Hazel, the oldest of ten siblings, grew up in the Rocky Branch community, graduating from Houston High School in 1939. Hazel worked her way through high school. While in high school she met her lifelong sweetheart, Stanley. They were united in marriage on March 2, 1940, in Houston, and they enjoyed 73 years together. Stanley and Hazel lived briefly in the Plum Valley community moving to the farm in the Clara community in 1942.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Stanley W. Hicks; her parents, Robert and Helen Miller; three brothers, James “JC” Clayton, Raymond Roy “Bud”, and Carroll Lloyd “Moe” Miller; three sisters, Gladys Marie Revels, Geneva Bernice Smith, and Lucretia Elizabeth “Pat” Lewis; a brother-in-law, John Lewis; one daughter, Rita D. Peek; one son-in-law, Eddie Moore; and one grandson, Donald Stevenson.
She is survived by her children, Richard L. Hicks and wife Pat of Houston, Rowena L. Moore of Cabool, Missouri, Rose M. Ward of Houston, and son-in-law Richard Peek of Peculiar, Missouri; her brother, Robert “Bob” Miller, and wife Kay of Houston; two sisters, Erma Lee Gaddy of Shawnee Mission, Kansas, and Joyce Kay Slatner and husband John of Salem, Wisconsin;, nine grandchildren, Leigh Ann (Hicks) Myers and husband James of Lebanon, Missouri, David Stevenson and wife Amy of Peculiar, Michael Moore of Houston, Dana (Hicks) Hart and husband David of Knoxville, Tennessee, Terry Moore and wife Sharon of Houston, Dr. Raquel (Ward) Morrow and husband Doug and Rashel (Ward) Bussard and husband Dan of Nixa, Missouri, Joey Moore and wife Julie and Ronda (Ward) Cook and husband Jonathan of Houston; eighteen great-grandchildren and ten great-great-grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.
Hazel was very involved in community activities, starting the first county 4-H club with her neighbors and friends. This later became a non-denominational Sunday school and later Clara Baptist Church. She was a member of Houston Garden Club and Rebekah Lodge for many years. She was an adamant supporter of her children and grandchildren’s activities, going to every event possible. She was a big believer in, if you started something, you finished it.
Hazel really enjoyed living on Big Piney River with its sights and sounds. She enjoyed swimming in the evening with her children, sometimes by lantern light. She was an avid gardener and provider for her family. She always had a large garden and enjoyed canning and preserving fruits, vegetables, and meats. She was very well known by many as an awesome cook and enjoyed teaching her children and grandchildren to cook. She had one requirement — if you came to work on the farm you were going to eat before you left.
Hazel was employed for several years by University of Missouri Extension as a soil technician in Texas County. She also served a term as Piney Township assessor.
Hazel accepted Jesus as her Lord and Savior at a young age and was a charter member of Clara Baptist Church. Hazel attended church at Clara as long as her health permitted. She was always involved in the church’s activities and served as church clerk, secretary/treasurer, and taught various Sunday school classes for many years. Hazel’s absence will leave a huge void with her family and friends, however they are comforted to know that she is finally home with Stanley in the presence of their heavenly father.
Memorials may be made to Wolford Cemetery or Texas County Hospice of Care, in lieu of flowers.
Services were held Monday, February 29, 2016, at 11:00 a.m. at Evans Funeral Home with Paul Murray officiating. Burial was in Wolford Cemetery under the direction of Evans Funeral Home. Pallbearers were David Stevenson, Leigh Ann Myers, Michael Moore, Dana Hart, Terry Moore, Dr. Raquel Morrow, Rashel Bussard, Joey Moore and Ronda Cook