March 29, 1938 ~ December 26, 2021

Born in: Asheville, NC
Resided in: Waynesville, NC

She dined with a president and now she rests with God. Colleen Redmond Gurley, outstanding teacher, cherished mother, and beloved family member joined her husband, Bill (William Quinton Gurley, Sr.), in God’s eternal resting place on December 26, 2021.

Colleen was a vibrant and brilliant woman who left a remarkable legacy to all lives she touched. She is survived by her son, W. Quinton Gurley, Jr. (Stephanie), her grandchildren, Will (Katie), Lauren (Nick), and Caroline (Justin), her family, sister, Sherry Rotondo (Frank), and brother, Michael Redmond (Kathy). She is predeceased by her father, George Clifford Redmond, her mother, Carmen Ballard Redmond, and her brother, Ronald Redmond (Cathy).

For more than 30 years, Mrs. Gurley shaped the next generation of leaders. She was a proud graduate of the University of North Carolina at Charlotte with a degree in mathematics. As a native of Asheville, she also attended Asheville-Biltmore College where she was recognized for both her leadership and intelligence. She was a legendary math teacher at Hixson High School in Hixson, Tennessee. Colleen was frequently recognized for her incredible teaching skills, her in-depth understanding of higher mathematics, and equally important, how to weave the two. While she was awarded Teacher of the Year, her real trophy was her students. Several of her students earned a perfect score on the SAT, others were accepted to prestigious colleges, but all her students were made better by a teacher who championed them to problem solve and think on their own. Colleen was a stickler for high standards and critical thinking, wanting the best for her students and getting the best out of them.

Colleen holds a place of high honor in the minds and hearts of her family, as well as her large and endearing circle of appreciative friends. She enriched lives with her listening skills and invaluable advice. Her dry sense of humor and compassion would lead you through the hard days, and her striking and twinkling blue eyes provided comfort every day. To be known by her was a blessing.

In 2003, Colleen returned to the mountains she so dearly loved and tended to her garden in Waynesville. Whether it was her yard, with her family, or among her friends, Colleen dedicated her life to cultivating this Earth and the people on it. It has been said that great people plant trees they will never sit under. For 83 years, Colleen Redmond Gurley joyously worked, and now she peacefully rests. We are refreshed in the shade of her labors and steadfast love.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that gifts be made to: The William Q. Gurley Scholarship at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, 615 McCallie Ave., Dept. 6806, Chattanooga, TN 37403,

A graveside memorial service will be held on Thursday, December 30 at 11:00 a.m. at Ashelawn Gardens of Memory in Asheville, North Carolina.


Funeral Home Assisting The Family:

Groce Funeral Home - Patton Ave.
1401 Patton Ave.
Asheville, NC 28806


Graveside Service: December 30, 2021 11:00 am

Ashelawn Gardens of Memory
901 Aiken Road
Asheville, NC 28804

(828) 645-6915

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  1. I am so sorry for your loss. Colleen was a wonderful woman. She was an inspiration to me a a child and young man. She was influential in my life by not only helping me with math but life and life skills. I am praying for Quinn and the whole family and am so sorry for your loss.

  2. With our sincerest sympathy. Colleen was a lovely lady, mother, grandmother and became a friend to those who knew her. We were both happy to have known her.

  3. I’m so sorry for your loss. Aunt Colleen was a wonderful lady. She loved her family dearly. Praying for you all.

  4. Mrs Gurley was a great math teacher and challenged her students to excel. She and Dr Gurley were also customers at M&J Food Market in Middle Valley.

  5. Mrs. Gurley was my favorite teacher in high school. When I have told people this over the years, they can’t believe it because I was not very good at math. She always went out of her way to not only help me, but all of her students. She was a wonderful lady.

  6. She was a wonderful math teacher. I learned more in her class than any class I have ever taken, and I have a Master’s Degree. May her memory be a blessing.

  7. We were so lucky to have known you! What a wonderful neighbor you were! Your gardens were magnificent and we thank you for sharing with us! Your life has been an incredible legacy.

  8. What a pleasure to have known Colleen..her wit and insight and beautiful smiling face. She will be greatly missed. Deepest sympathy to all the family.

  9. I am so sorry to hear of her passing. I truly regret I never had the privilege of being in her class. But I knew she was remarkable by knowing the son she raised. I am praying for the Gurleys.

  10. We were fortunate to have known you and have you for a neighbor- your wit and beautiful smile will be long remembered! What an amazing woman!

  11. Coleen was so supportive of her mother the last few years….she brought her to church, planted her neighborhood yard with flowers, gave her a yard party and invited the ladies in the Carman Redmond Sunday School Class. They both shined a divine love of Christ and people. Jeanne Stewart and Victory Baptist Church


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