Betsy Ross Hooper (Lawhon) died on January 28th, 2023 at home in Galveston, Texas with her son by her side. She was 86 years old and the oldest daughter of Byrdie Estelle Lawhon (Lawson) and Ross Niles Lawhon, of Tupelo Mississippi.
Ross was born in Tupelo Mississippi on April 20, 1936 and was most definitely her father’s tomboy, riding her pony "Trigger" on and around the Natchez Trace north of town, always looking for a new adventure and causing her parents "much worry." Despite her mother's grave concerns, Ross survived to graduate high school and took off for Ole Miss in 1955. Finding Oxford a bit too familiar, Ross set off to see the world, working as an airline stewardess for Pan Am during its heyday in the late 1950's and early 60's. She eventually made her way back to Dallas and married Robert Irvin Hooper of Tupelo, who was fresh out of a stint in the Army. They returned to Mississippi, where Ross finished her course work at Ole Miss, taking a B.A. in English and a B.S. in Pharmacy in 1970. Ross worked at Methodist in Memphis for years, rising to director of Pharmacy for Methodist North in Raleigh before moving over to executive vice president at Crittenden Memorial Hospital in West Memphis in the early 80s. She earned an M.B.A. from Memphis State and served as the chief executive officer of the hospital until retiring in 2004. Ross served on the Arkansas Hospital Board, the blood bank, various community college boards, and Zonta International. Ross was always keen to support a good cause with her time and good counsel.
Ross loved travel, good company, and reading. She doted on her pets, most lately “Bad Thing”, her indomitable cat who is now living by the sea causing "much worry!" She lovingly spoiled her son and her grandkids, loved her daughters-in-law, and was a kind and generous spirit who left the world a better place than she found it.
She is survived by her son, Robert Niles Hooper, and her six grandchildren, Ella Grace Thomas, Aidan Bainbridge Hooper, Blake Lawson Hooper, Aeryn Olivia Hooper, Holden Ross Hooper, and Brendan Neal Hooper. Fair winds, Ross, your family and friends take comfort in knowing that you are reunited with your beloved sister and parents for the next grand adventure.
Ross is returning to Tupelo where she will be buried with her father, mother, and dear sister "Twinkie." A graveside memorial service is planned for 3 p.m. Saturday, March 4, 2023 at Tupelo Memorial Park cemetery. Pegues Funeral Directors has been entrusted with the arrangements.
Expressions of sympathy and fond memories may be shared at