For the first half of her life, a softball field, a basketball or tennis court,…
Mrs. Nancy (Reeves) Gavi (CC’67), age 75, stepped into the arms of her loving Savior in the early morning of Wednesday, April 20, 2022, at her home, surrounded by her family after a courageous two-year battle with cancer.
Nancy Kay Reeves was born to Glenn Albert and Thelma Evelyn (Dempster) Reeves on March 1, 1947, in LeMars, Iowa. She joined two big sisters, Marlene and Norma, and waited patiently for two little brothers, Warren and Duane.
Nancy graduated from Kingsley-Pierson High School in Kingsley, Iowa in 1965. She then attended and graduated from Central College in McPherson, Kansas with an associate degree in Business in 1967. From there she attended Roberts Wesleyan College in Rochester, New York, on an academic scholarship, which was the beginning of her education and training as a nurse.
After graduating from nursing school in 1970, Nancy decided to join the Army Nurse Corps. She attended Officer’s Basic Training in Fort Sam Houston, Texas graduating in November 1970. Her first assignment as a nurse was to Fitzsimmons General Hospital in Aurora, Colorado. At Fitzsimmons Nancy took care of Vietnam casualties for three years before receiving orders to transfer to Grafenwéhr, Germany.
While assigned to active duty in Grafenwohr, Germany, Nancy met her future husband, Ray James Gavi. They were married in LeMars, Iowa, on December 20, 1975, and immediately moved to Fort Ord, California where Ray was assigned after leaving Grafenwohr.
Nancy was assigned to be a Commander of a group of Palo Alto reservists that drilled at Fort Ord. During this time in California, a daughter, Tammy Michelle, was born in 1976 and a son, Jeffrey Ray, was born in 1979.
In October of 1979, Nancy and Ray moved their family to Aurora, Colorado after Ray separated from the Army.
Nancy began a civil service position at Fitzsimmons General Hospital, coming full circle to the place she began her nursing career. She served as a staff nurse on the General Surgery Ward and remained at this post for 18 years.
During this time, Nancy was also assigned to a reserve unit at Fitzsimmons from 1979-1987. She then transferred to the Colorado National Guard at Buckley Air Force Base in 1987, remaining in the National Guard until she retired in 2000 as a Colonel with 30 years of military service.
Nancy then continued nursing until she retired in 2018 having served as a nurse for 48 years and caring for thousands of patients during her career.
Nancy was a dedicated, hard-working woman who claimed she learned her work ethic from growing up on a farm. However, work ethic was not the only thing Nancy learned on the farm. Her early years shaped her heart to know God’s love and cultivated her calling to care for all things in God’s creation.
Nancy was also known for her quick wit, wonderful sense of humor, and very generous spirit. She loved running, her grandchildren, hosting friends and family, and a good cup of coffee, to which she treated herself multiple times per day. Her children and grandchildren’s lives have been enriched by her legacy of faith.
She loved deeply, first her God, then her family, her friends, and anyone entrusted to her care. In turn, she was deeply loved and will be deeply missed.
Those grieving her absence while celebrating her legacy are her husband, Ray, Aurora, CO; daughter Tammy (Marty) Van Driel, Colorado Springs, CO; son Jeff (Jackie) Gavi, Parker, CO; grandsons Solomon and Silas Van Driel; granddaughters Ava and Maryn Gavi; two sisters, Marlene (John) Jenkins, Oroville, WA, and Norma (John) Rempe, Centennial, CO; two brothers, Warren (Chris) Reeves, Kingsley, IA, and Duane (Vivien) Reeves, Orange City, IA; numerous nieces and nephews; and many personal, military, and professional friends.
“Surely goodness and mercy with follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.” — Psalm 17:15
In remembrance of Nancy’s life and ongoing legacy, the family asks that any charitable donations be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, an organization that was very dear to her heart. A memorial fund has been set up in her honor.
ABOUT CENTRAL CHRISTIAN COLLEGE OF KANSAS
Central Christian College of Kansas is a regionally accredited institution offering undergraduate and graduate-level programs. Central strives to offer Christ-centered education for the whole person – heart, mind, soul, and strength. Its history dates back to 1884, and it is located in the friendly town of McPherson, Kansas. Central is a strategically small college that offers over forty areas of residential study and a thriving online program for non-traditional students. To learn more about Central go to centralchristian.edu/about. Visit the Foundation of Central Christian College to see what projects and events are coming up.