Marion Cooksey Adwell passed away with her family by her side on June 12, 2021, Tampa FL. Marion was born August 4, 1940, in Birmingham, AL to Frank W. and Marion Cooksey. She was married to Don W. Adwell on October 7, 1961 (pre-deceased November 5, 2020).
Marion is survived by her three sons, Don Wesley Adwell (Tammy), Mark Atticus Adwell (Jennifer), Stanley Keene Adwell (Christiane), her two sisters, Carolyn C. Elkerton and Dorothy “Cookie” C. Brown, and her grandchildren: Weston, Stadler, Shane, Maya and Isabella Adwell. Additionally, she is survived by her nieces and nephews: Sheri Garlock, Horace “Buddy” Brooks, Susanna Wright, Clint Brown, Amy Brown-Ward, Cindy Drake Owens, Karen Merrill, Larry Drake, Pam Kragen, David Drake, and Teddy Drake.
Sadly, our beautiful mother succumbed to a 10-year battle with Alzheimer's and more recently cancer. An amazing woman who displayed elegance, dignity and determination her entire life up through her last days. She was always a remarkably positive, upbeat and genuinely caring person to everyone she met. We learned from her constant laughter, kindness and genuineness that was naturally inherent in her spirit.
Mom’s beauty, grace and giving heart endeared her with love and admiration by all who knew her. First as a homemaker, and later as a business and community leader where she led by example, all while devoting her time to her husband, three boys and church. Mom’s faith in Jesus Christ positively impacted each of our lives and will continue to be our family’s compass.
Our mother recognized our individuality by making sure we experienced all possible childhood opportunities. She participated in school PTA, Cub Scouts, and our sports teams throughout the years. She was also involved in various garden clubs and horticultural events, and was an occasional freelance writer. As a young woman entrepreneur, up against all odds, with faith, support, and limited spare funds, her husband funded her dream of starting a retail plant and terrarium store with $50. She soon transformed that small dream, with the help of her husband and family, into one of the largest full-service flower businesses in Tampa - Outa Ma Tree Florist. For over 35 years, it was one of the top 500 Florists in the U.S. and received multiple nominations as Small Business of the Year. Her florist touched the lives of her employees, their families and customers for which she gave back generously. Through her genuine charm and ability to bring out the best in those around her, she was able to pass those qualities down through her devoted sons and grandchildren.
From an early age she was reaching for the stars, never settling for the status quo. An avid reader, writer, and communicator she constantly sought out personal, family and business growth. In a time when women were trying to break through the glass ceiling, our mom smashed it! To name a few, she became a leader in her community as the first woman and two-term president of the Town ‘N’ Country Chamber of Commerce, led and participated in many fundraising campaigns for city and community leaders, and founded the Evergreen Beautification Committee for her community’s highway medians. Marion is a big reason why our road medians are planted with flowers and trees today. At Wesley Memorial United Methodist Church, she was an Adult Sunday school teacher, choir member, generous contributor of weekly and special event flowers, and church board member.
What brought her the most pleasure in life was being surrounded by her husband, sons and family. Always keeping her sweet, cheerful personality, her giggles and smile remained with her until her final days. She was a beautiful woman and we all loved her dearly. She will be deeply missed, but never forgotten. We know she’s now at peace with our dad and he’s with his “Sweet Baby Angel” again.
The family would like to extend their deepest gratitude to Rob Loomis, Nancy Loomis, and the entire staff at A Country Place for the exceptional care and concern provided to our mom.
A private interment will be held at Bay Pines VA National Cemetery.
Flowers are welcome or in lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association in her memory at www.act.alz.org/donate.