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Rowena Mae (Cox) Hawley

June 6, 1931 ~ July 6, 2023 (age 92) 92 Years Old


On July 6, 2023, well-known Winchester icon Rowena Hawley passed from our sight.

Known for her beautiful homes, flamboyant style, and infectious laughter, Rowena was a self-made businesswoman who forged her path with little assistance and no formal training.  Her leopard-print accessories, trademark jet-black hair, and “Rowena Red” lipstick and nails were a familiar and welcome sight around her long-time home in eastern Indiana, where she knew no strangers and many loyal friends.

Born and raised in rural Randolph County, Rowena had the entrepreneurial drive of her father Wendell Cox, and after trying common businesses like selling cosmetics and cookware, she chose to combine her talent for beautiful decorating with her desire for financial independence by creating a series of popular rental properties notable for their New Orleans-style lamps and distinct landscaping.

So singular and prolific were Rowena’s creations that in 1994 she was named “Citizen of the Year” by the Winchester Chamber of Commerce. The plaque they presented cited “Outstanding Restoration and Beautification of Many Properties in the Community of Winchester”.

Failing health and the subsequent decline of her beloved properties cannot dim the bright memory of this exceptional and successful woman.

Daughter of the late Wendell V. Cox and Mabel Austin Cox and sister to Austin Cox, w. Leatha, Richmond IN, she is preceded in death by her daughter Rosalyn Amsbury and her grandson Russell Reeves. She is survived by her daughter Vivian Schafer Reeves, Brookston IN, her son, Nathan Hawley, Winchester IN, nine grandchildren, Aaron Amsbury, Tipton IN, Matthew Amsbury, w. Toni, Kokomo, IN, Danan Amsbury, w. Alicia, Sheridan IN, Aleshia Rohrer, h. Steve, Frederick, MD, Marcus Reeves, w. Tonya, Westfield, IN, Emma, Lily, Alexis, and Nathaniel Hawley, Winchester, IN, and 6 great-grandchildren, Breanna Schafer, h. Joshua, Kokomo IN, Brooke Amsbury, Kokomo IN, Isaiah Amsbury, w. Rebecca, Indianapolis IN, Noah Amsbury, w. Elisabeth, Fishers IN, Grace Rohrer, Frederick MD, Julian Reeves, Westfield IN.

A service to celebrate the life of Rowena will be at 1:00 p.m., on Friday, July 14, 2023, at the Walker Funeral Home in Winchester, with Steve McCoy officiating.  Burial will follow at the Fountain Park Cemetery in Winchester. 

Friends and family may call from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., on Friday at the funeral home.  In lieu of flowers, donations in Rowena’s name may be made to Alzheimer's Association, 50 91st St #100, Indianapolis, IN 46240. 

Walker Funeral Home in Winchester is entrusted with the arrangements. Online condolences may be shared with the family at

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Rowena Mae (Cox) Hawley, please visit our floral store.

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July 14, 2023

11:00 AM to 1:00 PM
Walker Funeral Home
248 E. South St.
Winchester, IN 47394

Funeral Service
July 14, 2023

1:00 PM
Walker Funeral Home
248 E. South St.
Winchester, IN 47394


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