Teresa Ann Gayer, age 57, daughter of Dewaine and Joyce (Daniel) Dunigan was born Sept. 14, 1964, at Houston, Mo. She passed away surrounded by her family on Dec. 24, 2021, at home.
Teresa gave her heart to the Lord at an early age at the Houston Assembly of God church. Teresa grew up in Houston, Mo., and attended Houston High School. During high school she was a candy striper at TCMH and went on to get her CNA after graduating.
She married her soul mate Larry Gayer Jr. in 1983. Her daughter Keri Gayer came along in 1984, and Teresa was able to be a stay-at-home mom and babysit. Larry was working at Brown Shoe Co. and after a couple of transfers they ended up in Lexington, Tenn., in 1987. Their son Kevin was born not very long after. Teresa stayed at home to care for their children and on the side mowed lawns, cleaned homes and cared for the elderly.
When Kevin went to school she started to substitute teach, and volunteer in numerous areas in the community and at school.
She attended the Lexington Assembly of God and Union Baptist Church, in which she held many roles. She led worship, taught Sunday school, taught children’s church, was church secretary and sang in the choir. If a child wanted to go to church, she was there to pick them up. She believed everyone should have the chance to learn about Jesus.
The Caywood School offered her a job as a teachers aide after seeing how great she was with the kids. She worked from sunup to sundown with the before and after school program, headed up the summer food program and decorated the school for various holidays and school events. She helped with the AR program and had a passion that every child that wanted help, learned to read. Teresa worked one on one with the first-grade teachers and in any other area, they would let her help. She was recognized in 2018 with a Buddy Bench for all her hard work and dedication to Caywood School. Teresa loved all her students greatly and was able to be with them for 25+ years right up until she got sick.
Teresa also went on to get her CDL license, and tag team trucked with her husband Larry (mainly when school was out). This allowed her to see many parts of the United States and Canada.
In her spare time, she liked to crochet, read books, garden, decorate for holidays, cook, make desserts, cater, decorate cakes, put together puzzles, watch movies with Arieana and spend time with her family and friends.
She truly had a love for people especially her kids at school and church and they loved her in return. She had such a generous spirit and was a true inspiration of what friend should be. Her door was never closed to anyone that entered and as soon as you walked through you were treated like family no matter your past, she knew your potential. Though we will miss her with us here on earth we rejoice in knowing we will see her in her heavenly body once again.
She was preceded in death by her father Dewaine; grandparents, Thurman and Ruth Dungian, and Loys and Imogene Daniel; auntie Delaine; and father-in-law, Larry Gayer Sr.
She is survived by her husband, Larry of 38 years who resides in Lexington, Tenn.; daughter, Keri Gayer (special friend Thomas) and Kevin (Cameron) Gayer of Lexington, Tenn.; her mother, Joyce of Houston, Mo.; two sisters, Julie (Dennis) Collins of Villa Ridge and Amy (Andrew) Christeson of Houston, Mo.; mother-in-law, Susan Gayer of Houston, Mo.; grandchildren, Arieana, Brayden and Issac; many brothers and sisters-in-law; many nieces, nephews, other cherished family members; friends and Caywood School family and students.
In lieu of flowers the family requests donations be made through Reeds Chapel, for Caywood schools to purchase AR books in memory of Teresa.
Funeral services are 10 a.m. Tuesday, Dec. 28, 2021, at the Caywood School in Lexington, Tenn. Family viewing will be at 9 a.m. Wednesday, Dec. 29, 2021, with graveside services at 10 a.m. at the Brown Hill Cemetery in Houston, Mo. Burial is under the direction of Evans Funeral Home, Houston.