NEWPORT-Funeral services for the youngest child of
Tennessee Gov. Ben W. Hooper are scheduled for Wednesday, June 9, at 11 a.m. at
Episcopal Church of the Annunciation.
Newell Sanders Hooper Hurd died late Sunday, June 6,
2010, at Baptist Convalescent Center after a period of declining health. She
The daughter of Gov. Hooper and his wife, the former
Annabelle Jones, she was born November 9, 1916 in the family's Newport home
after her father had served two terms (1911-1915) as Tennessee's governor. She
was named for her father's political ally Newell Sanders.
In 1920, after President Warren G. Harding appointed her
father Chairman of the U. S. Railroad Labor Board in Chicago, she and her
family moved to Illinois where she began her education.
They returned to Newport in the mid-1920s, and she
continued her studies at Newport Grammar School and Central High School (now
Cocke County High School).
After coming back to Tennessee, the Hoopers moved into a
farmhouse in Carson Springs and her father resumed his law practice.
As a pre-teen, Newell became her father's driver,
chauffeuring him from the family's home to his Newport office on a daily basis.
On one occasion, the two escaped serious injuries when a chicken flew into the
open-topped vehicle as they were coming into town.
On March 11, 1935, she married Edward Floyd Hurd, a young
attorney who came to Newport in 1931 to practice law with Dooley McSween and
George R. Shepherd.
The next year she was named the second Bristol
Virginia-Tennessee Dogwood Festival Queen.
The Hurds became the parents of four daughters: Jane,
Frances, Sandra, and Annabelle. 1950s-1960s, she was involved in their
activities and at one time was a Brownie Scout leader.
She also taught ballroom dancing to a generation of Cocke
County teenagers of the same era.
Her civic contributions included charter membership in
The Clifton Club and William Cocke Chapter Daughters of the American
A member of several early Tennessee families, she was a
descendant of Major William Robinson, Judge James Randolph, and Samuel Chandler
Jones, all of whom were leading Cocke County citizens in the 19th century.
Her grandfather, Benjamin D. Jones, was the president of
the first bank in Cocke County and co-owner of the Newport Mill. He and his
wife, the former Townzella Jane Randoph, built Elm Hill, the large brick home
featuring a cupola and overlooking Newport, in 1885.
For many years she was an active member of First Baptist
Church of Newport. In 1969, she was confirmed into membership in Episcopal
Church of the Annunciation and served on the church's Mission Council on more
than one occasion.
In addition to her husband and parents, she was preceded
in death by one sister and three brothers.
In addition to her daughters, her immediate survivors
include twelve grandchildren and seventeen great-grandchildren. One sister,
Janella Hooper Carpenter, age 101, also survives.
Manes Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.