Passed from us peacefully to be with her eternal Lord and Savior on Thursday, August 22, 2013 at her home in Winston. By her side was her husband of 64 years, Albert Hooten, and family members of three generations. She lived 86 wonderful years and enjoyed life to the fullest. Mary was a faithful wife, a loving mother of four, the greatest grandmother to 15 and gramma great to 20.
Mary was born in Ft. Riley, Kansas on February 20, 1927 to William and Edith Sullivan, and came to Roseburg in 1935 with her parents and one brother, Bill Sullivan. She attended Roseburg schools, was a cheerleader and graduated in 1946. Mary was a long-distance telephone operator after high school. She began dating and eventually married the high school quarterback, Al Hooten on October 10, 1948.
During the 1950’s, she had four children, two girls and two boys. As a busy wife and Mother in the 60’s, she found time to do lots of volunteer work in the schools as her children signed her up for every activity. Mary was a homeroom mom, PTA person, and Cub Scout den mother. She worked as a cook in the kitchens at both the Dillard Elementary School and the Civil Bend School, brought home the ‘Wacky Cake’recipe which her family still loves today.
Mary was the organist at the Assembly of God Church on Nash Street in Roseburg for many years. It was there that her family recognized her gift of serving as she was always cooking food for others. Her cooking talents were well-known at church suppers and other social events. Every Sunday after church there were guests for dinner in her home. Mary was famous for her carrot cake and potato salad. If there was a BBQ or family event, she was always asked to make one or both. In 1972, the Wildlife Safari opened in Winston and she became one of the first docents. She could make the Gibbon monkeys talk with her to the enjoyment of park visitors. Mary is the only person to have an elephant want to climb into the car in which she was riding.
Mary became a grandmother in 1973 and a great-grandmother in 1994. She was the ‘newspaper’ of the family, keeping everyone informed of family activities. She never missed a family event from birthdays to anniversaries, sporting events to graduations, recitals and programs, and was always ready to greet a new grandchild or great-grandchild. All 15 of her grandchildren knew her love of board or card games. Going to gramma’s house meant food and fun!
Some of her hobbies were cooking, knitting, crocheting and playing the piano. In recent years, Mary was an active member of the seniors group in Winston and enjoyed BUNCO and playing BINGO weekly with many friends.
Mary now resides for eternity in Heaven, leaving behind her husband, Al Hooten; four children and their spouses: Peggy and Rick Fowler of Oroville, CA; Kathy and John James of Winston, OR; James and Beverly Hooten of Lookingglass, OR; Dan and Jeannie Hooten of Corvallis MT; 15 grandchildren and 20 great-grandchildren. Mary is also survived by her brother, Bill Sullivan; sister-in-law, Peg Hooten; and by numerous nieces and nephews.
A celebration of Mary’s life is planned for Saturday, September 21, 2013 at 2 pm at the Winston Community Centers Grand Room. Arrangements are under the direction of Taylor’s Family Chapel.