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Obituary for Joe Hawkes

Joe Hawkes entered eternal rest peacefully on March 20, 2017 in Elizabethtown, KY with family by his side. He was the youngest of 5 children born to the late Mack Toy and Ida B. Hawkes in Wellsville, VA on March 7, 1919. He was preceded in death by his 4 siblings, Esther Conway, Harry Lee Hawkes, Bernard Hawkes, and Laura Hawkes. His wife, Henrietta Hawkes and grandson Michael Brooks, also preceded him in death.

Joe was raised in Spainville, VA along with his family and was known throughout the area for his love of people, and was affectionally nicknamed “Finny.” He attended school in Nottoway County and at an early age joined Cedar Hill Baptist Church. He was drafted into the Army and served his country for 4 years serving in Africa, Fort Lewis Washington and Italy before being honorably discharged. He went back to Nottoway County and worked at Camp Pickett and married the love of his life, Henrietta Hawkes (Ritta) on February 25, 1945. He worked at Camp Pickett until their closure in 1946, where he was offered the opportunity to move to Fort Belvoir, VA. Finny and Henrietta moved to Washington, DC where they lived for 30 years. He attended Emmanuel Baptist Church under watch care and worked in several capacities until he moved back to Blackstone in 1977.

Once back in Blackstone, he reunited with Cedar Hill Baptist Church, under the leadership of Rev. William Prince. On January 1991 he attended a service with the then Pastor William Bell; during that service he heard a message from Romans 13:11-12 that completely transformed his life forever. He recommitted his life to serving the Lord and a new fire was lit in him. In January 1992 Pastor William Bell ordained him a deacon, where he served faithfully until he moved to KY. He served Cedar Hill as a faithful deacon, trustee, and sang in the Men’s Chorus.

He was known throughout the area for his ability to recite the entire 27 Psalm by memory. He would often say “if you have your Bible’s, open to Psalm 27 and make sure that I say it right”. He loved to attend revivals, programs, and services at the local area churches. He never met a stranger and lived his life as an example for the younger generation. He was always searching out ways to help others, and lived by the motto of treating everyone right.

Finny was a devoted husband, father, brother, uncle, grandfather, great-grandfather, and friend. He was always the one making sure that everyone else was happy and did not need a thing. His compassion for people always found him in the company of someone, young or old. Finny loved to play cards and would rather play than eat or sleep. Anytime he could play would bring the biggest smile to his face. He and Henrietta lived a rich and rewarding life, traveling, spending time with family and friends and serving their Heavenly Father together.

Once he was unable to live home alone, he made the hardest choice to give up everything he worked for and knew to move closer to his daughter in Kentucky. Once there he made new friends and made an impact on the people at Atria Assisted Living/Retirement Facility. Never the one to complain or whine about his lot in life, he was happy and content in his new home. He loved to spend time with his great grandkids and would often say that they would wear him out, however, Papa Finny loved every single minute of being with them.

Deacon Joe Hawkes leaves to cherish his memory: his dedicated & loving children, Joanne & Samuel Wilson of Vine Grove, KY and Harry & Carla Hawkes of Petersburg, VA., 5 grandchildren, Ebony, Delaney, Latoya (Albert), Tihairra, and Jamaal and 7 great-children, Lataja, Zyen, Jasmine, Isaiah, D’Yoni, Aria and Portlynn. One sister-in-law, Lucille Turner of Springfield, VA; two nieces Verna Rhoades of Blackstone, VA, Roslyn Davis of Baltimore, MD and one nephew George of Baltimore, MD. Special friends, Donnie & Bobbi Wright of Glenn Heights, TX. A multitude of nieces and nephews who loved him dearly, along with many cousins and friends alike.

Funeral Services Saturday, March 25, 2017 at 1:00 p.m. at Cedar Hill Baptist Church, Blackstone. Interment church cemetery.

W.E. Hawkes & Son Funeral Home of Blackstone in charge of arrangements.


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