RIDE IN PEACE: Bill Gray of Tucker Rocky

Publish Date: 
Sep 17, 2012
By Dennis Johnson

PICTURE FOR A moment the consummate professional salesman and the image you have would be a lot like Bill Gray.

A longtime industry stalwart, Gray practiced his craft with pride stretching back to his early days as a rep for Kawasaki and then for RMK, through to the present with notable stints at the business’ biggest distributors and brands. Setting standards, training and mentoring, Gray had an impact on all those with whom he came into contact, says his wife, Teresa.

Always professional, customer service was the name of his game and he took to it with gusto. “He loved to sell,” she told Dealernews. “People would always tell me, ‘He just seems to get younger every day, the more he’s selling.’ I heard that so many times. He looked at life the way that I wish we could all look at life.
“It was just a wonderful ride for him.”

Gray, who most recently worked for Tucker Rocky training reps and departing decades of wisdom, died Sept. 15 after being diagnosed with cancer in July. He was 67.

In addition to his life as a sales professional, Teresa said Gray was also a man of deep faith and action who believed in serving his community and his church, a belief he passed along to their children.

He was simply a man of conviction, who always maintained a positive attitude, no matter what he was doing. In fact, in the time since the diagnosis, Teresa said her husband received countless cards and emails from friend and colleagues thanking him for being such a great mentor and letting him know how special he was.

“What a guy. I’m just the luckiest girl in the world to have had Bill Gray,” she said of her partner of 36 years. “I just think he was a wonderful man.”

She recounted an incident after a recent doctor’s visit where her husband said to her, “There was one more thing on my bucket list I wanted to do. I said, ‘What’s that?’ He said, “I wanted to be with you for 50 years.”

Back in the day
As Teresa explained it, Gray was always involved with two wheels. The lifelong motorcyclist — 800 miles a day, no problem — started with