Piano Teacher to Many
LOGANVILLE - Doris Hancock “Miss Doris” Gasaway, 95, formerly of Jefferson, died Thursday, August 18, 2011.
A native of Jefferson, she was born July 15, 1916 and was the daughter of the late Homer and Ethel McElhannon Hancock, both of Jackson County. Doris was an accomplished pianist as a teen and graduated from Brenau College in Gainesville in 1937 with a degree in music. Upon graduation, she was accepted into the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia. When faced with the choice of going to Philadelphia and leaving her mother and brothers, she decided against the move and returned to Jackson County. Upon learning of her decision, her professor and mentor at Brenau College told her to “find a little house with a white picket fence and give your music to your community.” Mrs. Gasaway followed this advice for the next 70 years. She married Robert D. Gasaway Sr., who she met at the Roosevelt Theatre, “the picture show”, in Jefferson. They settled for several years in Cornelia, where she taught piano and served as the organist for the Cornelia Presbyterian Church. Some of her fondest memories came from playing the piano for the Appletree Theatre in Cornelia. In her later years, she moved back to Jefferson and served as the organist for the Jefferson Presbyterian Church. She also taught piano lessons to many people in the Habersham and Jackson County communities. During her life she played piano and organ for hundreds of weddings, civic events, and other special occasions.
Mrs. Gasaway was preceded in death by her husband, Robert D. “R.D.” Gasaway Sr.; and brothers, Nat Hancock Sr., Cecil Hancock, and Donald Hancock.
Survivors include her son, Robert D. “Bob” Gasaway Jr. and wife, Julie, Lawrenceville; grandsons, Robert D. “Dan” Gasaway III and wife, Shannon, Homer, Allen H. Gasaway, St. George, Utah, and David Gasaway and wife, Sara, of Loganville; and one great-granddaughter, Kilissa Gasaway, Loganville.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Jefferson Presbyterian Church, 243 Washington St., Jefferson, GA 30549 or in memory of Doris Hancock Gasaway to the Brenau Music Scholarship Program, Brenau University, Attn: Office of External Relations, 500 Washington St., SE, Gainesville, GA 30501.
A memorial service will be held at the Jefferson Presbyterian Church on Sunday, August 28, at 4 p.m. with the Rev. Doug Hilliard, officiating.