Ray Sparks

Profile Updated: October 11, 2009
Residing In Gastonia, NC USA
Spouse/Significant Other

Nancy Robinson Sparks

Occupation (Include "from" if Retired) Teacher
Children (+ "grands" & "greatgrands") Grant, born 1966
Eric, born 1969
+Natalie Sparks born 2004
+Michael Sparks born 2007

I graduated from NC State. After sophmore year Nancy & I were married. After graduating, We lived in Greenesboro for a year and then we returned to Gastonia. I taught for Gaston County Schools, retiring after 30 years. This included the 17 years that Ashley was a Junior High. I know the place pretty well, including watching while they made it into Ashley Arms.
I received a masters degree from NC A&T in 1976. In 1980, I talked the family into going to Texas for a year and a half, where I went to Texas A&M graduate School. We were good Aggies, standing during the football games and attending the Bonfire. The big surprise; it snowed while the Bonfire burned. Six years later I managed to complete my doctorate in education.
In 1993, Driver Education was changed to a contract program in Gaston County, so a group of teachers formed a private driver's education company and contracted with the county until 2005. Since then, our company, Gaston Driver Education Inc, has continued as a private driving school.
Nancy and I have traveled to most states and into Canada and Mexico. The big trips were to Hawaii and Alaska. We have enjoyed them all, but always end up looking at Crowders Mountain.
We are enjoying our grandchildren, who live a mile from us. That makes it easy to see them and easy for them to return home. As many say, if we had known how much fun they are, we would have had the grandchildren first. Eric is still in Raleigh (when he is not traveling) and has our two grand dogs.

School Story

We were fortunate to have had the opportunity to attend Ashley High School. There was a great faculty and great traditions.
It is hard to believe, but the Ashbrook building is older than the Ashley building was when we were students there.
After spending many years in the building, I was surprised by a couple of things when they renovated it. One was that the back of the cafeteria was on the same level as the boiler room. The other, there was another hallway over the third floor hall, outside of the crow's nest.
One of the last things I did in the building in the summer of '87 when they were taking everything out, was to check the skeleton key, Cary D Osborn gave me when we were doing the class talent show, it still worked. The best thing I did with it was to lock Mrs. F. H. Smith in her closet. I don't think she ever knew what happened.

Ray's Latest Interactions

Hide Comments
Ray Sparks has a birthday today.
Oct 09, 2018 at 4:33 AM
Ray Sparks has a birthday today.
Oct 09, 2017 at 4:33 AM
Ray Sparks has a birthday today.
Oct 09, 2016 at 4:33 AM
Ray Sparks has a birthday today.
Oct 09, 2015 at 4:33 AM
Ray Sparks posted a message. New comment added.
Mar 25, 2015 at 11:48 AM

Posted on: Mar 23, 2015 at 11:21 AM

Just thought of you this morning. Hope things are still going well with you. Had lunch with Collette & Beasley las tweek. We need to get together.

Hide Comments
Posted: Dec 16, 2013 at 11:49 PM
State Championship 50th Reunion, Coach Gaither Cline, Ray Sparks, Terry Heafner, Jim Smith, Gene Williams, Marvin Beasley, Eddie Murphy and Soakie Dellinger. May 2, 2008
Posted: Dec 16, 2013 at 11:49 PM
State Championship 50th Reunion, Marvin Beasley, Gene Williams, Eddie Murphy, Bob Tate, Ray Sparks, Roger Coon, Coach Gaither Cline and Jim Smith. May 2, 2008
Posted: Dec 16, 2013 at 11:49 PM
Coach Franz Holscher, Gene Williams, Freddie Bridges, Ray Sparks, Leonard Dalton and Harold Harwell. September 26, 2008.