Emmett C. Hawkins loved life. Well-known in North Omaha’s black community as “Hawk,” Emmett enjoyed having a good, good time with his friends and family. He took special delight in hanging with his buddies at the American Legion post. He had an infectious laugh and smile. And a quick wit. Simply put, Emmett was fun to be around.
Emmett was born to Eula Mae Hawkins and Roosevelt Williams in Marvell, Arkansas on September 2, 1946. He began his education at Tate Elementary School in Marvell. After the death of Emmett’s mother, his grandparents–Arthur and Birdie Hawkins, who preceded him in death–moved Emmett and his brother, Clevester Hawkins, to Omaha, Nebraska in 1953. Emmett made a profession of Christian faith during his early childhood. He was baptized by the Rev. Dr. Z. W. Williams and joined Morning Star Baptist Church in Omaha. At Morning Star, Emmett was active in the Sunday School, Crusaders, Vacation Bible School, Intermediate Choir, and Men’s Choir.
He continued his education in Omaha at Kellom Elementary School and Tech Junior High. As a teenager, Emmett enjoyed spending time at the Kellom and Logan Fontenelle School playgrounds playing football, baseball, basketball, and sandlot track meets with his home boys. After graduating from Technical High School in 1965, he enlisted in the United States Air Force and was awarded the following medals: U.S. Air Force Good Conduct Medal; National Defense Service Medal; Vietnam Service Medal; Republic Vietnam Campaign Medal; Republic of Vietnam, Gallantry Cross; and Small Arms Expert Marksmanship Ribbon. Emmett received an honorable discharge on January 16, 1970.
Emmett later worked as an installer and repairman for Northwestern Bell, and retired after more than 25 years. He then served as a security officer for hotels, University of Nebraska football games, and Omaha Public Schools.
On April 30, 2020, Emmett C. “Hawk” Hawkins went home to be with the Lord. Emmett also was preceded in death by Virgil Lee Woodson (sister); Onesius Allen (brother); Lula Mae Nicholson (sister); and Shirley Washington Hawkins (former wife).
Those mourning Emmett are his son, Emmett Hawkins II; daughter, Ericka Veland; brothers, James Williams (Thelma) and Rev. Dr. Clevester Hawkins (Dorris); sisters, Dorothy Chestnut, Rosemary Taylor (Gilbert), Ater Dotson, and Joan Williams; grandsons, Elijah Hawkins and Teyon Emmett Hawkins; daughter-in-law, Felicia Jones; step-daughters, Sylvia Love and Veronica Washington; former wives, Gail Fountain Hawkins and Ann Hawkins; and too many nieces, nephews, cousins, relatives, and friends to name.
Emmett C. Hawkins will be interned at the Omaha National Cemetery, 14250 Schram Road, Omaha, NE 68138. He will be dearly missed.
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