Doris Eileen Mahaffey Starkey, 81, of Early, graduated from this life Sunday, July 15, 2007. She is survived by her husband, Harold Starkey; her son, Brett Starkey and his wife Tammy; her daughter, Jill Locke; and her grandchildren—the lights of her life—Dixie Eileen Locke, Leslie Dawn Starkey, Hope Renee’ Starkey and Scott Bryan Locke. She is also survived by her three remaining siblings, Dr. Kathleen Mahaffey, Bonnie Humphreys and her husband, Jack, and Jim Mahaffey and his wife, Kathryn, as well as numerous nieces and nephews.

Doris was born Sept. 18, 1925, in Cotton County, Okla., where she lived on the family farm in Devol, Okla., until age 14. Her entire family then moved to Norman, Okla., where Doris finished high school and graduated from the University of Oklahoma in 1947. After a few years of being a “young chick,” Doris married Harold Ray Starkey in 1952.

In addition to being a wife and homemaker for 55 years and “the best mama we ever had,” Doris worked as a home demonstration agent as well as a kindergarten, junior-high, and high school teacher. The Starkeys settled in the Brownwood area in 1972, and Doris worked for the Brownwood Independent School system until her retirement in 1986. Doris enjoyed playing cards, sewing, going to garage sales, preparing family dinners where there was always too much to eat, and feeding turkey to her favorite “Old Cat.”

Doris was preceded in death by her parents, Eugene Merle Mahaffey and Dixie Xeline Watson Mahaffey Smith, and her sisters Xie Cornelius and Enid Shirley. In honor of Doris’s “going home,” a Celebration of Life service will be held at Heartland Funeral Home at 2 p.m. Saturday, July 28, 2007. In lieu of flowers, a donation can be made to the charity of your choice in her behalf. Friends are invited to sign the guestbook at