Dr. Elise Hoffman Brinkley
Dr. Elise Hoffman Brinkley (Ima Elise Gay), former Nurse Educator/Director, died Thursday, January 16, 2014, after a long battle with Alzheimer’s complicated by a recent fall. She is survived by her daughter in Sugar Land, Dr. Mazie Hoffman Leftwich and husband Brent, and daughter Dr. Rosilyn Hoffman Overton and husband Mardiros Hatsakorzian of New York, along with grandchildren Cinnamon Peschel Fuentes and husband Adrian, Barkley Peschel and wife Jill, Lori Leftwich, and Amy Leftwich Benson and husband Captain James Benson, all of Sugar Land; grandson Adam Overton and wife Christin of Seattle, Washington, and grandson Aaron Overton of Baltimore, Maryland. Great grandchildren include Caden, Gracie and Bella Peschel, Skylar and Satine Fuentes, Logan Benson, Nathan and Allyssa Overton, and Elizabeth, Courtney, and Gregory Overton. There are numerous nieces and nephew survivors as well. She was born in Barry, Texas, March 10, 1922, and is preceded in death by her parents, James Edward and Laura Jack Foster Gay of Barry, Texas, her first husband, Billy C. Hoffman of Richmond and second husband, Roger B. Brinkley of Meadows Place, Texas, along with brothers and sisters who had lived in Arizona and the Dallas/Corsicana area: Kenneth Gay, Celeste Gay, Christine Butler, Mae Lyons, Kate Lewis, Francis Moore and Jimmy Dale Gay. She leaves behind a very dear friend and her loving caregiver for the past 5 years, Ms. Pat Standard, LVN, of Meadows Place, Texas.
Dr. Brinkley was a beloved Mother, Grandmother and Great-Grandmother who was always kind and loving, was filled with a Christian faith that she lived-out daily, and gave of herself selflessly throughout her entire life. She was also a brilliant and successful woman who accomplished much throughout her entire life. As a high school student she excelled academically but also was the Captain of the Basketball team, winning County then State honors and was selected to the All-Star Team; additionally being named All-State Guard and All-Staff Forward both her Junior and Senior year. The team called her ‘legs’ as she was their tallest member. She went on into her early adulthood to work tirelessly in a plant building airplanes in the World War II efforts, and was the proverbial ‘Rosie the Riveter’. Following a near-fatal auto accident in 1943, she beat all the odds and her doctor’s prognosis by surviving, learning to walk again, and eventually giving birth to a second child. This strong-will and determination continued to propel her forward as she first became a LVN (nurse), then earned her RN from Hermann Hospital in Houston and ran the Operating and ER at Polly Ryan Hospital in Richmond. Eventually she returned to the academic world to earn a BS and MS in Nursing, a BA in Psychology and a MEd in Guidance and Counseling; and finally her EdD – Doctorate of Education from Nova University. She was the Director of the LVN School of Nursing at Polly Ryan Hospital for many years prior to it becoming a part of WCJC. She went on to become the Director of the ADN School of Nursing at Alvin Community College, for 20 years, where students and instructors loved her dearly for her exceptional skills of teaching and her great kindnesses. After retiring from nursing, she became a LPC (Licensed Professional Counselor) and a BCIA (Biofeedback Therapist Certified / Institute of American). During this second career she worked with her daughter, Dr. Mazie Leftwich, in her Counseling Clinic in Richmond and then went on to be Director of the Biofeedback Clinic at Orchard Creek Hospital in Rosenberg until her second and final retirement.
Professional Associations and Honors include: Texas and American Nurses Association; National League for Nursing; Deans and Directors of Nursing Schools of Texas; Who’s Who in American Professional Organizations; Who’s Who in American Women; International Who’s Who in Education; American Institute of Biofeedback and the Fort Bend Health Council, as well as many, many others.
Her Community and Civic involvement includes: Texas Honorary Life Member – National PTA (Parent-Teacher Association) and President, Texas PTA; she was very active during the Mothers March on Polio from 1938 – the mid-60s that eventually irradiated the disease’; District President and Grand Nobel, Rebekah Lodge (Rosenberg); had leadership roles in the American Heart Association, American Red Cross, Salvation Army; was a Girl Scout and 4-H Leader, Band and Choir Booster President – Lamar CISD; and longtime Bible Student and Sunday School teacher. She was an active member of St. John’s United Methodist Church, Richmond, for over 50 years, and for the past 25 years has been an active member of Sugar Land United Methodist Church and a Sunday School teacher of the Fellowship Class.
Dr. Brinkley was truly an amazing women; she will be missed by her family although they are rejoicing in her resurrection, knowing she is with all her family in heaven, and is free from pain and the horrible disease of Alzheimer’s.
The Memorial Service was held Tuesday, January 21, 2014, at 11:00 am at Sugar Land United Methodist Church, 431 Eldridge Road, Sugar Land, Texas 77478. Donations may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association of Houston and Southeast Texas – Research; or to the Funeral Guild at Sugar Land United Methodist Church. Friends and Family are invited to join the celebration of Elise’s wonderful life.
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