Tommy Ray Hawkins, of Arlington, Texas, formerly of Milan, took his final flight from this world on July 1, 2014, after a valiant struggle with prostate cancer. Visitation and services will be held at Wade Funeral Home, Arlington, on Monday, July 7, beginning at 10:30 a.m. Burial will follow at Dallas National Cemetery. Tommy was born to Fred and Alice Hawkins on Jan. 28, 1933, in Red Boiling Springs, Tenn. After high school graduation, Tommy joined the Army and served as a radio operator during the Korean War. In 1955, he married the girl of his dreams, Anna Sue Wood, and moved to Rock Island. There he worked as a supervisor at John Deere Plow & Planter Works, retiring in 1985. He was a member of Bethany Baptist Church, the American Legion and the VFW. A lover of excitement and risk, Tommy began his private pilot adventure in 1963, becoming a member instructor and eventually manager of the Quad-City Flying Country Club. He owned Tom-A-Hawk Flying Inc., flying for business and pleasure in his beloved Cessna 210 until failing health stopped him at the age of 75. He also enjoyed playing a good game of euchre, the annual Hawkins fishing trip from Illinois to Toledo Bend and the fish fries that followed, golf, water skiing, hanging at the QC airport with his pilot buddies and flying anywhere at any time with anybody. His love for family was immeasurable. We will miss his laughter, hugs, generosity and unconditional love. Tommy leaves behind his wife of 59 years, Anna Sue; daughters, Karen (Alan) Phillips, Kennedale, Texas, and Melanie (Kent) Wheeler, Burleson, Texas; six grandchildren; four great-grandchildren; brother, Charles, Illinois; sister, Nancy, Tennessee; and several very dear nieces and nephews. He was devastated by the death of his son, Shawn, in 2002 and was also preceded in death by two brothers in recent years. The family wishes to thank Freedom Hospice for their care and compassion since March, as well as wonderful family and dearest friends in Illinois who have cared, visited, prayed for and loved Tommy during his lifetime. He has met his Savior face to face.
Today is Wednesday, July 30, the 211th day of 2014. There are 154 days left in the year. 1864 -- 150 years ago: After Sept. 1, every small box of matches will be required to have a 3 cent duty Lincoln stamp on it, and every large box will be one cent for every 100 matches. 1889 -- 125 years ago: Rock Island residents had contributed a total of $1,293 to the American Red Cross for the Johnstown flood relief fund. 1914 -- 100 years ago: Capt. Clark Means, new darkhorse twirler for the ARGUS staff, was in great form in his initial contest as a mound laborer. The result was that THE ARGUS trimmed the Union 6-5. 1939 -- 75 years ago: Hunter and Humprey Moody, young Decatur, Ill, brothers, lack only a few hours of establishing a new world light plane endurance record. 1964 -- 50 years ago: Gates of the 110th annual Mercer County Fair swing open tonight at Aledo for a full week of day and night activity. More that $36,000 will be paid in premiums and race purses. 1989 -- 25 years ago: The baseball field carved out of the cornfield near Dyersville, Iowa, continues to keep dreams alive for hundreds of visitors. Tourists from 26 state and France have visited Dan Lansing's farm to see the baseball diamond seen in the hit movie "Field of Dreams."