Mary "Dayo" Lorene Hagan

Oct 20, 1920 - Apr 27, 2015


Mary L. Hagan “Dayo”, a longtime resident and community leader of Rancho Cordova, passed away on April 27, 2015, at the age of 94. Dayo was born on October 20, 1920, in Wimer, Oklahoma to a first generation German father and a three-fourths blood Cherokee Indian mother. She was the youngest of seven children.

Dayo was married to her high school sweetheart, Paul Hagan, for 50 years until his death in 1988. She was also preceded in death by her beloved daughter Paula Popovich and her grandson John Hagan. Dayo is survived by her children Steve Hagan (Debbie) and Brenda Deckwa (Tim), son-in-law John Popovich, her grandchildren Julie Belka (Ronnie), Lori Popovich (Neil), Kristin Shinden (Derek), Bryan and Rachel Pavelchik, her great-grandchildren Jasmine, Shane, Maya, Trevor and Sean. She is also survived by numerous nieces and nephews in California, Oklahoma and Texas.

Dayo graduated from high school in Nowata, Oklahoma and attended Northeastern State College in Talequah. She and Paul were married in 1938. After Paul’s service in the Army Air Corps during World War II, they moved their family to San Francisco, California. Dayo worked at Macy’s on Union Square while Paul completed his college education at San Francisco State. The family moved to Redding and then to Willows where Paul was the Superintendent of Parks and Recreation for the City and the high school’ s JV football and basketball coach. Dayo was the Manager of the Willows Chamber of Commerce. The family moved to Rancho Cordova in 1960 when Paul was hired as the first Administrator for Cordova Recreation and Park District. Hagan Community Park was later named in his honor prior to his retirement. Dayo was employed by Loomis Chamber of Commerce and later Cordova Realty. She was appointed to the California State Republican Central Committee and was a delegate at the Republican National Convention in 1968. In 1969, Dayo was appointed by Henry Kloss, 5th District Supervisor of Sacramento County, as his administrative assistant. Dayo represented Supervisor Kloss at meetings throughout his District and at local, state and congressional hearings promoting Sacramento County projects, including Sacramento Metro Chamber of Commerce’s annual “Cap to Cap” trip to Washington, D.C. Dayo was a candidate for Kloss’ supervisorial seat when he retired in 1978. She was the top vote-getter in the primary election, but lost the general election to Toby Johnson. Shortly afterward, she assisted in organizing the Labor and Business Alliance of the Capitol Area (LABA), a group of business and labor leaders, and served as its Executive Director for eight years.

After Paul passed away from cancer, Dayo raised funds in his memory to make improvements at Sutter Memorial Hospital’s Cancer Wing for patients undergoing chemotherapy. She was appointed by Congressman Robert Matsui to the Sacramento Area Commission on Mather AFB Conversion and by the Sacramento County Board of Supervisors to the County Policy Planning Commission. Dayo was also a strong supporter of Rancho Cordova’s incorporation and was very proud when it became a city in 2003.

Dayo was a member of the Rancho Cordova Area Chamber of Commerce, Rancho Cordova Community Council, Rotary Club of Rancho Cordova, Inner Wheel of Rancho Cordova, American River Grange, Cordova High Sports Club, Sutter Hospital Cornerstone Club, Sacramento Traditional Jazz Society, Order of the Eastern Star, Republican National Committee, and the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian.

Paul and Dayo were lifelong partners who were devoted to each other, their family, their friends, and their community. Together, they were instrumental in organizing the Rancho Cordova Area Chamber of Commerce, the National AAU Synchronized Swim Meet and California Police Olympics, both of which were held in Rancho Cordova, and Mather AFB’s Allied Training Program for foreign students. They also participated in Rancho Cordova Rotary Club’s Annual Holiday Food Basket Program. Both received numerous awards and honors for their many civic and charitable contributions, including Rotary’s highest award, the Paul Harris Fellow. Paul and Dayo loved to cook and entertain, and were noted for their great parties, particularly their annual Christmas party. They loved being with their family and celebrating each holiday, watching Cordova High, Oklahoma University and Stanford football games, and traveling to San Francisco and Carmel.

Dayo’s friendly and outgoing personality, fun-loving heart and joyful spirit continued throughout her entire life . She loved music and loved to sing and dance. For many years, she attended the Sacramento Jazz Jubilee from beginning to end. She also had a fondest for teddy bears and anything chocolate, and was particularly proud of her Cherokee Indian heritage.

Funeral services will be private. A Celebration of Life reception will be announced at a later date. In lieu of flowers, remembrances may be made to Sutter Cancer Center, 2800 L Street, Suite 620, Sacramento, CA 95816 or the Holiday Food Basket Program, Rotary Club of Rancho Cordova, P. O. Box 2666, Rancho Cordova, CA 95741.

Funeral Home:
East Lawn Mortuary
5757 Greenback Lane
Sacramento, CA
US 95841


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