Margaret Ellen (Burkey) Hast of Fayetteville, NC, 86, passed away April 27, 2020, after facing deteriorating health issues over the past year.
Margaret is predeceased just over a year by her husband of 58 years, George L. Hast. As her memory diminished, she retained the knowledge that he had departed and missed him daily. She passed sitting peacefully in her chair, an ever-present book in her lap.
She is survived by daughter, Mary Beth Clark and husband Tom of Frederick, MD; daughter, Michele Smith and husband Ron of Pasadena, MD; daughter, Maureen Hast of Frederick, MD; son, Raymond Hast and wife Angela of Hope Mills, NC; and her eight grandchildren, Melissa (and husband Mark Lombard), Morgan, Amelia, Drew, Rachel, Carter, Bailey and Abby.
She is predeceased by her parents Charles “Ray” and Honora (Winner) Burkey, formerly of Cumberland; her sister, Dorothy Blake and her husband Ronnie; and her brother, James Burkey. She is survived by her sister-in-law, Jane Heavner and brother-in-law, Richard Hast both of Cumberland, MD; brother-in-law, James Hast and his wife Kathy of Westernport, MD; and numerous nieces and nephews from the Burkey and Hast lineage.
Margaret was born in Cumberland, MD in 1933, attended Catholic Girls Central High School and Frostburg State Teachers College, which was later renamed Frostburg State University. She started her teaching career then married George Hast in 1960, who she met at the Chevrolet dealership after she wrecked her corvette. After a sabbatical as a stay-at-home mom, Margaret returned to her passion of teaching at St. Patrick’s School then St. John Neuman School, Cumberland, MD as a 5th grade teacher. When George was transferred to the Kelly Springfield plant in Fayetteville, NC in 1984, she counted herself lucky to teach 5th grade once again at St. Patrick School, this time in Fayetteville, NC where she remained until her retirement. Many of her students reminisce about their time with Mrs. Hast. She took great pride in being an educator, a passion that has been handed down to her daughter and two granddaughters.
While she was “vertically challenged” you would never know from her bigger than life personality, wicked sense of humor and infectious laugh. Every holiday was an opportunity to don a costume and she enjoyed leading the St. Patrick School parade as the honorary leprechaun. She attended every performance of every play her girls participated in at Bishop Walsh High School; those seated around her found her mirth contagious.
Margaret was very active in her Catholic faith and in the parishes she belonged. She was an ordained Eucharistic Minister for over 30 years and a Tribunal Advocate for the Archdiocese of Raleigh, NC. After her retirement, Margaret became a docent at the Museum of the Cape Fear Historical Complex and volunteered at The Care Clinic in Fayetteville. As her mobility was impaired later in life, she was comforted by the weekly visits from her fellow Eucharistic Ministers from St. Patrick Parish, Fayetteville, NC.
Those who knew Margaret recognized she was never shy in offering her opinion, which was tempered by a strong moral compass. She missed being surrounded by her family after moving to North Carolina and looked forward to a full house during summers and Thanksgiving when all the kids and grandkids would come to stay.
Due to the current COVID-19 situation, no formal service will be conducted at this time. The family will share information about a funeral Mass to celebrate her life once possible. We ask you keep Margaret and those that loved her in your thoughts and prayers.
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