Gerald “Jerry” Hoffman passed into eternal life on September 4, 2023.
He was born July 5, 1930 in Glasgow, Montana to Austin Hoffman and Solveig “Mildred” Hagen. He attended grade schools in Lewistown, Billings, and Glasgow, and graduated from Glasgow High School in 1948. After high school, he became a journeyman lineman while working for his father, Hoffman Construction, who contracted with Montana Power and strung many power lines across the state.
In 1952-1954, he went to Korea and served in the Army Signal Corp. During which time he helped string the wire into P’anmunjom for the peace talks. After discharge, he was in the Army Reserve until 1960. When he returned from Korea, he attended college on the GI bill and earned his Associate’s from Northern Montana College and a Bachelor’s in Industrial Arts at Montana State College (Bozeman) in 1957. While in Bozeman he met Gladys Myers of Columbus on a blind date. They were married in March 1959.
They moved to the family wheat farm southeast of Opheim where they raised four children: Laurie, Julie, Tom, and Steve. They made many wonderful lifelong friends there. Dad was active as a scout leader, served in the Masonic Lodge, Elks, Community Club, and served nine years on the Opheim school board.
Jerry had a life-long love of reading, including poetry. His recitation of Robert Service’s “The Cremation of Sam McGee” was especially good. He also enjoyed the theater, and there are many fond family memories of boating all day on Ft. Peck Lake and attending every season of Ft. Peck Summer Theater. He was also very mechanical, could fix just about anything, and was a skilled woodworker. He always said Julie was his best carpenter.
In 1993, after 35 years of farming, he and Gladys retired and moved to Billings. He was involved in VFW Post #6774, the Masonic Lodge, and Shriners, where he participated in the shoe program for kids every year. He and Gladys also enjoyed travels to Russia, Costa Rica, Mexico, Alaska, Hawaii, and Texas.
Jerry is preceded in death by his wife of 58 years Gladys, beloved granddaughters Kayla Hass and Michaela Hoffman, and brother, Dale Hoffman.
He is survived by his brother Larry of Butte; children: Laurie of Billings, Julie (Carl) Kurokawa of Billings, Tom (Darla) of Glasgow, and Steve (Kim) of Billings; six grandchildren: Steven (Summer) Kurokawa of Billings, Carlie (Seth) Carlson of Billings, Alyssa (Sam) Worcester of Billings, Kerry Hoffman (Bend, Oregon), Mya Hoffman of Billings and Reif Hass of Billings; seven great-grandchildren: Reygan, Sterling and Kenji Kurokawa, Mara Bergeron, Karson Popoff, Jack and Elliot Carlson.
Jerry loved his family, always desiring for us to have more than he did. He also enjoyed serving his community wherever he was. There will be a celebration of life on Saturday, October 7, at the VFW on Anchor Avenue, in Billings at 11:00 a.m.
Jerry and Gladys will be laid to rest in Glasgow Highland Cemetery with Military Honors on Saturday, October 14, 2023 at 1:00 p.m.