Hazel Shelton Abernethy

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Hazel Shelton Abernethy died March 22, 2012 in Nacogdoches. Hazel was born May 20, 1927, in Nacogdoches the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Robert Shelton, who had come to Nacogdoches in 1923 as a faculty family for the opening of Stephen F. Austin State Teachers College. Coach Bob Shelton was SFA's first coach and athletic director and later was dean of men. Hazel was blessed with a long, rich, full life and with kin and friends who loved her dearly. She was grateful that she was able to do everything that she had wanted to do -- have children, teach, act and have cats and dogs in the house. Hazel's last discernible words were "I love you," and all she wanted for a eulogy was someone to say "thank you" for her joyful trip through life. Hazel went to SFA's Demonstration School through junior high. She graduated in 1944 from Nacogdoches High School, where she was student body president. She graduated from SFA in 1948, where she was Miss SFA and Carolyn Thompson Hill Award recipient. She received her M.A. from SFA in 1971 and taught in SFA's history department. At one time, Hazel was teaching history at SFA, her husband was teaching English, and her son, Robert, was teaching geology. All of her children attended SFA, and Hazel was a devoted alumna. Hazel married Francis Edward Abernethy, her high school sweetheart, June 12, 1948. She is survived by her husband and children, Luanna Cherry Cole and husband, Charles, Robert Morris Abernethy and wife, Kim, Sarah Elizabeth "Deedy" Abernethy and friend, Todd Weidner, Margaret Leslie "Maggie" Abernethy-Duffin and husband, John, and Benjamin Talbot Abernethy and wife, Penny. By her grandchildren, Elizabeth Davis Reeves, Sgt. Edward Cole, Leslie Cole, Patrick Abernethy, Sarah Abernethy and Jack Duffin. And by her great-grandchildren, Brittany and Justin Cole and Dylan and Abigail Reeves. Hazel is also survived by her sister, Dorothy Shelton Morgan and the Morgan family. Hazel's devotion was to her children, husband, home, dogs and cats (in that order), but she was happily and continually involved in other civic ventures. She was a member of her treasured Methodist Circle and member of the Heritage Club since 1965. She was in Nacogdoches Women's Hall of Fame, she served two terms as president of the City Federation of Women's Clubs, and she was named as a Distinguished Alumna of NHS. Hazel was a gifted speaker and presented programs throughout her professional career. During the 50th anniversary of World War II Hazel wrote "The Home Front: 1941-1945," which was published by the Nacogdoches County Chamber of Commerce. The article was later selected by a national high school textbook company and was published with her audiotape and used for many years in the U.S. and by the armed forces schools abroad. Hazel loved an audience -- her children and husband, her students, strangers in an elevator -- and her favorite extra-familial activity was her involvement in Sarah McMullan's Lamp-Lite Theatre. She began her 30-odd years of acting, building and back-staging with Lamp-Lite in 1970s and was a devoted Lamp -Liter ever since. Hazel loved the theater, and when she visited London, she and Ab went to a play every night, with a frequent matinee. Hazel loved to travel, as long as she had clean sheets, tea and crumpets at 10, and an "arf pint lager" after the show. She loved touring Australia, all of Europe, particularly Italy, but her traveling-heart's home was Ireland and the British Isles, and ultimately, London. Hazel was the hearth and heartbeat of her home and her family and was a much-loved and a much-loving wife, mother and grandmother. Visitation will be from 6 until 8 p.m. Saturday, March 24, 2012, at the Cason-Monk Metcalf Funeral Home. Services will be at 2 p.m. Sunday, March 25, 2012, in the chapel in Cason-Monk Metcalf Funeral Home. Burial will be at Sunset Memorial Park. Memorial donations can be made to any of the several Alzheimer's Research foundations and to Heart to Heart Hospice for their care and support. Pallbearers will be her grandchildren, Elizabeth Davis Reeves, Sgt. Edward Cole, Leslie Cole, Patrick Abernethy, Sarah Abernethy and Jack Duffin. Online condolences may be offered at www.casonmonk-metcalf.com. Arrangements are under the care and direction of Cason Monk-Metcalf Funeral Directors.
Published in The Daily Sentinel from Mar. 24 to Mar. 25, 2012
Hazel Shelton Abernethy
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www.casonmonk-metcalf.com.
Arrangements under the direction of:
Cason Monk-Metcalf Funeral Directors
5400 North Street | Nacogdoches, TX 75965 | (936) 564-7333
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