Gary Ernest Craig

Monday, January 6, 2014

Gary Ernest Craig, 61, of Hattiesburg, Miss., passed away to go to his heavenly home on Friday, Jan. 3, 2014. He was formerly of Monette, graduating from Monette High School in 1970. He was of the Baptist belief. Gary was born Oct. 5, 1952, in Leachville to the late William Russell Craig and Ruby Rosetta Bush Craig.

Gary moved to Mississippi in 1979 and attended the University of Southern Mississippi obtaining his undergraduate degree in social work in August 1983. He earned his graduate degree in social and rehabilitative counseling in May 1986. He worked for the State of Mississippi for more than 10 years, primarily providing counseling and helping services to south Mississippi residents through the Department of Vocational Rehabilitation in Hattiesburg.

After his retirement in 1995 Gary's hobbies included leather work as well as being involved in making sure individuals in Mississippi had adequate access to various locations and businesses with the implementation of the American Disabilities Act (ADA). He served on various local boards that truly assisted the handicapped by assisting the appropriate agencies in enforcing the ADA. Gary also spent a considerable amount of time on the computer researching the laws of the ADA.

He is survived by two sisters and their husbands, Kaye and Wayne Ray of Hattiesburg and Raye and Ted Finley of Monette; two brothers and their wives, Gene and Jan Craig and Bill and Linda Craig, all of Monette; three nieces, Lorri (Jeff) Devereaux of Hattiesburg, Marti Finley Ladd of Monette and Leigh (Nathan) Coleman of Brookland; four nephews, Michael (Ginger) Ray of Hattiesburg, Rusty (Jennifer) Craig and Tom Craig, all of Monette, and Mickey (Joanne) Craig of Hillsdale, Mich.; caregiver for more than 30 years, William Swindoll. He also leaves behind a host of other relatives and friends.

Pallbearers will be Michael Ray, Jeff Devereaux, Tom Craig, Mickey Craig, Rusty Craig, Jim Watson, Tommy Ray and Nathan Coleman.

A celebration of Gary's life will begin Tuesday, Jan. 7, with the family receiving friends from 6-8 p.m. at the Monette Baptist Church.

Services will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 8, at the Monette Baptist Church with Rev. Jerry Reed and Rev. Rusty Bird officiating. Burial will follow at the Macey Cemetery under the direction of Gregg Funeral Home of Monette.

A memorial service will be held in Hattisburg at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, lasting memorials may be sent to the United Way of Southeast Mississippi, (funds to be directed to "Living Independently for Everyone" - LIFE), P.O. Box 1648, Hattiesburg, MS 39403.