Mary Carolyn (Kay) Hughes
January 1, 1931 - March 4, 2022
Mary Carolyn (Kay) Hughes, 91, was called back to the Lord on March 4, 2022. She was born to the late Leonard and Mary Martha Gardner on January 1, 1931 in Wilmington, DE. Kay graduated from P.S. DuPont High School in 1949 and received her Registered Nursing license from The Delaware School of Nursing in 1951. She married the love of her life, the late James E. Hughes in 1952 and enjoyed 50 wonderful years together while raising their six children.
Kay was a kind, compassionate, generous and loving soul, who found great joy in the little things life offered her. Growing up in Wilmington, she would talk about taking the train by herself at the age of 10 to Cordova, MD to visit her grandparents. She loved tending the chickens, milking the cows and visiting her grandfather’s general store. As a teenager she loved going to school dances, playing the piano, and helping to care for her younger sister and brother.
After she married, she worked as a nurse at the VA Hospital in Elsmere DE. She and her husband opened an antique store, the White Elephant, which began their lifelong journey with antiques. They continued their passion by selling antiques and vintage collectibles at Booth’s Corner for over 20 years until Kay moved to Rehoboth Beach DE in 2004 after her husband passed away. She continued to this day to sell antiques and has had a booth at The Barn Door located in Gumboro, DE for years. Her knowledge of antiques and their providence was remarkable.
She also loved acting in the Drama League, living at the beach, swimming in her pool, making new friends, joining clubs like “The Red Hat Ladies”, and attending both high school and Nursing school reunions. Kay was fiercely proud of her children and their families and always shared accomplishments and milestones.
Kay was preceded in death by her sister and brother-in-law, June and Bob Adkins and her brother and sister-in-law, Leonard and Janet Gardner. Kay will be greatly missed by her surviving six children: David (Lynne), Connie, Linda (Mitchell), Diane (John), Steve (Dina), Jim (Nancy). She is also survived by 12 grandchildren and 17 great-grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews.
She loved all types of animals and especially enjoyed taking care of her rescued cats. In lieu of flowers, kindly make donations in memory of Kay Hughes to Faithful Friends Animal Society. You may donate online at https://faithfulfriends.us/donate/donate-in-memory-honor/.
A visitation for family and friends will be held from 10 am until 11 am on Wednesday, March 16, 2022, at Spicer-Mullikin Funeral Home, 1000 N. DuPont Parkway, New Castle, DE, followed by a funeral service at 11 am. Interment will be held privately. The family kindly requests that face masks be worn by all in attendance, regardless of vaccination status.