Cayle Gray Scholarship Fund

The Cayle Gray Scholarship Fund was established in memory of Cayle Gray and seeks to help Christians further their education in the field of their choice.

HOW IT STARTED:  After Cayle’s death, a thoughtful young man named Dustin Underwood, who played bass with the praise team and had met Cayle during his last summer, decided to establish a scholarship fund in Cayle’s memory. For his 18th birthday, Dustin asked that instead of birthday presents, friends and family donate to this scholarship fund. A fundraising party was held for Dustin’s birthday, and on that night the Cayle Gray Scholarship Fund was formed.   

If you would like to apply for the Cayle Gray Scholarship Fund, please fill out the application.

On May 6, 1986, our family was overjoyed by the birth of a boy who was named Gerald Cayle Gray in honor of his grandfather. But for the entirety of his short life, he would always be known as Cayle.  He had been the only son born to a father who was also an only son. He was named in honor of his grandfather so that the family name and Gray surname could be passed to a new generation. Sadly, this was not to happen.  We could have never imagined that Cayle’s time on earth would be so short and that he would leave this world before either his father or the grandfather who was his namesake.  For on August 17, 2007, Cayle died. We were told that he had died of a drug overdose the drug in question being alcohol, which was completely legal and accessible to him since he had recently turned 21.

Cayle had died after a night of binge drinking, a high-risk behavior which is a primary cause of alcohol overdose and can cause death within hours. Teenagers and young adults are particularly vulnerable. Many victims are first-time drinkers who have never been drunk before. Many victims are put to bed by friends or family to “sleep it off” only to be found dead the next morning. Many do not know that if a person drinks too much alcohol quickly before falling asleep, the alcohol can shut down breathing and heart functions and can kill within hours.  Our family believes that the lack of public information about alcohol poisoning has been a national disgrace, and that Cayle could have been saved if both he and the people around him on his last night had been better informed. We would like to do everything in our power to bring attention to this serious public health problem which kills a significant number of teenagers and young adults. Too many people are dying tragically and needlessly. Too many people do not know that you can overdose on alcohol, just as you can on heroin or cocaine. Our own family had not known the dangers of alcohol overdose until it was too late.  After Cayle’s death, we wanted to learn more. What we found was that specific information is in short supply. How many drinks will take your life? And in what time frame? How can you tell if someone is in danger? What should you do to help? What should you NOT do? So, we started a website so that we could learn the answers to these questions and to give others the information that we wish we had known before August 17, 2007.

When Cayle went on his drinking binge, he did not realize that he could die. Most people, when they drink too much, don’t have the thought in the back of their minds that they could possibly die. They know that they might be sick or they might have a terrible hangover, and they know that they can’t drink and drive. But they don’t drink with the awareness that they could die.  We want this information to be sent far and wide so that lives can be saved. The greatest tragedy is that, when young people overdose on alcohol, they are seldom alone. Unfortunately, drunk people are incapable of saving themselves. But, even more unfortunately, they are often in the company of people who are sober enough to help, but don’t see the danger or know what to do. It is not a joke to be extremely drunk. A passed-out person is not a laughing matter. When you see someone who is passed out and unresponsive, that person could die.

Please take a few minutes to study this information so that you can be equipped with the knowledge that can save a life. Maybe the life of your son or daughter. Or maybe the life you save will be your own.  The price for not knowing is terrible beyond description. A father and a mother have lost their only son. A sister has lost her only brother. A half-sister has lost the only brother she has ever known. A step-brother lost a beloved friend and brother. Cayle’s young nephews and niece will never know their uncle. This profound loss is something we feel every day. It is our sincere hope that no other family experience what we are going through. 

Through education we can prevent these untimely deaths. There is nothing more important than saving a life.  Be educated and you could save a life.