He was born to the late Aud and Martha (Campbell) Clay in Kennett. He served in WWII in the U.S. Army and was a part of the D-Day landing at Normandy.
Funeral services were held at Irby Funeral Home in Rector, Ark. Burial took place at Woodland Heights Cemetery.
Gene was preceded in death by his parents; his wife, Wanda German Clay; a daughter, Vicki Jean Clay; a brother, Frank Clay; a twin sister, Nadine Clay Cummins; and a great-nephew, David Faulkner of St. Amont, La.
He will be missed by his care giver and niece, Pat Faulkner Paddock, and her husband, Bob; two nephews, Denny Clay of Golconda, Ill., and Aaron Morris, and wife, Edie, of Paragould, Ark.; a great-nephew and wife, Clay and Deborah Faulkner, of Murfreesboro, Tenn.; his church family at the First Assembly of God Church and many friends and other relatives.
A special friend to him was his church pastor, Jim Davis.
Gene and his brother Frank owned and operated a grocery, feed, and gas station on First Street for many years. He was active in the community and served on the city council for almost two full terms. He then sold the store and moved to Flint, Mich.
He was in the insurance business for eight years then went to work for GM for 18 years until his retirement in 1983.
After his wife passed away, he moved to Modesto, Calif., with his daughter until his move to Kennett in 2005 after the passing of his daughter.
He loved California and had many friends that he joined almost every morning at the local McDonald's. He has kept in touch with most of them.
He came back home to Kennett.