Published 3:12 pm Monday, February 6, 2017

CLEVELAND – Hazel Faircloth Ray Coker of Cleveland, Georgia, a mother of two, a stepmother of two, and a grandmother of eight, an incredibly kind and loving person, and a lifelong sports fan, particularly of the Atlanta Braves and the Georgia Bulldogs, died on January 27, 2017, which was her 78th birthday.

Hazel Coker was born in 1939 and was raised in Wilcox and Crisp Counties, Georgia. As a teenager, she moved to Fort Valley, Georgia, in Peach County, to live with her brother Norman Faircloth (and his family) who was the coach at Fort Valley High School. Hazel was a cheerleader for the beloved Fort Valley Green Waves. She graduated high school in 1957, married, and began a family. She raised a son and daughter, often while working in an administrative capacity at local businesses such as The Blue Bird Body Company, AC Gas Service, Larrie Connell State Farm Agency, and the University of Georgia Cooperative Extension Service. All the while, she made time to never miss her children’s school and athletic activities, even though she juggled it all as a single mother.

In 1988, Hazel married James Avery Coker and moved to Stockbridge, Georgia, where she continued her career with the University of Georgia by working for Clayton County Cooperative Extension. She particularly enjoyed her work in support of the Georgia 4-H Program, which had been a big part of the life of her family. She retired in 2002, when she and James moved into their dream home next to her daughter and three of her grandchildren in the beautiful mountains of White County.

Hazel Coker is survived by her sister, Ina Faircloth of Atlanta, Georgia; her daughter, Sheila Ray Rosencrantz, of Cleveland, Georgia; her son and daughter-in-law, Judge William Ray and Dr. Kelle Chandler Ray of Grayson, Georgia; two step-daughters and stepsons-in-law, Jamie and Jim Wright of McDonough, Georgia, and Deana and Brad Mosher of Wrightsville, Georgia; four grandsons, Chandler, Davis and Avery Ray of Grayson, Georgia, and Sutton Rosencrantz of Cleveland, Georgia; two granddaughters, Laura Rosencrantz of East Point, Georgia, and Julie Walker of Dallas, Georgia; two step-granddaughters, Caitlin Freeman and Emily Wright of McDonough, Georgia; three sisters-in-law, Mary Faircloth of Tifton, Georgia, Ferol Faircloth of Wewahitchka, Florida, and Judy Coker of McDonough, Georgia; many nieces and nephews, and many more grandnieces and grandnephews.

Hazel was preceded in death by her husband, James Coker; her parents, Norman S. and Myrtle Faircloth; her brothers, Norman, William T., James, and Britt Faircloth; and her sisters, Elizabeth Faircloth Allison, Bessie Faircloth Cantrell, Dell Faircloth Hughes, and Joyce Faircloth Harrell.

There will be a visitation with the family of Hazel Coker at the Alexander Funeral Home in Cleveland, Georgia on Friday, February 3, from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m., with a memorial service to celebrate her life in the chapel at the Gainesville First United Methodist Church in Gainesville, Georgia on Saturday, February 4, at 1:00 p.m.

Flowers are welcome, or as an alternative, the family requests donations in memory of Hazel Coker to the Georgia 4-H Foundation in support of the Rock Eagle 4-H Center Cabin Campaign, 306 Hoke Smith Annex, Athens, Georgia 30602.

To leave a memory or a condolence, please visit our website at Alexander Funeral Home | Cleveland GA funeral home and cremation.