Many years ago, French Novelist Anatole France, an inspired author, wrote, “To accomplish great things, one must dream as well as act." In retrospect, these words seem totally appropriate when reflecting on the beginning history of E. Vaughn Wray Funeral Establishment.
In the early 1990’s, a gifted young man, while most children spent their Saturday mornings playing outside, 14 year old Eric V. Wray could be found at the former Pretlow's Funeral Home in Norfolk, assisting on funerals, while training under his mentor Valanti R. Lambert. As a young child, he took very seriously the tasks of moving caskets, washing funeral vehicles, cutting the funeral homes grass and arranging flowers. These values were instilled into Eric very early; even today as a licensee, these values are still at the core of who Eric is.
Over the years, our founder has been fortunate to serve as a Funeral Director & General Manager at some of Hampton Roads most premier Funeral Homes. Most notably, Graves Funeral Home, Rosewood - Kellum Funeral Homes, Community Funeral Homes & Metropolitan Funeral Services. While he served these firms with pride, there was still a void in his life because of an overwhelming desire to achieve the American Dream of entrepreneurship.
His dream seemed almost impossible because of the road blocks he experienced over the years for such a venture. One day, his dream became an exciting reality. In May of 2015, Eric acquired 5873 Poplar Hall Drive of Norfolk, Virginia to begin the journey of superior service.
After 6 months of remodeling, the previous handicapped center was ready for its grand opening as a funeral home. The new state of the art facility includes the Chapel with a seating capacity of 225 people; spacious family staterooms, and Conference Rooms.
Eric V. Wray II, the visionary, was willing to “climb every mountain” until he realized his dream. Therefore, it is incumbent upon his future successors, to carry on the legacy by providing that there is no such thing as an “impossible dream”.