Gayle McAllister, 92, passed away January 8, 2022, at Freeman Hospital after a sudden illness.
Gayle was born August 3, 1929, to the late John Littleton Stauffer and Helen McNeal Stauffer and was a lifelong Joplin resident.
Gayle graduated from Joplin High School in 1947 and attended Lindenwood College for one year. She graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia in 1951, where she was a member of the Tri Delta Sorority. Following graduation, she taught 6th grade at Columbia Elementary School for two years. She also worked as the receptionist for both her husband and son at their dental office for over thirteen years and taught several years at St. Mary’s Elementary School.
In 1954, Gayle married Dr. John W. (Bill) McAllister. They celebrated 52 years of marriage before he passed away in 2006.
Gayle was very active in the community. She served on the board of the United Way; was past president of the Joplin Schools Foundation; past president of the Freeman Foundation; served as volunteer at Freeman Hospital; was president of the YWCA board when they acquired their new building; and served several terms on the Joplin R-VIII School Board, where she held the position as president.
Gayle was a lifelong member of First United Methodist Church, where she played handbells, sang in the choir, helped in the sewing group and served on the Trustee Board. She also was a member of Chapter F.I.; the P.E.O. Sisterhood and Twin Hills Golf and Country Club.
Gayle enjoyed knitting; playing golf, bridge and gin rummy; and playing dominoes and Skipbo with her friends at Wildwood Independent Living Center. Her friends there brought her great joy. She loved spending time with her family, traveling, dining out and was well known for speaking her mind.
In addition to her parents and husband, Gayle was preceded in death by a sister, Gretchen Torres and her close companion of eleven years, Eddie McKay.
Survivors include her daughter, Lynn Johnson, Joplin; sons, Dr. John McAllister and wife, Sally, St. Louis, and Dr. Edward McAllister and wife, Sheri, Joplin; eight grandchildren: Marly Ramsour, Neosho, Ross Ramsour and wife, Lindsay, Houston, Texas, Kaci Goetz, Stratford, Connecticut, Will McAllister and wife, Shannon, St. Louis, Joseph McAllister, Seattle, Washington, Megan Kelling and husband, Scott, Kansas City, Lydia McAllister, Austin, Texas, and Locke McAllister, Kansas City; five great grandchildren: Sylvia Goetz, Josephine McAllister, Bowen Kelling, Caroline Ramsour, and Kollins Ramsour; and nephews: David Torres, Joplin, and Cristian Torres, Scottsdale, Arizona; together with a host of extended family and friends.
A Celebration of life is planned for Friday at 1:00 p.m. at the First United Methodist Church. Rev. Marsha West Eichler will officiate. The family will receive friends Thursday from 5-7:00 p.m. at Parker Mortuary. Private family interment will be at Mount Hope Cemetery.
Memorial contributions may be made to First United Methodist Church.
Due to the current health crisis, the family requests that masks be worn at all services.
Arrangements are under the direction of Parker Mortuary.