The Duncan Banner
After a long struggle with Alzheimer’s disease and a brief battle with congestive heart failure, Lois (Marie) Payne Hanna gently expired on Nov. 20, 2013, at the Lakes Nursing Facility in Oklahoma City.
Lois was born on Feb. 10, 1920, to Thomas Hardwick Payne and Bessie Bird Payne in Duncan. Early on, her far-sighted grandfather, Thomas Hamilton Payne, enlisted the family on the Dawes rolls, which provided Lois a formative education at St. Elizabeth’s School in Purcell.
Some years after she graduated from Duncan High School in 1938, she moved to Oklahoma City and enrolled in the Oklahoma City School of Law (currently OCU), where she met her future husband, James Cullen Hanna. In 1961, she secured employment with the architecture firm of Coston, Frankfurt, Short (now Frankfurt Short Brusa) and rose from a secretarial position to retire in 1989 as a member of the firm’s board of directors.
It was from this career position that Mrs. Hanna began her lengthy membership in Executive Women Incorporated serving in many capacities including president. In later life, she fondly recalled the places and people that this association had afforded her.
While her sharp mind maintained a keen interest in a myriad of subjects, her main focus was on just a few. Aside from her whole family — her offspring, her siblings, her sibling’s offspring, in-laws and everything in-between — which she cherished above all else, her great passions in life were music, literature, history, Sooner football and all things Oklahoman.
Her enthusiasm for music and above all, opera brought her great happiness. She delighted in being a proud patron of the Oklahoma City Symphony, holding season tickets for more than 30 consecutive years. Last year, Mrs. Hanna was honored when the Chickasaw tribe recognized her as a senior member of the tribe and presented her with a commemorative brooch.
Lois was preceded in death by her parents, Thomas Hardwick and Bessie Bird Payne; her husband, James Cullen Hanna; her sisters, Anna Laura Strong, Dora Faye Yeager, Patricia Gabriela (Patty Gay) Payne; and brother, Thomas Hardwick Payne. Mrs. Hanna is survived by her three sons, Fred Hanna, Tom Hanna and John Hanna; her daughter–in–law Gabrielle Hanna; her grandsons, Brandon Hanna, Travis Hanna, and Cameron Hanna, children of Fred and Gabrielle, and her great-grandson Jack Hanna, son of Brandon.
Lois will forever be remembered for the tender kindness that she shined on those that were closest to her and the warm glow of genuine charity with which she embraced all that were lucky enough to be close to her for however momentary. She will be dearly missed by all those who knew, and therefore, loved her.