Gene Louis Rainey, 84, died peacefully at his home in Athens, Texas, on Wednesday, January 19, 2022. He was born on June 20, 1937, in Commerce, Texas, the son of Russell Holderness Rainey and Gladys Hilda (Wise) Rainey.
Gene attended Commerce High School, graduating with the class of 1956. Following graduation, he enlisted in the Army National Guard. He was stationed at Fort Polk, Louisiana. After several years of service, he was honorably discharged in 1962. As an only child, Gene was surrounded by many aunts and uncles who loved him and gave him a lot of attention. He was a lifelong Baptist, having been baptized on November 24, 1946. He was a member of the Masonic Lodge in Commerce. Gene was always interested in auto mechanics and began his career as a mechanic following his military service. Eventually, Gene opened his own shop, Gene’s Paint and Body Shop, in Commerce. He loved fast cars and racing at the Super Bowl Speedway outside Greenville. Many lifelong friends were made at the track. These friends shared his love of fast cars. Gene’s car was named “Black Widow.”
Left to cherish Gene’s memory are his children, Gena Evans and husband, Jimmy, of Cumby, Steven Rainey and wife, Malaina, of Merit, and Michelle Smith and husband, Tony of Wills Point; step-son, Casey Tuttle and wife, Laura, of Athens; grandchildren, Justin Evans, Joseph Evans, Andrew Rainey, Jacob Rainey, Melea Luke, Will Smith, Allie Smith and Witt Smith; great grandchildren, Jackson Evans, Jace Evans, Jessie Evans, Jayden Evans, Jett Evans, Jenson Evans, Kacen Luke, Kynley Luke, Aliyah Luke, Avery Rainey, Emery Rainey, Landrie Rainey, Raelynn Rainey and Brandt Rainey; the mother of his children, Loyce Helton.
Gene was preceded in death by his parents, Russell, and Hilda Rainey and his longtime companion, Sandra Tuttle.
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