Dorothy Gray Howard ‘Dot’ Sparks

Published 10:47 am Friday, September 28, 2018

On Sept. 25, 2018, Dorothy “Dot” Gray Howard Sparks, 92, died while surrounded by family and friends at her home in Somerset Court.

She grew up in the Redland community and after her marriage to Ray Sparks in 1948, resided at his family’s farm in Advance built in 1866. They were lifelong members of Bethlehem United Methodist Church where multiple generations of Sparks and Howards worshipped. She served as church treasurer, Sunday school teacher and choir member. She was employed by Hanes Hosiery until her retirement and moved to Somerset Court the year following Ray’s death in 2010.

She was preceded in death by her husband of 62 years, Ray Foster Sparks; parents, Willie Thomas and Clara James Howard; and a brother, Raymond Thomas Howard.

Survivors: her brothers, the Rev. Hobert H. (Marguerite) Howard of Greenville, S.C., W. Clegg (Imogene) Howard of Clemmons, James C. (Pauline) Howard of Advance; her son, Donald Ray (Linda) Sparks of Mocksville; her daughter, Carole Sparks (David) Parris of Columbia, Md.;  her grandchildren, Tommy (Bekah) Sparks, Julie Parris (Lang) Wethington,  Marsha  (Rodney Haynes) Sparks,  Melissa (Doug Williams) Parris, Tori Parris Ellis, Kelli Parris (Ryan) Turkaleski;  10 great-grandchildren; and many nieces, nephews and cousins.

A funeral service will be conducted at 3 p.m., Sunday, Sept. 30 at Eaton Funeral Chapel with the Rev. Chuck Baker, Dr. Darrell Cox and the Rev. Hobert Howard officiating. Burial will follow in Bethlehem United Methodist Church Cemetery. The family will receive friends from 6-8 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 29 at the funeral home.

Memorials: Bethlehem UMC Cemetery Fund, 321 Redland Road, Advance; Trellis Supportive Care, 377 Hospital St., Ste. 103, Mocksville; or charity of donor’s choice.