At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.
Oregon Coast Humane Society
2840 Rhododendron Dr
Florence, OR 97439
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Life Story / Obituary
Delores Rose “Mickey” Hopkins was a devoted wife and a one-of-a-kind Mom. An industrious worker, Delores lived her life selflessly. She will be lovingly remembered and greatly missed by her special friends and family.
On October 9, 1930, in Ellettsville, Indiana, Delores Rose Matson, who was nicknamed “Mickey” by her father, was born the eldest child and only daughter of Raymond and Bonnie Matson. There is no doubt that her birth brought them much joy and happiness! Close-knit and hard- workers, they lived in a tiny town near Bloomington, IN with many relatives nearby. Her father ran the family-owned gas station and her mother worked for the school in the area. They lived modestly but she enjoyed her time growing up.
Mickey’s childhood was filled with many happy memories of simpler times. She told stories of her Aunt Pauline’s famous butterscotch pie and canning tomatoes with her mother (She hated peeling them!) and helping at her dad’s gas station while he went home for lunch.
A bit of an introvert, her younger years were devoted to helping around the house and spending time with close friends. Mickey attended Ellettsville High School, where she graduated one of only 8 in her senior class. Always interested in service to others, Mickey attended training at the Methodist School of Nursing. She gave her all during the tough coursework and eventually graduated in 1953 landing her first job in Kentucky as an RN! She then worked in Miami, FL for a period as well. Less than thrilled with the low wages she was receiving in the private hospitals she turned to the opportunity of a lifetime; to join the United States Air Force as an Officer nurse in 1957! She trained in Texas and her first duty station was overseas in Japan. She found she loved the culture and the people and always spoke of it as her favorite assignment. Delores loved the travel and adventure the service afforded her. During these years, Mickey was blessed to meet and care for many Airmen.
Later, she was transferred to Wright Patterson Air Force Base hospital in Dayton, Ohio. During this time, she met the man who would change the course of her life forever, a pilot and widower, Stephen Hopkins. At the time Delores outranked him! The two of them married on November 20, 1964. Delores accepted his two young daughters into her heart from that day forward. Later, she and Stephen were happy to announce the birth of their son, Stephen Michael. Although Delores was very proud to earn the rank of Captain in the Air Force, she was professionally derailed when she learned she would become a mother as was the custom for the military during the 60’s. With Stephen often away from home flying, she chose to stay home with the kids. She supervised the packing and moving when Dad was transferred next to Okinawa, then New Hampshire, and finally to Arizona. Never one for vanity, her taste was minimalism. She kept a military regimen and dinner was always served promptly at 6 pm! Delores was not much of a cook, as the family would later joke, but they never went without a hot meal! The family toured much of the states in their station wagon including Pennsylvania, Michigan, Indiana, South Dakota, and New York where they visited family. In 1973, Stephen retired at the rank of Major in Mesa, Arizona. The years flew by eventually welcoming grandchildren.
Mickey held a wide variety of special interests. An avid reader, she chose medical crime novels. Later when her eyesight changed due to macular degeneration, she enjoyed listening to books on tape. Prior to that, she loved to watch Diagnosis Murder, starring Dick Van Dyke and Quincy, starring Jack Klugman and Murder She Wrote, starring Angela Lansbury on television. She was a huge fan of the Andy Griffith Show and Matlock. Her favorite movies were Somewhere in Time and Cocoon. When it came to music, Mickey loved those movie themes and orchestra music, Jim Nabors, Barry Manilow, and big band. For relaxation, as well as to keep her mind sharp, she studied crosswords and did the daily word jumbles in the newspaper. She loved to sew, crochet, and embroider. Cats were her favorite animal. There was always at least one in the house. Her special favorite was Copper. She also spent bonding time with her son watching baseball. They both were big fans of the Dodgers and later she became a Rockies fan as well. Her father had taught her the love of the game. Her nickname came from his admiration for Mickey Mantle!
Sadly, her husband Steve died in 2006 just shy of 42 years of marriage. After a few years she sold the large AZ home and moved to their smaller summer place on the Oregon coast. In 2017, she moved to Kalamazoo, MI to be closer to her daughter, Julie, and her husband Tim. They shared special memories and chuckles during those years. In January of 2021, Mickey moved into Bickford Cottage in Portage, MI to receive specialized care for her memory issues. Described as a tough lady who never complained, Delores was a force. Her subtle sense of humor and feisty ways will be fondly remembered by the aides at Bickford whom she loved and became family.
Delores Rose “Mickey” Hopkins, died peacefully on Thursday evening, May 19, 2022, at age 91 with her daughter Julie, son-in-law Tim, and her beloved “Miss Kitty” by her side.
Members of her family include her 3 children: Karen Williams of Pahrump NV, Julie (Tim) Doerschler of Portage MI, and Stephen M (Lisa) Hopkins of Lompoc CA; 3 grandchildren: Neil Williams, Erica Williams, and Jordan Hopkins; and one great-grandchild: Dax Williams; 2 brothers: David (Sandra) Matson and John (Judy) Matson. She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, Stephen R. Hopkins, and a brother, Marvin Lee Matson. Cremation has taken place and she will be interred in the National Memorial Cemetery of Arizona next to her husband Steve. Visit Delores’ webpage at BetzlerLifeStory.com to archive favorite memories and photos and sign her guestbook. Memorial Contributions may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association, or the Oregon Coast Humane Society. Betzler Life Story Funeral Homes, 6080 Stadium Drive, Kalamazoo (269) 375-2900.