She was born in San Antonio on Aug. 7, 1931 to William Wheeler Pettus and Sally Gee Pettus and attended and graduated from public school in Goliad, where she excelled in tennis and basketball.
She carried fond memories of her classmates all of her life and was faithful in attendance of class reunions. Her graduate studies began at S.L.I. in Lafayette, La., and concluded at the University of Texas at Austin where she pursued pre-med studies and graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in psychology in 1952.
After her graduation, she applied for and was accepted for admissions to the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston, which was quite an accomplishment for a woman during that time.
In 1952, she married Joseph A. Cohn Jr. from Bishop, who was a recent graduate of the University of Texas Law School. To his great tribute, she gave up her opportunity for a medical education to become a dedicated, loving, wife and mother. Her children and their families were the delight of her life as she watched and encouraged each of the children in their growth and development, instilling in them a love and appreciation of family, a need for full and productive lives and to respect the lives of others. The qualities she urged on her family she more than exemplified herself.
As a member of the following organizations in her adopted new hometown for 61 years, accepting leadership roles in all and president in many, Honey Cohn believed that to be a member was to be worker, and had no quarrel with the philosophy of “lead, follow or get out of the way.”
These organizations were Charity League of Corpus Christi, Junior League of Corpus Christi, Symphony Guild, Lawyers Wives Auxiliary of Corpus Christi, Alter Guild and Jenette Hammer Guild of the Church of the Good Shepherd, Art Museum of South Texas where she served on the board of trustees for 14 years, La Retama Club, Antiques & Flowers Club, Las Donas de la Corte, and The Order of De Pineda of Corpus Christi.
She also decorated Corpus Christi’s galas from one end to another and they were always beautiful. She particularly enjoyed her early Junior League work of helping to educate the public and public officials of the need to include in public education, the awareness of the needs of the young readers suffering from dyslexia, as a condition to be addressed and not as an inability to learn.
While she was able to trace her family to early England, she was particularly proud of being a sixth-generation Texan. Honey was a direct descendant of William Pettus of Virginia who came to Texas as a member of Stephen F. Austin’s Colony in 1822 as one of the “Old Three Hundred” and who served in the Texas early assembly that issued the Texas Declaration of Independence and served in the resulting revolution.
She is survived by her husband of 61 years, former Judge Joseph A. Cohn Jr.; three sons; eight grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren; son William Joseph Cohn and wife Donja Cohn of Austin; grandchildren John Joseph, Elizabeth Arleigh, Justin Wayne and Chad Michael; great-grandchildren Ethan Joseph and Hannah Madison; son James Fletcher Cohn and wife Frances Howell Cohn of San Antonio; and son Mark Jarrell Cohn and wife Kathleen Cohn of Billings, Mont.; and grandchildren, Kaitlin Kearney, Kylie Catherine, Christopher Joseph, and Kellie Kathleen.
She is also survived by her sister June Pettus, nephew Jefferson B. P. Spires, both of Victoria, niece Sidney and husband James Mangum of Mason and cousins James M. Pettus III and Shannon Mayo of Corpus Christi.
Honey will always be remembered for her love of life, wonderful sense of humor, love of family and friends and unconditional generosity. She has enriched the lives of all that knew her and will be greatly missed.
In lieu of flowers, friends may make contributions to St. Stephens Episcopal Church, 137 S. Chilton Ave, Goliad, TX 77963; The Presidio La Bahia, P.O. Box 57, Goliad, TX 77963; The Women’s Shelter of South Texas, P.O. Box 3368, Corpus Christi, TX 78463 or the charity of their choice.
To view tribute, please visit www.seasidefuneral.com.