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 Tuesday, July 22, the 203rd day of 2014. There are 162 days left in the year.
1864 -- 150 years ago: Everybody is invited to go on a moonlight excursion next Monday evening on the steamer New Boston. The trip will be from Davenport to Muscatine and back. 1889 -- 125 years ago: The mayor and bridge committee let a contract to the Clinton Bridge company for a $1,125 iron bridge across Sears canal near Milan. 1914 -- 100 years ago: Injunction proceedings to compel the Central Association to keep a baseball team in Rock Island for the remainder of the season were contemplated by some of the Rock Island fans, but they decided to defer action. 1939 -- 75 years ago: The first of the new and more powerful diesel engines built for the Rock Island Lines for the proposed Chicago-Denver run, passed thru the Tri-Cities this morning. 1964 -- 50 years ago: The Rock Island Rescue Mission is negotiating for the purchase of the Prince Hall Masonic Home located at 37th Avenue and 5th Street, Rock Island. 1989 -- 25 years ago: Quad Cities Container Terminal is being lauded as a giant business boon that will save several days and hundreds of dollars on each goods shipment to the coasts. The Quad Cities Container Terminal is the final piece of the puzzle that opens up increase access to world markets, Robert Goldstein said.