Hazel Geneal Carpenter was born in Cedar County, Missouri on Aug. 31, 1924. She passed away in Vancouver, Washington on Feb. 9, 2021 at the age of 96.
Hazel was raised on a large country farm in Wagoner, Missouri where she attended Cedar Bluff School – a one room country schoolhouse, and Stockton High School where she graduated in 1942.
Hazel married lifetime friend and high-school sweetheart Jim York. Shortly after marriage, Jim enlisted in the US Army and they moved to Tacoma, Washington – home of Fort Lewis Army Base. Jim and Hazel were married 11 years and had one son together named Kyle, who died shortly after birth in 1950. Jim and Hazel parted ways and went on to marry other people.
Cupid struck a second time when Hazel met Dennis Carpenter while working as a waitress in a Tacoma café. At the time, Dennis worked as a produce man in a local supermarket. Their courtship led to marriage and two daughters, Kylene and Terri.
Throughout her life, Hazel’s occupations included homemaker; journeyman grocery checker; Medical Office Assistant; and Pierce County Realtor.
Her favorite hobbies included ceramics; sand candle making; flower arranging; fishing for steelhead and mountain trout; gambling in Las Vegas (slot machines); do it your own projects (house painting, remodel projects, gardening); bowling; shopping for treasures at secondhand stores; and shopping for clothes and jewelry.
Some of Hazel’s favorite memories included a trip to Disneyland when kids were little; 35 years of weekend adventures at Huckle Chuck – their cabin in the woods at Mount Rainier; Halloween costume parties; horseshoes; campfires; and filling the freezer full of fish.
Hazel and Dennis remained in Tacoma until 1998, when they moved to Vancouver Washington, to live near their daughters and grandkids. Husband Dennis passed away in 2006, and Hazel reunited with first husband Jim York for a few years, before he died in 2009.
In her later years, Hazel enjoyed countless celebrations with family and friends at Whipple Creek Farm; annual “Old Age Aint for Sissies” Road Trips; annual Birthday Bash celebrations full of sparkle, bling and tierra’s all around; hanging out with her best friends the “Golden Girls; ”dressing-up every day for supper where she could showcase fashionable outfits, matching jewelry, makeup with just the right lipstick, perfume, cut/colored/styled hair; and watching her favorite TV shows with Mr. Oliver (CNN, The Bachelor, America’s Got Talent, Dancing with the Stars, and Everyone Loves Raymond).
Hazel’s favorite snacks and treats were Ritz crackers, saltine crackers with milk, Chester’s Puff Corn, Coconut Cream pie, Folgers Gourmet Supreme Coffee with French Vanilla creamer, sweet rolls and donuts, Snickers, SPAM and Freestone peaches.
More of Hazel’s favorite things included the colors green, orange, and pink; roses; Big Band Music; the Lawrence Welk show, Bing Crosby, Sammy Davis Jr. and Dean Martin.
Hazel also enjoyed old-time TV shows such as Red Skelton, All in the Family, Jackie Gleason, I Love Lucy, Rowan and Martin’s Laugh-in and Johnny Carson.
Hazel was fond of many pet animals over the years, to include her childhood lamb, Flame (dog), Fluffy (cat), Tammy (dog), LeRoy (cat), Trouble (cat), Chelsea (dog), Tina (cat) and Mr. Oliver (very big cat).
Survivors include two daughters Kylene Carpenter (Stengel) and Terri Carpenter (Nosack); their spouses Ed Stengel and Tom Nosack; five grandchildren Laura, Stephen, Casey, Katrin and James; three great-grandchildren Orion, Zacil and Francis; and her beloved cat Mr. Oliver.
Hazel was preceded in death by her parents Johnnie Albert Moore and Annie Ersel Moore (Spencer); three siblings died shortly after birth Etta Mae, Stella and Lowell; Cousin Jesse Spencer (raised like a brother with Hazel; first husband James (Jim) York and their son Kyle; and second husband Dennis Carpenter.
At Hazel’s request, she was cremated and will be buried in-between Dennis and Jim’s graves at Northwood Park Cemetery in Ridge-field, Washington.
In lieu of a traditional funeral there will be a big Celebration of Life event held in Hazel’s honor, once Covid restrictions are lifted for holding large gatherings.
The memory of Hazel’s smile, sense of humor, style, laughter and stories will live on in the hearts of all those who knew and loved her.