Cover photo for Dr. Earl Jay Hawley's Obituary
Dr. Earl Jay Hawley Profile Photo

Dr. Earl Jay Hawley

May 11, 1965 — February 8, 2022

Dr. Earl Jay Hawley

Hawley, Dr. Earl Jay
Buffalo, New York
Formerly of Kawkawlin

Dr. Hawley passed away on Tuesday, February 8, 2022 at the Erie County Medical Center in Buffalo, New York at the age of 56. The son of the late Oscar and June (VanDenBosch) Hawley was born May 11, 1965 in Bay City, Michigan. Earl was an English professor for numerous colleges and universities in Illinois and Wisconsin. He loved spending time with his children and being an uncle and great uncle, going to the beach with family and friends, having barbeques and Sunday dinners, but most of all he loved just spending time with his family and friends. Earl had a contagious laugh and gave wonderful bear hugs. Earl's life's work and passions were focused on education, uplifting others, and serving as a champion for inclusion.  He completed his bachelor's degree at Saginaw Valley State University. Two Master' degrees (including an MFA in Poetry) at Western Michigan University, and his Doctorate at Illinois State University.  With his students, he focused on helping them develop their writing and most importantly helping them tell their stories.  In additional to his teaching, He served as a faculty advisor to organizations that supported student who identified in the LGBTQ community, served as a department lead at the College of Dupage (Glen Ellyn, IL). He received a certificate in Developmental Education from Kellogg Institute (held at Appalachian State University, Boone, NC).  He was also an avid writer of poetry and served as volunteer for adoption education and at a drop in center for teens who identified as LGBTQ.
Earl is survived by his children, June, Charlie and Jack Gordon-Hawley; sisters, Peggy (Rick) Christie and Eileen (Joe) Spyhalski; nieces and nephews, Anne (Brandon) Kocian, John (Mary) Spyhalski, Kevin (Megan) Spyhalski, Kate (Mike) Prusakiewicz, Peter (Becca) Spyhalski, Philip, Mary, Matthew and Mark Spyhalski and Nicole and Robert Hawley; dear friends, Tim and Brad Gordon and many great nieces and nephews, aunts, uncles, cousins and friends. In addition to his parents he was also preceded in death by his brother, Ken Hawley.
Funeral service will take place at 12:00 p.m. on Monday, February 21, 2022 at the Gephart Funeral Home. Visitation will take place on Monday from 10:00 a.m. until the time of service. Memorial cards for the Autism Foundation or the Special Olympics will be available at the funeral home.
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Dr. Earl Jay Hawley, please visit our flower store.

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