daughters. Eleanor “Faye” Ray, Sarah Lynn Ray and a precious infant boy. They were happily married for 45 years. Now they are together again in the presence of the Lord.

So many lives were touched by this beautiful soul. She was generous beyond compare, patient with all of her heart and most of all she loved the Lord.

She is preceded in death by her husband Elton Girey Ray, her daughter Sarah Lynn Ray Ayers, son-in-law Doug Ayers, sister Mavis Woods Steed, sister Ellen Woods, brother Clyde Woods, & sister Inez Woods Sullivan.
She is survived by her daughter, Eleanor “Faye” Ray Teters and husband Max, brother Clarence Woods and wife Mavis, sister-in law Mary Miller Woods, brother Guy Woods and wife Mamie, sister Dorothy Woods Macdonald, granddaughter Teresa Teters Eaton and husband Danny, grandson Darren Ray Teters and wife Robbie, grandson Geoffrey Ayers, 5 great grandchildren (Darrien, Preston Ray, Sarah, Patricia, Gina) and many beloved nieces, nephews and cousins.

Family will welcome visitors at the Nowell-Massey Funeral Home (Louisville, MS) on Sunday August 9, 2015 between 5:30 & 9:00 p.m. The funeral service will be at Doty Springs Baptist Church on Monday August 10, 2015. There will be a visitation to welcome family and friends beginning at 3:30 followed by the service beginning at 4:30. Burial will be in the Doty Springs Cemetery with food and fellowship to follow.
Serving as pallbearers will be Chris Dixon, Jamie Dixon, Regis Dixon, Allen Havens, Petey Steed and Kenneth Woods. Honorary pallbearers will be Jimmy Adcock, Bobby Ballard, Bobby Black, Burlin Crocker, Paul Holly, Bobby Horton and Keith McCool.

Services are under the direction of Nowell-Massey Funeral Home, 724 North Columbus Avenue, Louisville, MS. Memories and condolences may be shared with the family by signing the guest register at