Edwin Davis Hawkins
June 24, 1933 ~ June 1, 2020
Edwin Davis Hawkins passed away on June 1, 2020 at his home in Blanding due to complications of pancreatic cancer. Graveside services for Edwin were held Thursday, June 4 and he was interred in the Blanding Cemetery next to his eternal sweetheart.
Edwin is preceded in death by his wife and beloved Betty Ann Bradford; his oldest son, Mitchel Davis; his youngest son, Kent Blain; by grandchildren Gregory Michael and Lisa Ann Excell, and Danelle Hawkins Mendoza; and by great-grandson Brandon Jacob Hawkins.
Edwin was born on June 24, 1933 in Blanding to Phillip Lawrence and Laura Elizabeth Brown Hawkins. He grew up with his brothers, Ormas, Phil, Gordon, and Stanley, and with his sisters, Loretta and Loraine. Edwin also had a brother, Don, who died as a young boy.
Edwin was a hard worker throughout his life, right from the time when as a young boy he herded cows to the fields in his bare feet and wearing his Oshkosh overalls.
His work ethic was a blessing in many ways and one of those ways was that he got to know Betty Ann Bradford as more than the girl who was close friends with his sister, Loretta.
Betty’s dad, Vet Bradford, built a tunnel through the Blue Mountains to bring water to the town of Blanding. When he was still a teenager, Edwin signed on to work on that tunnel, and over the days he worked, Betty became his sweetheart. Edwin always said that he worked for seven years for Betty in the eight months he worked for Vet.
On January 28, 1952, Betty’s 17th birthday, Edwin and Betty married in the Manti Utah Temple of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. They were married almost 67 years before Betty passed away on January 10, 2019.
Edwin and Betty had five children: Julia Ann Excell (Mike), Mitchel Davis, Edwin Bradford (Julie), Clark Wayne (Ann), and Kent Blain (Barbara).
They also had a foster daughter, Stephanie Jan Bergen, who became part of their family, along with her mother, Jane Navajo, and sister, Seraphina Bergen.
As an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Edwin served in many positions, including Elders Quorum President, Scout Master, Stake Missionary in the Aneth Area, and in the Stake Presidency.
He was in the first Temple Presidency in the Monticello Utah Temple and served as a temple worker for many years before and after.
He and Betty served as missionary temple workers at the Washington D.C. Temple, and on his weekends Edwin enjoyed travelling to Williamsburg, Appomattox Courthouse, and many other historical sites along the east coast.
Edwin held several jobs over the years. He hauled uranium ore from the mines up out of the steep canyons on roads so narrow that if one truck met another one, the truck closer to the bottom had to back down the canyon.
He worked at the gas station at the corner of Main and Center streets in Blanding back when it was full-service, and he pumped your gas and washed your windows.
He often held two or three jobs, such as when he worked at his TV shop, drove the garbage truck, and drove a school bus at the same time.
In the early 1970s, he went to work for the local telephone company and, although the phone company was purchased by bigger and bigger entities over the years, Edwin continued to do his usual exceptional job for Blanding and areas south.
Edwin owned the third 4-wheeler that came into Blanding. Riding that and later 4-wheelers with his brothers and with friends was one of his greatest pleasures.
He also enjoyed playing the guitar and singing, first with his brothers and sisters and later with his own family. The song “Chocolate Ice Cream Cone” became a part of family history.
He taught wisdom to his children in many sayings such as, “The best place to find a helping hand is at the end of your arm,” and, “If you’re not ten minutes early you’re late.”
Some of his sayings were for family and friends, “You can be slow to go, but hurry back!” And some were for grins. “How ‘bout them apples!”