She was born on April 23, 1924, in Manton, Ky., to Lee and Nelis (Howard) Stephens and was was raised in the family home alongside her sisters: Hazel, Thelma, JoAnn and Virginia; and her brothers: Talmadge, Holt and Rabin. Hancford, or Hank as she was usually known, attended local schools and went on to graduate from Martin High School in 1944. Not to be forgotten during Hank’s years in high school was her introduction to the young man who would forever hold the key to her heart. His name was Charlie Layne, and they began dating as high school students and became high school sweethearts. On Sept. 16, 1950, the couple was married at their pastor’s home in Manton, Ohio.
Hank primarily stayed home to care for her home and family that grew to include their daughter, Priscilla, and her son, Charles. While living in Martin she had been a dental assistant for a time. Their final move was from Kentucky to South Whitley, Indiana. In 1956 she worked at Whitley Products and from 1967 through 1968 Hank briefly worked at Chamberlain Products, but other than these few brief times in the workforce she was a dedicated housewife. She was an amazing cook, and her family loved everything she made with her butterscotch pie and cream pull candy being among their favorites. Hank quilted, crocheted, and was a talented seamstress who even made dresses for her granddaughters.
She is survived by her daughter: Priscilla (Terry) Brandenburg, South Whitley; son: Charles Colin Layne, South Whitley; grandchildren: Tera (Chad) Castle, Tracey (Rachel) Brandenburg; great-grandchildren: Blake, Keaton and Kelsie Castle, Claire, Audra, Julie and Sarah Brandenburg; brother: Rabin (Tess) Stephens, Alvarado, Texas; sister: Virginia Weber, South Whitley; sisters-in-law: Pauline Layne and Georgia Layne Martin, Kentucky; brother- and sister-in-law: Bert and Janice Layne, Kentucky.
Hank was preceded in death by her parents; husband: Charlie Layne; sisters: Hazel Yates, Thelma Miller and JoAnn Richardson; brothers: Talmadge and Holt Stephens.
Visitation will be held from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 12, at DeMoney-Grimes, a Life Story Funeral Home, 600 Countryside Drive, Columbia City. Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m., Monday, Oct. 13, 2014, at the funeral home with Pastor Steve Massie officiating. Burial will follow at South Whitley Cemetery.
Memorial gifts may be given in Mrs. Layne’s memory to Riley Children’s Hospital or Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital of St. Vincent.