Hazel Evelyn (Craddock) Josey, 87, died Friday, Jan. 4, 2008, after a brief illness.

She was born in Des Moines, Iowa, on Nov. 8, 1920, the younger of two daughters of Naomis and Grace (Ward) Craddock. She attended Eastside High School in Des Moines, where she was a member of the National Honor Society and graduated in 1937. She earned a bachelor of arts in sociology at Iowa University in 1943, where she was a member of the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority.

Shortly after graduation, Mrs. Josey enlisted in the Womenís Army Corps. Commissioned as a second lieutenant at Fort Oglethorpe, Ga. in December of 1943, she served in assignments stateside and in France, rising to the rank of first lieutenant before her separation from the Army in 1946.

Upon completion of her military service, Mrs. Josey attended graduate school at the University of Southern California, where she met and married William T. Josey Sr. in 1950. They moved to Medford in 1951, where they raised their children.

Mrs. Josey was later employed at Prudential Insurance Company as a manager in the personnel office. She retired from Prudential in 1984 when the insurance company closed its Boston office. She then moved to Bradford with her husband, and both returned to work at the Internal Revenue Service in Andover. Mrs. Josey retired from the IRS after her husbandís death in 1996.

The following year, she began volunteer work in the records section at the Merrimack Valley Hospital (formerly Hale Hospital) in Haverhill. She continued volunteering twice a week until 2006, when she moved to Youville Place Assisted Living in Lexington.

An avid reader, music lover and word game enthusiast, she is survived by a son, William T. Josey Jr. of Manchester, N.H.; a daughter, Claudia G. Knight, of Lexington; six grandchildren; and two great-grandsons.

She was also the sister of the late Enola (Craddock) Johnson. She is remembered with fondness by extended family, co-workers and friends.

Visiting hours will be from 4 to 8 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 10, at Gaffey Funeral Home, 43 High St., Medford. A funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10 a.m. Friday, Jan. 11, at St. Raphaelís Church, 512 High St., Medford.