Laurel Reathel Hayes went to be with her loving Lord on the 1st day of March, 2018. Laurel was the second daughter born to Ellen (Points) and David Childers on March 20, 1912. After graduating from Aurora High School, Laurel was appointed Assistant Post Master in Billings, Missouri. Laurel’s identical twin sister, Lorel asked her to substitute for her on a date with a gentleman named Orval (Pete) Hayes. Evidently this substitution on dates occurred on more than one occasion as the sisters were identical twins. Laurel’s date with Pete ended on December 27, 2001 when Pete passed away. At the time of his death Laurel and Pete had been married for 64 years. During their life time together they operated a grocery store on Campbell Street. Laurel worked as a night clerk at MFA Packing House in Springfield where Pete was the night manager. They owned and operated a Dairy Queen in Kirksville and on south Campbell in Springfield. The Dairy Queen was traded for an apartment house in Springfield which they operated until they retired in early 1970’s. The couple spent a life time working together.
Upon retirement in the early 1970’s they started growing and showing roses and were active in the Rose Society of the Ozarks. They were also active square dancers and played bridge for many years. Laurel gave of her time to the Springfield Art Museum, Eastern Star, and the Business and Professional Women’s Club.
In 1964 Laurel and Pete opened their home to twin foster daughters Ethel Peterson and Leona Chilton. They remained close to Laurel and Pete in their later life. Leona visited Laurel frequently and cared for her during the final years of her life while she resided at the nursing facility.
In addition to her husband Pete, Laurel was preceded in death by her parents, her sisters Velma Childers, Ethel Ward, fellow Centenarian Mae Payne, and twin sister Lorel Poor and two brothers Roscoe Childers and Earl Childers. Laurel at the time of her death is survived by her nephew David Childers and his wife Sue Ann of Ozark, Missouri, great nephews Matt Childers of Ozark, Ben Childers of Pensacola, Florida, Mark Ward of Des Moines, Iowa, and Andrew Ward of Kansas City. There will be no formal visitation. A burial service will be held in Maple Park Cemetery in Aurora, Missouri on Saturday, March 3, 2018 at 2:00 p.m. In lieu of flowers donations to the Springfield Botanical Gardens via Friends of the Garden is requested.