Longtime Delta County resident John Wilburn Hawkins Jr. died Wednesday, Dec. 28, 2016, at Horizons Care Center in Eckert. He was 98.
A funeral service will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 7, at the Eckert Presbyterian Church, with interment to follow at the Cedaredge Cemetery.
Mr. Hawkins was born in Eckert Aug. 17, 1918, to John Wilburn Hawkins Sr. and Cora Etta (Adams) Hawkins.
On Nov. 4, 1942, he married Kathleen Belle Rowell in Berkeley, Calif.
He was a seaman in the U.S. Navy during World War II, from 1942-1945. He was part of the gunnery crew in the Battle of Guadalcanal, later a sonar operator, and completed his service as a cook in Miami, Fla. He was a member of the VFW.
He was interested in making the community a better place to live, particularly with regard to providing adequate irrigation water and safe drinking water. He was an active member of the Overland Ditch and Reservoir Company, Redlands Mesa Water Users Association, North Fork Water Conservancy District and the Upper Surface Creek Domestic Water Users Association. He was a founding member of both the Redlands Mesa WUA and the USCDWUA. He was elected as a Delta County commissioner in 1972 and served through 1984.
He is survived by his son, Dan (Helen) Hawkins of Redlands Mesa; daughters, Sharon MacKendrick of Milan, N.M., and Laura Donovan of Delta; a sister, Esther Barrett of Cedaredge; six grandchildren; two adopted grandchildren; eight great-grandchildren; and one great-great-granddaughter.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Kathleen; sisters, Dora Ashurst, Helen Buff, Lily May Cotten, Hazel Frey, Margaret McNutt and Ruth Rowell; brothers, Bruce Hawkins, Floyd Hawkins, Charles Hawkins, Roy Hawkins, and Kenneth Hawkins; and a great-granddaughter, Danielle Ziegler.
Taylor Funeral Service and Crematory is handling the arrangements.
Visit the internet obituary and sign the online guest registry at www.taylorfuneralservice.com.
On Tuesday, Sept. 11, the Delta County Board of Commissioners called a special meeting to consider the board's response to the Bureau of Land Management's preliminary Environmental Assessment (EA) concerning the lease parcels proposed for the December BLM sale.
Several people from the North Fork were present to provide input.