Teresa (Terry) Hawks was born to Vivien Powers and Andy Green March 19, 1948 in Evansville, IN. After Andy and Vivian went separate ways, Vivien married the man Teresa loved as her father, Donald Rail, and took his last name. She spent her early childhood as a road warrior, sleeping at her dad’s feet as he drove truck. During this time, her brother Mike and sisters Diane and Trudy joined the family. The rest of her childhood, their family bounced all over the country, settling for a few years in Great Falls before Moving to Newark, CA and graduating from Newark High in 1966. She was accepted into college, but decided to join the workforce instead. Around this time, her parents divorced and both of her parents remarried. She gained her step-siblings, Tim, Mark, and Dawn. After Vivien and her new husband lost a young baby girl, Jimmie Alien, to meningitis, Teresa was blessed with her baby brothers, Jimmy (JF), and Wess, whom she continued to love and mother-hen until the end. Teresa also spent a short time with her dad and his family and fondly talked about helping raise her step-brother, Timmy, as a baby.
After this, she returned to Montana and landed on the Hi-Line, first in Hingham, then Chester and tended bar for a few years and became known as “Terry”. One fateful night, she helped Dale Hawks celebrate his 21st birthday and they married 5 years later on 11/29/1978 in the Little Chapel in Las Vegas, NV and she remained a loyal, selfless, hard-working farm wife for 42 years. In 1981, their daughter Candy was born. As a mom, she will always be remembered for the times she spent in the early elementary classroom helping with holiday parties, her patient ear and late night talks, all the hours spent sitting in grain trucks together (always muttering ‘too many chiefs, not enough braves’). She, like her mom, would give long back rubs, long after her own hands had gone to sleep. She enjoyed reading and crocheting, giving numerous afghans to family and friends throughout the years until her hands could no longer do the detailed work. She lived to go to Vegas with Dale in the winter. She wasn’t fancy and could enjoy hours at a penny machine. She loved her Cubbies and her Lakers. She was always up for a card game and regularly recruited her mother-in-law, Evelyn, nieces and nephew to join. None of the kids were immune from her abrupt orders to “Pay attention! It’s your turn!”
She was also extremely close to her cousin, Jimmy Roberts, and reconnected with him later in life and they talked almost daily.
While Terry was known for her humorous retorts and fiery spirit, she was also known for her stoic nature and her heart completely melted the day she got the phone call that she was a Grandma. Even though her health was waning, she came to visit her grandson, Dustin, whom she affectionately called “Bubby” every chance she got and never hung up the phone without an ‘I love you, Bubby’ or a ‘Tell Bubby I love him’. We got our last ‘I love you’s’ on Monday, May 11.
Her weary body gave out and left this world suddenly on the evening of May 12. She will be missed beyond measure but is now free from her earthly pain and went to His loving arms, to see her mother, sisters, special child, Kevin, and rock her first grandbaby, Dutch.
Terry was preceded in death by mother Vivien, grandson, Dutch, her sisters, Diane, Trudy, & Jimmie, father, Donald, paternal father, Andy, her grandparents, 3 uncles, 1 aunt and father-in-law, Henry and mother-in-law, Evelyn.
Terry is survived by her husband, Dale, daughter Candy (Tracy) Milroy, grandson Dustin, brothers Mike Rail (daughters Shelly and Dawn), Jimmy Smith (wife Michelle and daughters Jamie & Krystina), Wess Smith (children KV and JR), and their families, sister in-law, Angela, brother-in-law, Loren, and their families, numerous nephews, nieces, cousins, 3 step-siblings, Mark, Dawn, and Tim, beloved cousin, Jimmy Roberts and special friend, Donna Reid.
Public visitation will be Sunday, May 17, from 1 to 4pm at Rockman Funeral Chapel.
A private graveside will be held on Monday at Chester Cemetery.
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