Douglas Dwight Hayes of 907 Charlotte Drive in Normal, Illinois, suffered a sudden cardiac arrest on Sunday, March 9, in Saint Mary's, Georgia. Retired from the State of Illinois, Department of Children & Family Services since 2007, he was doing what he loved best: drinking his morning coffee in a favorite campground, whilst tooling about the country in the Airstream Interstate he owned with Maggie, his wife of 21 years. Our loyal son, loving father, adoring husband, and doting grandfather died three days later, Wednesday, March 12, 2014.
Doug was born February 16, 1949 in Washington, Iowa to Lloyd Lyle and Harriet Louise (Eyestone) Hayes. A 1967 graduate of Washington High School, Doug went on to earn his B.A. in Political Science from Iowa Wesleyan College in Mt. Pleasant, Iowa (1971) and his M.A. in Political Science from Western Illinois University in Macomb, Illinois (1975).
A voracious reader who believed—and oft reminded us—that life was too short to read bad literature, Doug finished Dostoyevsky's tome The Brothers Karamazov just weeks before his death.
We are infinitely grateful to fellow travelers at A Big Wheel RV Park in Saint Mary's, Georgia: strangers who came to Doug and Maggie's immediate aid in a time of acute crisis. How Doug ended up in the competent hands of the Southeast Georgia Medical Centers, we do not know, but for this happenstance intersection of time and space, we are grateful. The family wishes to give special thanks to Doctors Michael Fletcher, Stephen Chitty, Enrique Fernandez, and all of the compassionate and competent medical staff at the Camden and Brunswick Campuses.
In lieu of flowers, we ask that donations or memorials be made in Doug’s name to Faith Works (www.faithworksministry.org) in grateful remembrance of the enveloping care they provided to Doug and his family in Brunswick, Georgia. Dr. Wright Culpepper and Karen's House of Hope provided spiritual support and physical shelter during our time of need so far from home.
Please join family and friends for visitation Friday, March 21, 2014 from 4:00 to 6:00 PM at Beatty Funeral Home in Washington, Iowa. There will also be visitation Saturday from 11:30 to 12:30 at the Funeral Home prior to departing for his funeral. Doug's funeral will be held 1:00 PM Saturday, March 22, 2014 at the Grace Hill Moravian Church near Washington, Iowa. Following the funeral, he will be buried in Grace Hill Cemetery next to his father, who left this earthly world the day before Doug's fourth birthday and who Doug loved and missed every day for the past 61 years.
Doug was preceded in death by his father, Lloyd Lyle Hayes, and by his stepfather, Lawrence Whetstine.
Doug is survived by his wife, Maggie (Wright), his 96-year-old mother, Louise Whetstine, his sister Sandra (Terry) Greiner, his sons Jacob Hayes and Patrick (Angel) Hayes, his daughter Christine (Adam) Ralston, his stepchildren Larry (Tami) Wright and Sara (Efrain) Curet, a beloved pooch, Lily, and nine grandchildren: Blake, Aaliyah, Indira, Justice, Quran, Caleb, Camden, Emma, and Alice.
Doug was a man who kept his things and kept his people. He leaves behind friends he has had since childhood and throughout his life. Doug also leaves behind many fellow travelers and friends that he and Maggie met and enjoyed as they lived their retirement dream of traveling the country together these past 6 1/2 years.
When reflecting on his life and good fortune, Doug often said that he had an embarrassment of riches. A truly great man, he will be missed by so many, so very much.