Todd Charles Hawkins, 50, passed away on April 24, 2019, in Ithaca, NY after sixteen months of bravely and fiercely fighting colorectal cancer. Services in New York state were held on Saturday, April 27, 2019, at Perkins Funeral Home in Dryden, NY. A Celebration of Life meal and gathering followed at the Dryden VFW Hall. (www.perkinsfuneralhome.com)
Todd’s Memorial Service will be 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, July 20, 2019, at the Northwestern United Methodist Church in Mellette, SD. Inurnment will follow in the Mellette Cemetery. Arrangements in South Dakota have been entrusted to Hyke Funeral Home of Redfield, SD. (www.hykefuneralhome.com)
Todd was born on May 2, 1968, in Aberdeen, SD to Terry and Carol (Milbrandt) Hawkins. He grew up on a farm near Mellette, SD and always retained his love for the rural and outdoor life. Todd graduated From Northwestern High School in Mellette in 1986, attained his BS in 1996 from Boise State University, Boise, ID and his MBA from Keller University in 2005.
On August 9, 2003, Todd and Wendi Sue George, the love of his life, were married in Las Vegas, NV with family and friends witnessing their love. Todd was in awe at the births of their two daughters, Delaney Carolyn, 13, and Madison Grace, 3, and overjoyed to have children. Todd was a devoted husband and father. He often expressed his amazement and deep feelings on how truly blessed he was to have his family.
For the past 14 years, the family has lived in Freeville, NY where Todd, as well as Wendi, worked at nearby Cornell University in Ithaca NY. Todd was a Purchasing Agent for Cornell University for 13 years. He was well respected in his professional life and served for a time as the Treasurer for the New York Region of the National Association for Education Procurement. Though his profession was important to him and he was a lifelong learner, his family came first. He enjoyed the time they had to spend together, whether it was traveling, participating in his daughters’ activities in any way possible, hands-on fathering or simply working around their 16-acre country home. He always had at least one project he was working on.
Along with his immediate family, Todd is survived by his father, Terry (Gail) Hawkins of Mellette, SD, sister Becky Hawkins, Aberdeen, SD, mother-in-law, Lyn George, Dryden, NY, brother-in-law, Kevin and family of Paisley, Scotland, five aunts, and numerous cousins. He was preceded in death by his mother, Carol, in 2009, his infant older sister, Carmen, in 1967, his father-in-law, Clarence George in March of this year, all his grandparents as well as six uncles, including Charles Milbrandt, KIA in Vietnam, for whom he was named.
During this journey of the past sixteen months, Todd expressed the depth of his gratitude and appreciation for those who were making the journey with him. Whether they were family and dear friends, co-workers at Cornell, or the multitude of medical people whose lives he touched, in his soft-spoken manner and with deeply heartfelt sincerity, he wanted everyone to know how much they had meant to him.
Todd became an advocate for the need for early colonoscopies. Colon cancer has no noticeable symptoms for many years. Todd was told his cancer had begun at least ten years ago and he saw a doctor after experiencing symptoms for only a few months. In lieu of flowers, as a lasting tribute to Todd, schedule a colonoscopy. Fight to have the recommended testing age lowered as Todd had not even reached that testing age when his cancer was diagnosed.
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