Cover photo for Colonel John V. Hawkins's Obituary
Colonel John V. Hawkins Profile Photo

Colonel John V. Hawkins

June 30, 1931 — February 13, 2024


Colonel John V. Hawkins

Colonel John V. Hawkins


John Victor Hawkins passed away peacefully at his home on February 13, 2024.  He was 92 years old and attributed his longevity to the fruits of the Holy Spirit.   He was born in Georgia and raised in Colorado.


He is survived by his wife, Mary Cathey Hawkins, her daughter Lee Cathey-Bell and son, Josephy Cathey III; his two daughters, Deborah Hawkins Lungren (Fred) and Jane Hawkins Elliott (John) both of Tucson, AZ.  John also leaves behind a stepdaughter-in-law, Gretta Hawkins of Casper, WY along with eight grandchildren and a great grandson.   


John was preceded in death by his parents, Lewis and Ruth Hawkins; his sister, Jane Hawkins Lemon; a stepson, Victor Hawkins; the mother of his two daughters, Marilyn Hawkins Gearhart and the mother of his stepson, Audry Hawkins.  


His career of 27 years in the US Air Force began as an enlisted member and advanced to Full Colonel at the time of his retirement.  


While in the Air Force, he earned three degrees in electrical engineering from the University of Colorado.  He was a licensed single engine and dual engine pilot, and a flight instructor. He served in serve in twenty-four duty stations, two overseas tours, and twelve states.  He often joked that he couldn’t keep a job.


After retirement from the Air Force, John was employed by an electronic warfare company as an electrical engineer.


As John settled into his much-loved mountain community of Waynesville, he focused on ways to serve his fellow man.  Volunteering was one of his passions.  He was involved with numerous organizations including Meals on Wheels, Firewood Ministry (Longs Chapel), Haywood Rotary, DAV NC Chap. 89, Pathways, Haywood Gleaners, Mountain Projects, Habitat, and Hospice.  In his own words, “One of the most rewarding parts of my life is the feeling which comes from providing a service to those of God’s creatures who have not been as fortunate as I have.”


John was an enthusiastic RVer, Sailor and Scuba Diving Instructor which presented many opportunities for travel.  He enjoyed hiking with the Haywood Hikers, backpacking, and was a technical rock climber.


John wished to honor his volunteer organizations when family and friends gather to celebrate his life at 11:00 am on Thursday, February 29, 2024, at Longs Chapel Church.    


In lieu of flowers please consider a donation to one of the previously mentioned organizations.

The care of Colonel Hawkins has been entrusted to Wells Funeral Home of Waynesville 


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