Barbara C. Gray ’ 88 died in 2004 on her birthday, April 5th. She died in her sleep of pneumonia. Barbara graduated from Albert Einstein High School in Silver Spring, Maryland before attending Dartmouth. At Dartmouth, she majored in Psychology and received a Tucker Fellowship for her work in constructive social change. Barbara is survived by her aunt, Nydia Gray Tally, and is buried in Middletown, New York.
Eric Freeman ’88 remembers:
Barbara was one of my first fast friends at Dartmouth. Hanover was the first place I’d lived outside of Washington DC, so I gravitated toward others who shared my sense of geography. Also from the DC area, Barbara and I connected quickly. Known as Connie to her high school friends – but never to anyone at Dartmouth – you always knew where you stood with Barbara. She was sober-sided (literally, she didn’t imbibe), stentorian, and stoic in her approach to the world. But underneath was a heart of gold.
Barbara was a caring spirit. I grew to learn that her tough, serious exterior enveloped a warm, tender inside. Through she rarely gave a care about how others perceived her, Barbara had an uncanny way of conforming your perception of her to her intention of your perception of her. (…I remember being so envious of her ability to do that!)
One late freshman fall day, as we walked hand in hand across the Green, she spotted her (then) boyfriend, Eddie O’Garro ’88. We were at least 50 feet away from Eddie (also a dear friend of mine). As I loosened my grip from her hand, Barbara just as intently firmed her grip on mine – and began swinging arms as we approached him (as if to punctuate our hand-holding). Of course, Eddie looked quizzically at me! But after noticing Barbara’s deadpan countenance, he merely shrugged his shoulders and hugged both of us.
We three continued down the Green – but now Eddie held Barbara’s hand.
This ‘episode’ was never discussed. And there was never any question as to anyone’s integrity.
Such is how I remember Barbara – a classmate with impeccable integrity, whose fierce unbotheredness in the moment gave others around her permission also to be unbothered.