Florence Del Hatchett, formerly of Montclair, died peacefully on May 4 in Brick after a five-year battle with Lewy Body Dementia. She was 93.
Florence was born on March 8, 1927, in Orange, the second-oldest of four children of the late Alfred Porter Roy and Mary Louise Roy Kirkley. She spent her early years in Vauxhall and attended public schools in Orange, graduating from Orange High School.
She spent her young adulthood in East Orange and in 1946 married Robert G. Cooke. Two sons, Robert Jr. and Gregory, were born from this union. Florence remarried on Nov. 27, 1965. She became a mom to sons Keith and Scott Hatchett. She and husband Thomas C. Hatchett remained married for 54 years.
Florence made sure she took care of her family, joining the work force as a sales representative with Bamberger’s in Newark. She went on to work at the Port of Newark Navy Yard as a secretary. From there she worked at the VA hospital in East Orange.
Florence’s later years were spent employed as a medical secretary with Schering-Plough and Merck & Co. in Bloomfield and Kenilworth. She retired in October 1990.
She enjoyed a love of cooking, sports, and music, and was an avid reader. She also loved traveling, visiting Canada, St. Thomas, the Virgin Islands, and Jamaica, and traveling within the U.S. Her grandchildren were fortunate to be able to travel with her on some of those trips.
She truly enjoyed the company of her family, siblings, and their children, extended family members and friends, often hosting many a family gathering. A stylish woman, Florence maintained that sense of herself into her final days.
She leaves behind many fond memories in the hearts of her husband, Thomas Hatchett of Manchester; sons Gregory (Linda) Cooke of Clermont, Fla., Keith Hatchett of Hampton, Va., and Scott Hatchett of Newark; grandchildren Robert (Denay) Cooke III of Randallstown, Md., James (Brenda) Cooke of Randallstown, Kara Hatchett of Virginia, Gregory Cooke Jr. of Brick, Sean Hatchett of Pensacola, Fla., Max Cooke of Clermont, Fla., Chris Cooke of Clermont, and Brianna Hatchett of New Jersey; great-grandchildren Dante Cooke, Jared Cooke, Jarrell Cooke, and Tavares Cooke, all of Randallstown, Md., and Kiana Cooke and Elijah Cooke, both of Howell; nieces and nephews Kevin (Kym) Kirkley, of East Brunswick, Kenneth Kirkley of Silver Springs, Md., Robert Blunden Piscataway, Kim Kirkley and Karen Kirkley, both of Brooklyn, Kimberley (Tracy) Hatchett-Maitland of Long Island, N.Y., Karen (Rob) Pavlin of New York; great-nieces and nephews Kevin Kirkley Jr. of East Brunswick, Kelly Kirkley of New York, Zuri Pavlin of New York, Marley Pavlin of New York, Lauren Maitland of Long Island, N.Y., and Farah Musa of Brooklyn; beloved cousins Benita Alwaise of New Jersey, Audrey Brown-Givens of New Jersey, and many dear friends.
Florence was predeceased by her three siblings, Vera (Robert) Kirkley Baskerville, Alfred (Louise) Roy Kirkley and Frank (Dorothy) Delineor Kirkley, and a nephew, Alfred R. Kirkley Jr.