Cover photo for Kay Matkins Dixon's Obituary
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1952 Kay 2022

Kay Matkins Dixon

July 10, 1952 — July 5, 2022

Kay Matkins Dixon died peacefully on July 5, 2022, five days before her seventieth birthday.

Kay was born in Sterlington on July 10, 1952, the youngest of five children. Her parents and older siblings doted on her, and by all accounts, she was a charming and precocious child.

She played basketball for Sterlington High School and spoke at her graduation. Later, she was runner-up for Miss Ouachita Parish, where her talent was piano.

She attended NLU (now ULM) on a piano scholarship, where she majored in English education and was a member of Phi Mu sorority. She met and fell in love with Joe H. Dixon, Jr. (J.J.), but she promised her father that she would graduate before she got married. True to her word, she graduated on May 12, 1973, and married J.J. two weeks later, on May 26, 1973.

They briefly lived in Baton Rouge and then Franklin, Louisiana, but returned to Monroe to make their permanent home in 1976.

Kay taught junior high and high school for over thirty years, first at Neville High School and then at Grace Episcopal School, where her love of books and literature was second only to her love for her many students.

Kay loved Monroe and was a vibrant member of this community. She enjoyed participating in the Daughters of the American Revolution and the Junior Garden Club. She had a lifelong passion for books and reading and was a proud member of “The Book Club,” the city’s original reading group at over one hundred years old. Her first observation after anyone’s success was “I bet their mother read to them.”

She was also a devoted member of the Junior League of Monroe and was most proud of her work on the cookbook committee that produced Celebrations on the Bayou. A promotion for the cookbook allowed her “Monroe famous” chocolate cake briefly to become nationally famous when Willard Scott talked about enjoying a piece on the Today Show. Despite her moments of culinary success, it was her love of people that kept her actively involved in these organizations.

Kay was a consummate hostess, loving nothing better than to give a party at her beautiful home, whether an elegant cocktail affair or fajitas and volleyball in the backyard.

Born a Baptist, Kay became an Episcopalian when she married JJ, and was an active member of Grace Episcopal Church for fifty years. She had a beautiful voice, and her favorite part of every service was singing along with the organ – all the verses.

Although she suffered from failing health in her final years, Kay showed overwhelming love for her family and friends until the end of her life. She adored her ten grandchildren, and nothing made her smile quite like hearing their voices or seeing pictures of them.

A special thanks to Dr. Chuck Morgan, the staff at the Guest House of West Monroe, and Elara Hospice for their care.

Kay is survived by her loving husband of 49 years, J.J.; her beloved five children, Katherine Sandifer (Michael); Caroline Carpenter (Lee); Clair Horner (Ben); Joe Dixon, III (Ali); Beth Welch (Jordan); brothers Snow Matkins (Hildred), and Bill Matkins (Judy); sister, Sara Gilliland; brother-in-law, Tommy Dixon; sister-in-law, Adele Buntin (David); and her precious grandchildren, who were the light of her life: Dixon and William Sandifer, Witt and Thomas Carpenter, Emma Adele, Lillie, and Charlotte Horner, Henry and Thomas Dixon, and Finn Welch; as well as many cherished cousins, nieces, nephews, and friends.

Kay was preceded in death by her mother and father, Mabel and Cleo Matkins; her mother-in-law and father-in-law, Teetie and Joe H. Dixon; her brother, Clark Matkins; and brother-in-law, Bob Gilliland.

Honoring Kay as pallbearers are Kent Breard, Lee Carpenter, Max Cox, Ben Horner, Arthur Liles, Bart Liles, Michael Sandifer, Burton Wade, and Jordan Welch,

Honorary pallbearers include Graham Abell, Lou Gavioli, Hill Hinkle, and her seven grandsons.

Visitation will be Friday, July 8, 2022, at 10:30 AM in Kilbourne Hall, at Grace Episcopal Church in Monroe, Louisiana, followed immediately by the funeral at 12 noon in the sanctuary. Interment will be at Riverview Cemetery in Monroe, Louisiana.

Memorials in honor of Kay may be made to Grace Episcopal Church, Neville Alumni and Friends Association, the Baton Rouge Gallery, or the charity of your choice. Services are under the direction and care of Mulhearn Funeral Home in Monroe.

We will love you forever and will honor your memory by sharing the happiness you created for us with our families and communities.
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Kay Matkins Dixon, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Friday, July 8, 2022

10:30am - 12:00 pm (Central time)

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Funeral Service

Friday, July 8, 2022

Starts at 12:00 pm (Central time)

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