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Gayla Earlene and Gene Crain

Phone:  918-640-4421

EMail: rgcrain@att.net
Email: gayla@gaylaearlene.com

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From Distinguished Oklahomans -
by Victoria Lee

Gayla Earlene and Gene Crain

I met Gayla Earlene and her steel guitar playing husband Gene Crain in 2009 when I invited them to be on Making It Happen TV.  What a special couple and treat to be around.  They have one of those true love stories that began many years ago.

Gene was playing Rodeo dances around different towns in Oklahoma.  He happened to be preparing for a performance in the small town of Inola, Oklahoma, when he looked up and saw a girl come riding up on a horse.  His immediate thought was “that’s a beautiful girl.”  Of course, it didn’t take long before he introduced himself and a short time later they began dating each other.  The icing on the cake was when he found out she was a very talented singer, so without a second thought the band invited her to join their group.

Of course, Gene wouldn’t take the chance of losing this “beauty” so he eventually popped the question and they made a commitment to each other in marriage.

Gene grew up in a Pentecostal church and Gayla in a Baptist church with ties to the Assembly of God, so the spiritual roots were there for them both.  When they met, they were playing country music.  With her melodic voice, Gayla was making quite a name for herself as they continued to play gigs around the area.  No doubt they thought their lives were all planned, doing exactly what they enjoyed - performing in a country band.

The day came, when Gayla’s mother was diagnosed with cancer.  Being an only child, Gayla was extremely close to her mother - in fact, her and Gene lived right next door.  During her mother’s remaining days, she and Gayla spent numerous hours drawing as close as they could to the Lord.  Gayla said it’s been over twenty years since her mother passed and yet she still misses her and thinks of her almost every day.

Shortly after the passing of her mom she and Gene were performing once again in the town of Inola.  It was hard to explain as first, but Gayla started feeling even while she was on stage performing that she was no longer going to be singing secular music.  She confronted Gene with what she felt the Lord was showing her and he quickly confirmed to her that he was feeling the same way.  From that day forth, they formed a ministry and chose to sing only Christian music.  That decision may not be for everyone, because we are individuals and God deals with us separately.  However, for Gayla and Gene, God had a different plan than what they had visualized for themselves.

On the day of our interview when she and Gene stepped onto the stage to begin displaying their musical talent, I understood immediately why God would have directed them toward gospel music.  Gene is a seasoned performer on that steel guitar.  You very rarely see steel guitar players, but Gene has mastered his craft.  Together they have won several awards through the Christian Country Association.  If you ever have the opportunity to see them perform you'll want to repeat the experience over and over again.

© Victoria Lee