Betty Lois (Nollner) Bray Dean Corpus Christi, TX Betty Lois (Nollner) Bray Dean died peacefully at home in Corpus Christi Thursday, Jan. 12, 2017. She was 87. She was born on a farm between Spearman and Gruver, Texas, in the Texas Panhandle, to Leroy Nelson Nollner and Lois Marguerite (Kizziar) Nollner July 1, 1929. Betty was known for her joy in living, and complete devotion to her two husbands (Keith Bray, 30 years, and Tom Dean, 33 years) and her ever-expanding covey of four children; nine grandchildren; 25 great-grandchildren; and eight great-great-grandchildren. She was known for her fish fries of local speckled trout, chicken-fried venison backstrap, and King Ranch chicken. She loved all music genres, and could jitterbug with the best. She played bridge, canasta, and rummikub. She loved to listen to Tom play guitar with his friends at the South Texas Opry. Hummingbirds were a special passion, and travel. She found time to participate in Epsilon Sigma Alpha sorority of Kingsville. She graduated from Gruver High School in 1946, then attended one year at West Texas State College (Canyon), where she met and married Keith Raymond Bray of Perryton in 1947. First child Linda was born in Perryton in 1948, then Claudia in Portalis, NM, in 1952, Alice in Borger in 1954, then Roy in Port Lavaca in 1956. Betty and Keith, as well as in-laws Jim and Alice Bray, then settled in Kingsville in 1958. Keith worked in sales for K.A. Childs Motors, sold advertising for the Kingsville Record, and eventually developed his own used car business, and was appointed Justice of the Peace, Precinct 1, to which position he was elected from 1966 to 1982. In 1981, Betty married Thomas Sawyer Dean, Jr., retired machinist, and moved to Corpus Christi. Tom was beloved by the Bray brood, and took time out from his workshop-where he machined small-scale, working aircraft-to watch and help them grow. Betty was preceded in death by husbands Thomas Sawyer Dean, Jr., and Keith Raymond Bray; her parents, Leroy and Lois Nollner; two brothers, Bob Nollner and Billy Nollner, and one sister, Nella Nollner McCoy; one daughter Claudia Bray Meek, and one great-grandson, Gavin Sandoval. She is survived by brother, Roy "Sonny" Nollner, two daughters, Linda Lois Bray and Alice Jean Bray, one son, Roy Keith Bray, and nine grandchildren: Jimmy Mineau, Ronnie Cavazos, Trisha Alvarado, Allison Sims (Freddie), Betty Cade, Jason Bray (Anna), Justin Bray (Marisol), Lindsey Bray, and Bryan Meek; 25 great-grandchildren; and seven great-great grandchildren. Visitation will be held on Monday, January 16, 2017, from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., at Memory Gardens Chapel. Service will be held Tuesday, January 17, 2017, at 1:30 p.m. at Memory Gardens Chapel, 8200 Old Brownsville Rd., Corpus Christi. Pallbearers will be Jason Bray, Justin Bray, Freddie Sims, Jimmy Mineau, Bryan Meek, and Ester Cuello.
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