Annabelle Ruth Conway was born February 25, 1922, the same day as her mother, and raised in Williamsburg Ohio. She was the youngest of three children; Harris, Annabelle’s older brother and Betty her older sister. Her father Karl Hoffman and her mother Georgia (Harris) were married for over 50 years. Annabelle and her family grew up in a small home with an acre garden where they grew much of their own food; as a young girl Annabelle learned from her mother how to make a great meal from very little. During the Great Depression, Georgia was known for her kind heart by providing food to passing homeless men, and teaching Sunday school to young adults at the Methodist Church. Annabelle was an avid sports ethusiatist and played basketball and softball throughout high school. During WWII she worked as a secretary in Cincinnati, Ohio where she would eventually meet Thomas Windroy Conway on a blind date arranged by her sister’s boyfriend. Tom was a former army supply sergeant who was selling military surplus – he was known as a real charmer and a good dancer whose nickname was “Tiger” from his football days. Tom and Annabelle married on May 24, 1946 and had Michael, their first of three boys, in 1948 followed by Stephen in 1951 and Jerry in 1954. In much of the 1950’s and 60’s Tom traveled as a part of his career and Annabelle took care of their sons. She always said that raising the three boys was the best time of her life; AND IT SHOWED IN HER DEVOTION AND DEDICATION AS A MOTHER
Annabelle taught hard work, kindness, patience and the importance of education. She made sure each of the boys could cook, clean and take care of the household. She liked gardening and art, and often created various projects the boys could provide the labor for as they learned valuable lesson of right from wrong. Annabelle raised the boys in Ft Wayne, Indiana in a small middleclass neighborhood where both a grade school and middle school were located within a few blocks. The boys were free to run around the neighborhood, but they always kept an ear open for the large bell that hung off the backdoor that Annabelle would ring to call them home for meals.
Annabelle loved to play golf and bridge, and was also very fond of art, antiques and the company of good friends. She was an avid reader and enjoyed going to the movies and theater. Tom and Annabelle lived in the same home in Ft Wayne from 1953 until 1980; when Tom retired they moved to Sarasota, Florida until 2007. Tom and Annabelle moved to Raleigh, North Carolina in 2007 to be closer to their sons Jerry and Steve. She lost her oldest son Michael in 2009 and her husband Tom in 2010. Annabelle is survived by her sons Jerry and Steve, her grandchildren Jessica, Britt, Colin, Danielle, and Christopher, and her great grandchildren Nate, Andrew, Houston, Derek, Lilly, Michael, and Louis.
God Bless Annabelle, a great mother, daughter, sister, grandmother, great grandmother, wife, and a strong woman!