Gary Calvin Ainsworth, age 80, of Excelsior Springs, Missouri, passed away at home on Friday, January 26, 2017, surrounded by his family. Gary was the oldest of five siblings, born March 4, 1937 to Oscar and Clastine Ainsworth (Goe) in Oklahoma City, Okla. He was a 1955 graduate of Polo High School. He served in the U.S. Navy from 1955-1959 and in the U.S. Army National Reserves from 1959-1963; he was also a long-standing member of the VFW in Excelsior Springs. Gary married Lela Mae McBee on September 25, 1959 and they enjoyed 58 years of marriage; together they have two sons, Randall Lee (1965) and Gary Don (1968). He retired after 40 years with Ford Motor Company in 2000, where he earned the nickname “Crash”. He enjoyed racing, spending time with friends and family, and watching westerns on TV. He was a fraternal brother of both the Elks Lodge and Eagles Lodge of Excelsior Springs. He was also a long-time member of Central Racing Boosters (CARB) and was honored to be inducted into the CARB Hall of Fame in 2017. His love for racing was handed down to his sons, who continue the family tradition today.
Gary is survived by his wife, Mae; son, Gary Don and his significant other, Tami Foster; son, Randy and his wife, Dana; granddaughter Erica Mercer (Ainsworth) and her husband, Chris, and future great grandson Aiden Mercer, all of Excelsior Springs. He is also survived by his younger siblings, Kay Smith, Concord, NH, Nancy Stephens, Mineral Wells, Texas, Sandra Smith, Blue Springs, Mo., and Robert Ainsworth and his wife, Cindy, Wichita, Kans.; along with many nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Oscar and Clastine in 1963, his father-in-law, Claude McBee in 1964, and his mother-in-law, Bertha McBee in 1996.
Visitation and a celebration of life service will be held on Saturday, February 3, 2018, at Bross and Spidle Funeral Home in downtown Excelsior Springs. Visitation will be from 10:00 to 11:30 a.m., with the service directly following. Friends and family will have the opportunity to share their memories of Gary at the service if they wish. In lieu of flowers, Gary requested donations to the Elks Lodge or Eagles Lodge of Excelsior Springs.
Our Sincere Condolences
I used to cut Gary’s hair and he raced with my late husband, Kenny Baker. My condolences to the family.