Carolyn Early

Carolyn Lee Early (Hobbs)

Tuesday, September 9th, 1941 - Sunday, November 17th, 2019
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Carolyn L. Early, 78, of Keene, Texas passed away Sunday, November 17, 2019 at her home. Private family services will be held. There is no visitation scheduled.
Carolyn Early was born on September 9, 1941, in Omaha, NE to Clem and Mary Hobbs. She was the oldest of four children.
Carolyn loved music and began playing the piano at the age of two and performed on the radio at age eight.
Carolyn began her teaching career at the age of 19, with only a one year teaching certificate. While she taught school, Carolyn attended classes at Union College in Lincoln, NE, where she obtained her degree in Elementary Education. She was hired at Cheney Public School in Lincoln, where she taught grades 2- 5 and served as Principal.
Ten years later, Carolyn moved with her husband to Arlington, TX, where she taught 3rd and 4th grade at Burton Adventist Academy. After three short years, Carolyn moved to Conroe, Texas to re-establish a one room, eight grade school. Over the next 28 years, she served as Principal and teacher at what is now Conroe Adventist Academy.
Education was her passion and she loved teaching about Jesus and His plan of salvation. She shared about our hope in the second coming and she and her students wanted to pick a meeting place in heaven. They chose The Gate of Benjamin. As each class graduated, she challenged them to meet her at the gate. We look forward to meeting her there as well.
Carolyn is survived by her daughter, Danielle Bunkley and husband, James III, of Keene; brother, Clem Hobbs and wife, Phyllis, of Keene; sisters, Sherry Littrell of Siloam Springs, AR and Sally Page and husband, Steve Kenrick, of Saratoga, CA; three nieces, four nephews, great nieces and nephews; and many special students who are also part of her family.
Carolyn’s family has established The Carolyn Early Scholarship Fund at Southwestern Adventist University to honor her life as an educator. Each year the Valedictorians of Conroe Adventist Academy and of Burton Adventist Academy will receive a scholarship.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be sent to: SWAU Carolyn Early Scholarship Fund, 100 W. Hillcrest St., Keene, TX 76059. Credit Card contributions may be made by telephone by calling: Jonathan Seitz, Dir. of Advancement, at 817-202-6755.
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Paula Owens

Posted at 04:29pm
My deepest sympathy. Carolyn was such good example to anyone who crossed her path. I feel my life was blessed by knowing her.
Paula Owens

Cathleen Coulter Ray

Posted at 11:39pm
Carolyn will be greatly missed. Carolyn was a huge part of Criss and my life as Criss’ first Adventist teacher. She was a good friend to my Mom, Donna. Now Carolyn, my Mom and Charlotte Hamilton are all gone, but I have God’s promise that they will meet me at The Gate of Benjamin one day soon. Blessings for Danielle, Big Jim and the rest of her loved ones.

Karen Lake

Posted at 11:11pm
Melvin and Karen Lake send our love and condolences.
We first met Carolyn at Platte Valley Academy in Nebraska where she and Mel were classmates. Karen and Carolyn became friends and she was a bridesmaid in our wedding. Our adult lives took us miles apart. The year Mel was in Vietnam, our friendship was renewed when Karen returned to Lincoln during that time.
Then our daughters became playmates. Years later when Carolyn was working on new curriculum for North American Division of Education in Portland, OR, she was able to spend a couple days with us in our Kent, WA home where our years apart seemed to vanish as we shared those missing years. What a Jewell of a lady!! We will be looking for you at the Benjamin gate too, Carolyn.

Ebony Pearson

Posted at 10:02pm
I doubt there is room for me to share even my most cherished memories of Mrs. Early. There are truly no words to describe the impact that she has had on my life. She believed in me as early as the first grade. I recently asked her why she assigned me, a first grader, THE longest part in the Christmas play. Her response, "Because I knew you could do it." She always pushed me to do my best in everything, as unto God.

The atmosphere Mrs. Early set in the classroom has left an indelible mark on my life. Her patience, kindness, and wisdom were unmatched and she knew each of her students intimately. That could only be accomplished because of her love for God and her commitment to demonstrate His love toward each of us. I use Mrs. Early as a measuring stick of sorts. When I consider an Adventist school for my son, I cannot help but think about that "small" school in Conroe, Texas with one teacher and students ranging from first grade through eighth or ninth grade. I do not know how she did it except for the grace of God that saturated her life.

One of my earliest memories that is the result of Mrs. Early's big heart is of me curled up in a ball in the back seat of my dad's car crying hysterically as any typical six-year old would that could not find the words to express her deep sadness. When my mom asked me what was wrong, I simply said, "I miss Mrs. Early!" My heart was broken because I was not going to see her all summer. I guess I didn't realize that "summer" wasn't forever.

She is resting now. I look forward to seeing her in heaven at our designated meeting place...the Gate of Benjamin.

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