Avis E. (Burnham) Hokans

1932 ~ 2021 (age 88)


Avis E. (Burnham) Hokans, 88, of Westborough, passed away on Sunday, February 7, 2021 at UMass Medical Center in Worcester.

Born in Worcester, she was the daughter of the late Irene (Smith) and Leroy Burnham. Avis was raised in a 3 decker in Worcester with her two sisters Shirley and Olive. She spent her summers in Woodville at  SmiBurHo, the family's summer farm in Woodville.  Avis was a graduate of Worcester North High School and  shortly after graduation she met Henry Hokans who was a music student of her mother's. When Henry's tour of duty in Korea was over, they married. Henry had an opportunity to study in France and Avis join him.  She loved France and all it had to offer.  While Avis was there she learn to cook and became a fabulous chef.  When they returned they moved to Northborough. After her children were in school Avis worked for Bigelow Nursery in Northborough, later she moved on to Chase Paper in Westborough until it closed, then she worked as a medical secretary at Westborough State Hospital until she retired. Avis loved to garden and play tennis. However, her greatest joy was spending time with her family.   

She is survived by her children, Rebecca Nanof and her husband, Peter of Westborough; Rik Hokans and his wife, Carol of South Carolina; her grandchildren, Phillip Nanof and his wife, Jaci; Jillian  Nanof and her partner, James Barry; her great grandchildren, Brigham and Jameson Nanof; and Hayden Barry.

In addition to her parents, Avis is predeceased by her two sisters, Shirley Todd and Olive Thompson. 

Due to the Covid 19 pandemic, her funeral service will be held at a later date.
Memorial contributions may be sent in her memory to the Westborough Council on Aging, Senior Center,  4 Rogers Road, Westborough,  MA  01581   

Arrangements are under the care of the Morris Funeral Home, 40 Main Street, Southborough.  To leave words of condolence to the family, please visit

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