Linda D. Hougland
Thursday 28th of November 1946 - Thursday 18th of May 2023
Linda D. Hougland passed away peacefully and surrounded by family after a courageous struggle with Lewy Body Dementia on May 18, 2023, in Lexington, KY. She was born to the late Everett R. Dyer and Lucille Walker Dyer on November 28, 1946, in Rockwood, TN. After living in Spring City, TN for several years, she moved with her family to Grahamville, KY, where she graduated from Heath High School in 1964. She attended Tennessee Technological University, where she graduated with a major in Elementary Education and a minor in English in 1968. Following graduation, she accepted teaching positions in Nashville, TN (1968), Nashville, IN (1968-1970), and Fort Knox, KY (1970-71). Becoming a mother in 1971 led her to leave the classroom, but she continued to use her educational expertise as a private tutor. She re-entered the formal work force in 1981 as a Receptionist at the University of Kentucky Art Museum (1981-82), Editorial Assistant for Rural Sociology, a scholarly journal edited at the University of Kentucky (1982-84), and Secretary-Receptionist for the Lexington Philharmonic Society (1985). In 1985, she joined the staff of the Counseling & Testing Center. She remained there, earning several promotions and transitioning from an hourly to a salaried employee, until her retirement in 2010. Because of her work at the Counseling & Testing Center and her effective liaison with other units, she became known throughout the University as a skilled communicator and a person who could be trusted to honor her commitments and to find creative solutions to difficult problems. Her work was recognized in part by her selection as a finalist for the A. Paul Nestor Creativity Award and a participant in the UKAdvance Leadership Development Institute.
Following her marriage to Jim in 1968, Linda was mother to two children, Tonya (born 1971 in Elizabethtown, KY) and Janna (born 1975 in Lexington). Both are now successful adults. Linda’s emphasis on self-discipline, her encouragement of academic excellence, and her support for activities that interested them were important for their development and their later accomplishments. Her support for her daughters has carried over into support for her grandchildren. She has followed the accomplishments of each grandchild with joy and pride, but her grandson Will has been a particular beneficiary of her support. As a teacher, Linda placed an emphasis on coordinating her classes’ activities with those of special education classes in her schools. When Will was born with Down Syndrome, Linda applied her educational practices by doing everything possible to support his health and development. This included countless hours of companionship, chauffeuring him to medical and therapy appointments, and helping to plan activities that he would enjoy.
Linda stayed busy with family and work, but she also cultivated her own interests. She enjoyed reading, travel, live music and theater performances, gardening, needlepoint, and, most especially, collecting pottery.
Linda was predeceased by her parents, two brothers (Wayne and Zayne Dyer), and two grandchildren (Anne and Ruth Burch). She is survived by James Hougland, her husband of 55 years, her daughters Tonya (Brent) Merritt (Lexington) and Janna (Tom) Burch (Indian Trail, NC), five grandchildren (Eli Merritt, Lucy Burch, Will Merritt, Owen Burch, and Ike Burch), one sister (Patricia Ballowe), three brothers (Cecil [Teresa], Norman [Marilyn], and Randy Dyer), and a brother-in-law (Bill [Lorie] Hougland). A memorial gathering will be planned for a future date. The family suggests that memorial contributions be sent to the Down Syndrome Association of Central Kentucky (www.dsack.org) or the Lewy Body Dementia Association (www.lbda.org).
To share a remembrance of Linda or to offer condolences to her family, please visit milwardfuneral.com to sign the online guest book.
Jim, so sorry to learn this. Thinking of you. Many dear memories.
Dr. Timothy Collinssays
It's been almost 25 years since I was graduated from UK's Ph.D. program in sociology. My memories of Linda still remain happy and strong. She was particularly helpful when, as a part-time professor, I directed students to the counseling office. I remember a joyful woman who cared deeply about Jim and the UK community. Grateful to have crossed her path for just a few short years, even if they were so long ago.
Linda was such an amazing person. She was intelligent, beautiful, thoughtful, and kind. She, Jim, and Tonya moved in next door to my family soon before Janna was born. I spent countless hours with her and her precious family. I was just beginning to “babysit” - I think I was about 12. I enjoyed so many conversations with Linda and she and Jim made me part of the family. She made a huge impact on me and I later earned degrees in education and spent over 30 years as an early childhood, elementary, and special education teacher. She was a lover of beauty and fine arts and so many things. I dare say few people have had more influence on me. She will be missed.
What a full and useful life. Michael and I continue to keep you both in our hearts.
Linda also had a love for jewelry which she and I shared. She was fortunate to have her sweet husband Jim who made sure he blessed her with beautiful jewelry. I was blessed to see how happy this made her. She was generous to her family and to me as a friend. I'm so happy to have known her.
To Jim and the family, I was sorry to hear of the passing of Linda. I was the last person that she hired at the UK Counseling center. Linda took great interest in helping me achieve some goals. Linda will truly be missed. My God bless you all in this dark hour of life. Best, Bernadine McGhee