Dorothy Cooke Hayes

Obituary
2 entries
  • "My prayers are with you."
    - Virgie Nixon
  • "I'm so sorry to hear about Dorothy. She was a remarkable..."
    - Sandy Evatt
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Dorothy Cooke Hayes was born in Bradshaw, Texas, on October 13, 1925, but she moved to Baytown, Texas, as a child, and spent most of her life in Baytown, where she was an active member of Memorial Baptist Church. She died June 5, 2012, in Calder Woods, a retirement community in Beaumont, Texas. She was a graduate of Robert E. Lee High School, where she played the drums in the marching band. She attended Lee College at a time few women had degrees, and this provided essential advantages as she sought employment. Education played a significant role for her, and at three important stages in her life, she attended Lee College: after high school; to seek opportunity for a career change in mid-life; and for enrichment during retirement. In her fifties, she became a trailblazer for women in the laboratories of the Exxon refinery. She was a life-long believer in the power of education to change lives. She established the Dorothy Cooke Hayes Award at Lee College, for the Outstanding Honors Student, to honor those who, powered by the same belief, choose and excel in honors classes. She was committed to the performing arts, serving for two decades as a volunteer usher for the Alley Theatre, where she took her three grandchildren to usher with her and expose them to live theatre. She remained a devotee of the theatre her entire life. The fine arts also contributed to her retirement years as she developed expertise in the re-creation of the world's classic porcelain dolls. She was preceded in death by her parents, Mary Smith Cooke and William Albert Cooke, and four siblings, William Albert Cooke, Jr., Charles Edwin Cooke, Addie Belle Cooke Bailey, and Allene Cooke Butler Dorothy is survived by her two daughters; Ann Hayes Hasselmo and her husband, Nils and Barbara Hayes Breaux and her husband, Tommy. She has three grandchildren: Lorna Tarver Hubbard and her husband, Ray, Christopher Robert Tarver and his wife, Brandi, and Meredith Die Levine and her husband, Aaron. She was fortunate enough to have three great grandchildren: Alicia Lynn Hubbard, John Lawrence Levine, and Ainsley Paige Levine. Three sisters also survive her: DeLoise Cooke Miller, Flora Mae Cooke Nickerson, and Ellen Cooke Flynt and her husband, John. Her two daughters and three grandchildren lived her dream of a college education, and her great granddaughter, Alicia Hubbard, begins Sam Houston State University this fall. A visitation will take place on Friday, June 8, 2012, at 10:00 a.m., at Navarre Funeral Home in Baytown, with a funeral service to follow at 11:00 a.m. She will be laid to rest in Memory Gardens. Memorial gifts for the Dorothy Cooke Hayes Endowed Award for the Outstanding Honors Student can be made through Pam Warford, Executive Director, Lee College Foundation, P.O. Box 818, Baytown, TX, 77522-0818, phone: 281-425-6361. To view the online obituary or to post a tribute for the family, go to: navarrefuneralhome.com. Arrangements are under the direction and personal care of Navarre Funeral Home & Cremation Services, 2444 Rollingbrook Dr., Baytown, TX 77521, (281) 422 - 8111.

Published in The Beaumont Enterprise on June 7, 2012
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