Marian Ralphs Hicks, age 94, former Rocky Mount, NC resident, died peacefully at home in Laguna Niguel, CA on April 8, 2013, and was buried in San Bernardino, CA. An alumna of the University of Southern California, she married Thomas W. Hicks in 1945 and relocated to his hometown of Rocky Mount, N.C. Marian was an active volunteer with the Girl Scouts, Church of the Good Shepherd and Junior Guild. A talented athlete and girls’ sports advocate, she created the area's first City Girls Tennis League with friend, Kate Harrison.
In 1982, Marian returned to California and reconnected with Graham Abraham, a special friend from childhood. She enjoyed many happy years near the Pacific Ocean with visits from old friends and family.
Marian was predeceased by Thomas W. Hicks and Graham Abraham as well as parents Elizabeth and John Ralphs Jr. Her great- grandfather, Sheriff John Ralphs Sr., last of the area’s Old West lawmen, is remembered in book and film for leading the posse hunt for “Willie Boy” through the Southwest US. Her maternal ancestor Capt. Jefferson Hunt who led settlers to the area in 1851 is considered “the father” of San Bernardino. A rare fourth generation Californian, Marian’s family history parallels the events that shaped the nation from the 1800’s to post WWII. Her ancestors were part of the earliest migration of Mayflower descendants from East to West and she was part of the later migration of WWII brides starting new lives far from their families.
She is survived by daughters Janet, Penny and Carolyn, Janet’s husband Dick Bethune and Carolyn’s husband Fred Baggett. Also, grandchildren Caroline and Richard Bethune and his wife Julia, her sister Janet Pope and many loving nieces and nephews treasure her memory. Memorial contributions, if desired, can be made to the charity of one’s choice.