Eva “LaRay” Byers,” our beloved wife, mother, grandmother, sister, aunt and friend passed away surrounded by family on March 3, 2020. She now rests with the Lord.
LaRay was born Oct. 2, 1939 in Logan, Utah to Gerald and Dorothy (Olney) Obray.
LaRay was the second eldest of seven siblings born to Dorothy Olney Cooper.
LaRay met the love of her life in Moab, Utah, Glenn Byers, and the two were married on Jan. 26, 1957 in Elko, Nevada. Later their marriage was sealed in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints at the Manti, Utah Temple on Jan. 25, 1975.
LaRay was strong in her testimony of the church and would sit for hours reading and studying the scriptures. She was an active member of the church and held many different callings in her lifetime. Her temple work was important to her and she enjoyed the time spent with the brothers and sisters of the church.
Her strength came from the love she had for her family and her faith in the Lord. From the moment she became a mother, grandmother, and great grandmother those children were the diamonds of her life. Meritt Hobbs, her granddaughter, said, “Grandma was the very foundation of our family. She was the grace and patience we all lacked. I have lost my idol.”
LaRay was an empowering, genuine and selfless person. She always put the needs of others above her own. It’s just the kind of person she was. There was not a person that LaRay would not forgive and she judged no one. God must surely have needed another angel around the throne that day.
She loved arts and crafts, sewing, quilting, crocheting and embroidering. She loved all animals no matter how great or small, as each had a special place in her heart. Some of her favorite pastimes were going for rides and outings with her family, picnics, listening to music and bathing those grandbabies. She used her artistic abilities to brighten the lives of people she loved. One of her favorite things to draw and color were her fairies. Elvis Presley also won her music heart years ago.
LaRay is survived by her loving husband of 63 years, Glenn Earl Byers of Moab; three children, Steven Byers (Yudelka) of Moab, Glenda Byers of Moab, and Terri Byers (Kenyon Sheets) of Moab; four grandchildren, Michael Byers, Merrit Hobbs, DJ Byers and Loni Sheets of Moab; three great grandchildren, Burgan and Anabella Byers and Mosely Jones of Moab; brothers, Paul O’Bray (Jane) of South Jordan, Utah and Budd Cooper of Midvale, Utah; sisters, Karen Hess (Vernile) of Kaysville, Utah, Jana Flynn (Don) of Moab, Cinda Obray of California and brothers-in-law, Richard Crossley of Davis County and Dan Oliver of Riverton, Utah. Many nieces and nephews survive her.
LaRay was preceded in death by her parents, an infant son, Joseph Byers; sisters Sue Crossley and Jill Oliver, nephew Virgil “Chance” Martinez, mother-in-law Marie Byers and many loving family members that went on before her.
LaRay’s mother referred to her and her siblings as the “Seven Jewels” of her life and in retrospect LaRay referred to the children in her life as her “Diamonds.”
LaRay was surrounded by people every day that were not related to her by blood, but if you asked her, they were family. A few of these people are her son’s mother-in-law, Marina Laura, Rebecca Dull, Mike Beeson, Timothy Elsberry, Merry Bennett, Rhonda and Jaydon Blanton and longtime friend, Shirley Stewart.
A special thank you to the Moab Regional Health Center staff and Dr. Jonas Munger for the years of care you gave; Moab Regional Hospital Emergency Room personnel; Grand County Emergency Medical Services; Grand County Sheriff’s Department; Grand County Food Bank; and Classic Air Medical for the kindness and professionalism you gave our family.