Gay Chaney Vaughn, age 66, of Sebring, FL, formerly of Paragould, AR and Augusta, AR, passed from this life on August 21, 2020 due to COVID-19.
Gay was born on June 24, 1954 in Batesville, Arkansas and was raised in Augusta, AR and Paragould, AR where she loved her Paragould High School Class of 1972. She attended the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville where she was a member of the Chi Omega Sorority. She finished her B.S.E. degree in Special Education at Arkansas State University. Gay worked as an educator for over 35 years in Paragould, AR and then Sebring, Florida, where she moved with her family in 1985. Before retiring in June of this year she taught at multiple levels of elementary school before spending the last half of her career at Sebring Middle School. She also worked part time at Children’s Museum of the Highlands, contributing more of her time to helping children in the community. Gay was an active member of First United Methodist Church of Sebring. She was loved by many in all of these communities and returned that love in full by devoting herself to serving others in need, perhaps none more than the unconditional love she committed to family & friends. Gay’s life was the example of loving and considering others, even above herself. She also enjoyed her peaceful time outside with nature and loved to play tennis with her late husband Marty, hike, kayak and other water activities. Above all, Grandma Gay (GG) had immersed herself in spending time with her four beloved granddaughters that she adored.
Despite repeatedly experiencing extreme tragedy in her life, Gay gathered strength to survive & overcome. She provided inspiration and positive influence for those around her as a daughter, sister, mother, grandmother, aunt, niece, cousin, caretaker, teacher and friend. She touched so many lives by always sincerely listening and nurturing others. She showed us how to take the time to be with the ones we love, and we learned that simply being together is the most important thing of all (no matter how far you have to drive).
Gay was the devoted wife of the late Martin David Vaughn. She was the daughter of Nellwyn Price Chaney of Hot Springs, AR, and the late Donald Price Chaney, Sr. She was the granddaughter of the late Harney and Helen Chaney of Batesville, AR, and the late John and Auda Price of Searcy, AR. Gay is survived by her mother and two brothers: Don Chaney and wife Terri Chaney of Arkadelphia, AR, and David Sibley of Los Angeles, CA. She had two sons, Chaney and wife Margaret Block of Miami, FL, and the late Toby Jefferson Block; step daughter Lara Vaughn and husband Jonathan Ray of Athens, GA; four grandchildren: Eva and Emily Block of Miami, FL, and Riley and Laklee Block of Paragould, AR; her late husband’s parents: Mary Vaughn and the late Eulus Vaughn, Cardwell, MO; sister-in-law Jody Vaughn of Orlando, FL; brother-in-law Stan Vaughn and wife Mary of Senath, MO; and a host of loving relatives and friends.
Memorials may be made to the Cardwell Cemetery Association, P.O. Box 482, Cardwell, MO 63829-0488, which will be her final resting place. Alternatively, a memorial gift may be made at https://www.npca.org/give/memorial-tribute-giving to help provide a lasting legacy, preserve America’s National Parks and honor GG’s dream of RVing the country with her granddaughters during retirement. Please also consider planting a rose bush in her memory to share each blooming rose with a loved one on their birthday as Gay taught us.
The family is planning a private graveside service. We ask that our privacy is respected, and that no public gatherings or memorial services take place at this time. Please honor Gay wherever you are located by observing recommended COVID safety measures of mask wearing, distancing, hand washing and using common sense to keep everyone as safe as possible. We do not wish for anyone else to endure the immense suffering that Gay experienced and the sudden, immediate and overwhelming tragedy our family is experiencing at this time. In lieu of a public service the family has created an online link to share thoughts, comments, stories and other memories of Gay. We encourage anyone and everyone to add to her legacy at https://www.celebrationof gayvaughn.com/.