Laverta Ethel Hawkins, daughter of James Walter Gray and Ethel Swaim Gray was born on November 19, 1918 in Taylor County Iowa and passed from this life on November 15, 2013 at Parkdale Care Center in Maryville Missouri, four days before her 95th birthday.
She graduated from Hopkins High School in 1937 and married Frank Oren Riley on May 22, 1937 in Grant City, Missouri. To this union three sons were born: Maurice Dean, Larry Gene and Frank Walter Riley.
Her first husband Frank, was killed on March 26, 1943 in a truck accident in Oregon. Laverta returned to Hopkins, Missouri. On January 20, 1945 she married Milo Wilson. Together they operated the Wilson Supply Store and the Wilson Grocery Store in Hopkins, Missouri for many years. Milo passed away in January, 1975. She married James Hawkins in Mesa, Arizona on January 26, 1980. They enjoyed traveling, living in Arizona in the winter months and spending time with friends and relatives. Laverta was a fifty year member of the Order of Eastern Star and held several offices over the years. In addition, she was a Worthy Advisor for the Rainbow girls. She was a member of the Hopkins Christian Church.
Laverta was raised during the Great Depression and was the oldest of five daughters. She learned to work hard with her dad. She kept the same work ethic her entire life and instilled the same in her sons. Laverta faced many obstacles in her lifetime. She was widowed at the age of 24 with two young sons and expecting a third one. In 1975 she was again widowed and left with a business to run.
Those relatives who preceded Laverta in death were her parents, husbands: Frank Riley, Milo Wilson and Jim Hawkins, brother John Harvey Gray, sisters Irma Gill, Marcella O'Brien, Emily Arieta Gordon and Irene Schwindt, her brothers-in-law, step-daughter Linda (Hawkins) Villar, granddaughter Lisa (Riley) Willey and great-grandson Phillip Landess.
She leaves to cherish her memory sons Maurice (wife Donna) Riley, Hopkins, Missouri, Larry (wife Barbara) Riley, Greenfield, Iowa and Frank (wife Dianne) Riley, Osceola, Iowa, step-son Duane (wife Beverly) Wilson, Winnemucca, Nevada and cousin Theda Bennett, Sun City Center, Florida. In addition, she is survived by 14 grandchildren, several great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren, as well as nieces and nephews. She enjoyed spending time with her family. They were the love of her life.
Celebration of Life will be held Saturday, November 23, 2013, at 10:30 am at the Hopkins, Missouri First Christian Church.
Memorials may be directed to SSM Hospice, 2016 South Main Street, Maryville, Missouri, 64468.