Gloria Nell Darby

Gloria Nell Darby passed away on April 15, 2024, surrounded by her family. She was born on January 28, 1949, to Howard Cochran and Gwendolyn Harrison Cochran of Raytown, Missouri. Gloria graduated from Raytown High School in 1967. She later went on to pursue her dream of becoming a nurse by earning an RN degree from Park University, where she was honored as the valedictorian of the school’s first ever RN graduating class in 1988.

Gloria was a lifelong lover of the arts. She admired opera, theater, and visual arts, but she made her deep passion for music known to all. Her gift and her instrument were her voice. She sang live in three-part harmony with her sisters. She sang in choirs at church, even having the opportunity to sing solos in Handel’s “Messiah” twice. Gloria would volunteer to sing an impromptu love song in a wedding, or a song of praise at a funeral. She was outspokenly grateful for the gift of music in her life.

Gloria took pride in being the best mom, grandma, great grandma, sister, aunt, nurse, and friend. She had the ability to make everyone feel like they were her favorite, even if you were a stranger. Gloria was known for spreading joy wherever she went whether it be singing without regard, cracking witty jokes, or sharing inspirational words with a little bit of tough love sprinkled in. Gloria’s laughter, love, and voice filled any room she was in. She loved deeply and will be missed greatly.

Gloria’s legacy will be continued by her children: Andrea Murphy (Joe), Marshall Darby (Sarah), and Matthew Darby (Cynthia); grandchildren: Courtney, Rebecca, Ryan, Violet, Graceanne, Chanton, Creedance, Luke, and Harlan; great grandson: Kai; sisters: Kathleen and Deborah; nieces: Sara and Brooke; great-nephews: Drew and Jack; great-niece: Stella; and her beloved dog, Sugar.

A visitation will be held on Saturday, April 27th from 11-12 with a memorial service to follow at Unity Village Chapel in Lees Summit, MO from 12-1. Attire is “Petals and Pearls”. Wear your floral print, bright colors, or pearls. After the service, the family welcomes you to a celebration of Gloria’s life at the home of Marshall and Sarah Darby. Food and drinks provided.



Floral deliveries:

Unity Village Atrium Chapel

200 Unity Cir N

Unity Village, MO 64086

Memorial gifts:

Band of Angels

11890 West 135th Street

Overland Park, KS 66221


  1. Rhonda Berlowitz on April 23, 2024 at 6:38 am

    Gloria was, and is, a songbird legend…one time in KC with our friend Judy, Gloria surprised Judy with an impromptu “happy birthday” serenade….her joy will be forever and always

  2. Rose Hagemann on April 23, 2024 at 8:09 pm

    I met Gloria when I worked at research Belton Hospital. She was going through nursing school. She always would ask me if she could hang start my IVs, give my antibiotics, administer blood to my patients, etc. She always wanted that experience as a nursing student. I was happy to help and we quickly became friends. Gloria had an infectious laugh, and she was very dear to me.
    Andrea, I remember her bringing you over to my house several times. And you would show my daughter Annie how to do cartwheels and backflips in our backyard in Belton. Gloria had such an infectious, and always a fun person to be around. I know you will miss her terribly, but then who can compete with Heaven!! God bless you!!!
    Rose Hagemann

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