Mabel Hodges was born and lived her life in Oneonta, New York. She never married and lived with her sister Mary; they were fondly called "M&M."
Mabel's day began with the WDOS radio morning show, The Daily Star and later, Paul Harvey. She worked for Fox Hospital, then the City of Oneonta in many positions for 30 years.
Her loves were water skiing, photography and video taping all trips and events of her numerous nieces and nephews and their families; dressing up for Halloween; football; trains and of course the space program!! Oh how she wanted to be an astronaut. :-)
The following is in her own words:
In my younger years, I made model airplanes instead of playing with dolls. When my brother Fred joined that Air Corps in WWII, he sent me many pictures of airplanes, which thrilled me! He was killed in WWII which devastated me, but I still loved airplanes.
Airplanes led to the space program and I am thoroughly engrossed in that! I have met some of the astronauts...Jack Lousma who thrilled me to no end by asking ME if he could have a copy of videotape of the launch he went up on. When I sent it to him, he sent me many pictures of his flight, including his autograph, stating "You Saw My Lift Off _ Here's Where I Docked!" I also met Frank Borman at Kennedy Space Center during one of his missions. I have seen three live missions.
I have always wanted to go into space, but as the years went by, I know that I had less and less of a chance to do so. Recently, I read how I could achieve it through your company, so I JUMPED at the chance. :-) Thank you very much for making this possible. The space program has benefited mankind many fold and it continues to do so today.
KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK, "NASA"
Mabel's life "Endeavor" was her "Don't worry, be happy" philosophy which as the "Challenger" she was, she passed on to others with her wit and her smile. Her "Discovery" was her love of life, which often landed her a picture in The Daily Star. Her final wish of "Fly Me to the Moon" will be fulfilled with her ashes being rocketed into space, making her the "Explorer" she always wanted to be. :-)
Mabel's brother Francis said this quote is everything Mabel would have Loved:
"Oh, I have slipped the surly bonds of earth and danced the skies on laughter silvered wings...And while with silent lifting mind I've trod the high untrespassed sanctity of space...Put out my hand and touched the face of God."
We will definitely miss our Auntie Mabel and our many adventures with her. :-) Remember her rules of life: Smile and laugh at least once a day, live one day at a time to the fullest, be generous to others in any way you can, listen, and finally
"Never Grow Up."
When you look up and see the Moon and stars, remember she is up there in orbit
Enjoy Mabel, Enjoy throughout all Eternity
Your Loving Family