Clair Joseph “Kelly” Hawbaker, 77, passed away April 15 at the Rawlins Rehabilitation and Wellness Center in Rawlins following a short illness.

He was born May 16, 1942, in Scobey, Mont., to parents Harvey Roy Hawbaker and Edith Miranda (Hrabik) Hawbaker, one of 11 children. The family lived in Peerless, Mont., where he graduated from high school. He also attended college in Billings, Mont., and business school in Denver. He served in the Army Corp of Engineers and was also a saddle bronc rider, ranch hand and participated in wagon trains. His work experience included working in retail stores, as a loan office employee, a brakeman on the Union Pacific Railroad and maintenance director for Carbon County School District 1 until his retirement after 26 years. During retirement, you’d find him having coffee three times a day with friends at Square Shooters, Cappys and Penny’s Diner. He was also his grandson Owen’s personal chauffeur, confidante and best friend.

He married Twila (Cloyd) Hawbaker on June 11, 1977, in Kanorado, Kan. They were blessed with two daughters, Kellie Jo Hawbaker and Kari Susanne Hawbaker; and four grandchildren, Owen Joseph Hawbaker, Odin Leifayas Pederson, Ivy Ray Andais Pederson and Rune William Pederson.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Roy and Edith Hawbaker; siblings, Larry “Pete” Hawbaker, Levi Hawbaker, Harvey Richard Hawbaker and Leah Adams; nephews, Barry Hawbaker and Terry Hawbaker; and his in-laws, Jack and Ruby Cloyd, Sandie Franz, Joel Franz, Violet Hawbaker, Maureen Hawbaker and Oliver Grove.

Surviving to honor his memory are his wife, Twila Cloyd Hawbaker; and his two children, Kellie Jo Hawbaker (David Whitzel) and Kari Susanne Hawbaker (John Mooseman). He will be fondly remembered by his four grandchildren, Owen Hawbaker, Odin, Ivy and Rune Pederson. He was so proud of all of them and loved them with all of his heart. He is also survived by his siblings, James (Norma) Hawbaker, Ken Hawbaker, Marcia (Greg) Garcia, Harland (Linda) Hawbaker, Eddie (Bonnie) Hawbaker and Donna Grove; amazingly, along with 28 nieces and nephews; 48 great-nieces and nephews; and 10 great-great-nieces and nephews.

Cremation has taken place under the care of Jacoby Funeral Home. A celebration of life will be held at a later date in Rawlins due to the circumstances. Interment of ashes will also be held at a later date in Kanorado, Kan.

As an expression of sympathy, memorial contributions may be made to Pet Partners of Carbon County, Rawlins Rochelle Animal Shelter, or Carbon 1 Special Olympics of Wyoming.

“Your Wings Were Ready But Our Hearts Were Not.”

This is a paid obituary.

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