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Rex Hailey funeral 11am St. Paul’s Berlin

September 14, 2017 @ 11:00 am

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12/28/1946 to 9/6/2017

Mayor Rex Wayne Hailey, age 70, passed on to a better place on Friday, September 1, 2017 at the Harrison House Nursing and Rehab Center in Snow Hill. Born in Baltimore, he was the son of the late Rex and Nancy Adkins Hailey. He is survived by his beloved wife of 34 years, Shirley Chenoweth Hailey, AKA “Shirley Toms” and children Amanda Pennewell of Berlin, and Jeremy Pennewell of Edgewater, NJ. He was an adored grandfather to Brooks and Liam McCready. Preceding him in death were two sisters, Doris Oliver and Lillian McCoy, and his Pug Cheswick. Also surviving are 2 nieces, Nancy, Susan, and sister-niece Linda, four nephews, four step children, and their adopted Turkish family.

Rex graduated from Patterson High School, and University of Baltimore. While living in Baltimore he had been the curator of the Edgar Allen Poe Museum in Baltimore. After moving to Ocean City in the early 70’s, he was employed with Irv Banium in the management of his Quality Inn Motel properties on 17th and 33rd St. for many years. He had been a realtor with O’Conner, Piper, & Flynn, and Long and Foster Realty, and served as a Berlin Town Councilman for 8 years and then as Mayor from 1996-2004. He was a member of St. Paul By-the-Sea Episcopal Church in Ocean City where he had served as crucifer, lector and Eucharistic minister, Junior and Senior Warden, twice, and member of the Vestry.

Rex loved the ocean, beach, boardwalk, planting beautiful flowers, reading, music, taking kids on trips and singing off key in the choir. He also had a special place in his heart for his 2002 red Thunderbird. Rex had an infectious smile, a wonderful sense of humor and a great love for people. He will be missed by all who knew and loved him.

The family would like to express their deepest gratitude to Dr. Lawrence Kemp, Coastal Hospice care givers Courtney, Amy, Mary Lou, and Arnold, the wonderful staff at the Harrison House who took excellent care of for the 8 weeks he was there, and Michael, Craig, and William who cared for Rex at home. Many thanks to our St. Paul’s family for their prayers, support and thoughtfulness

A memorial service will be held on Thursday, September 14, 2017 at 11:00 AM at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church on Church St. in Berlin. Rev. Matt D’Amerio will officiate. Interment will be at a later date. In lieu of flowers, a donation in his memory may be made to: St. Paul’s-By-the-Sea Episcopal Church, 302 Baltimore Ave. Ocean City, MD, 21842, or Coastal Hospice, P.O. Box 1733, Salisbury, MD 21804. Arrangements are in the care of the Burbage Funeral Home in Berlin.



From the desk of Fr. Matt:

“But the souls of the righteous are in the hand of God,
and no torment will ever touch them.
In the eyes of the foolish they seemed to have died,
and their departure was thought to be a disaster,
and their going from us to be their destruction;
but they are at peace.
For though in the sight of others they were punished,
their hope is full of immortality.
Having been disciplined a little, they will receive great good,
because God tested them and found them worthy of himself”


Beloved in Christ:


There are certain journeys that we take as a congregation. Because we are one body, we are able to accompany one another on their individual journey as well. I feel that, as a loving family, we have accompanied Rex Hailey on his particular path as he and Shirley faced the challenges of his health. Each of us have particular and fond remembrances of the time we cherish and were able to spend with Rex.


Today, Rex has taken another step in his journey toward salvation. Shirley has lovingly given Rex back to the loving and faithful God who has given Rex to us. This afternoon, Rex Hailey died surrounded by his loving and faithful wife and family at the Harrison House.


Shirley has anticipated this, as have the congregation who loved him so tenderly. There is pain in the moment of loss, but we are certain in the faithfulness of God, who in His Word, has assured us that Rex is going to prepare a place for us and will greet us when we are welcomed into the Kingdom.


Shirley has indicated that the plans for our congregational tribute to Rex are still pending. Please keep posted as we announce the particulars. In your charity, please remember Shirley and her family in your prayers and pray for the peaceful repose of the soul of a true gentleman, Rex Hailey.


(The Rev’d) Matthew Justin D’Amario

XX Rector

St. Paul’s by-the-Sea Episcopal Church

302 North Baltimore Avenue

Ocean City, MD  21842


Office (410) 289-3453

Cell     (443) 610-8533


September 14, 2017
11:00 am