Surrounded by his children, Pastor Cecil Hawkins, 80, went home to be with the Lord and his loving wife on April 28, 2018.
Born in Crow Agency, Montana, in 1938, he was the son of Heron (Glenn) and Ella Hawkins. Cecil graduated from Billings Senior High and served six years in the U.S. Marine Corp. Cecil began boxing in his youth and continued that throughout his military career. After serving in the Marines, Cecil returned to Montana, where he met and married Arlene Seibel on June 25, 1962, in Hardin, Montana. They were best friends and each other’s loving support for over 54 years.
Arlene and Cecil spent their early years together on their ranch east of Billings, where they raised their five children and several foster children. In addition to ranching, Cecil also drove oil tankers and owned Hawkins Whole Hog Sausage.
In 1986, they moved from the ranch to Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, where Cecil attended and graduated magna cum laude with a degree in theology from Oklahoma Baptist Institute. In 1989, Cecil became ordained as an Independent Baptist minister and received a calling to pastor his first church in Elk City, Oklahoma. In 1993, Cecil and Arlene felt called to return to Montana, where he served as asst. pastor, Sunday School teacher and spiritual leader. While in Billings, Cecil also owned and operated Hawkins Timber, Calvary Trucking and Pulpit Supply Ministry, which provided circuit preaching and pastoral services throughout Montana, Wyoming and North Dakota. During this time, Cecil also authored the book, “Proverbs – by Subject; a Pastor’s Guide to Counseling and Study.”
Above all else, Pastor Hawkins was a man of his word and a devout Christian who enjoyed actively sharing his faith in Jesus Christ as his personal Savior. Cecil was also a man of great humor who believed that laughter was the best medicine and always had a joke readily available and a story to tell. Even to the end, his family and friends were blessed by his contagious humor and pranks.
Cecil is survived by his cherished mother-in-law, Mollie Seibel; daughter Verale (David) Hall; son Tim (Tami) Hawkins; daughter Karen (Ben) Blonski; grandchildren (Steffany, Stacy, Dawn, Shawn, Rik, Jade, Ben, Taylen and Tacie); and 11 great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his loving wife, Arlene; his mother and father; sister Della; son Danny (Patti); and daughter Christine.
Visitation will be from 4 to 8 p.m. Thursday, May 3, at Michelotti-Sawyers Mortuary, 1001 Alderson Ave. Celebration of his life will be at 11 a.m. Friday, May 4, at the Yellowstone Christian College, 1515 Shiloh Road, Billings. Interment will follow at 1 p.m. in Yellowstone County National Veteran’s Cemetery, 55 Buffalo Trail Road, Laurel. A fellowship luncheon will follow at Emmanuel Baptist Church, 328 S. Shiloh, Billings.