Wit and Wisdom Blog for Atria Senior Living

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Paul and Jean

Veteran Paul Hoffman


Posted on December 18, 2013 by Katy Miller


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My mother, Jean Hoffman, lives at Atria at St. Joseph’s in Jupiter, Florida. She has been in that community for almost four years and is now 91 years old. She loves being there, but misses my father who passed away four years ago.

My parents were married for 66 years before he died at 88. They actually met in 6th grade, and I don’t believe my father ever dated or loved another woman. Together they had four children, the first being born while my dad was fighting in Word War II.  After the war, my dad got out of the service for a year or so, but reenlisted and became a Veteran “lifer.”

Over the years, the six of us lived in more than 20 places, including Okinawa, El Salvador, Panama and numerous cities in the United States.  My dad also went overseas alone to the Korean conflict, served a second duty in Korea and, finally, Vietnam just before he retired.

 

Hoffman Family

I always admired the way my mother took care of the four of us while my father was gone. It had to be difficult both when we were young and needed constant monitoring, and as we grew into teenagers. But the story that I admire the most was after the Korean conflict. My mother had stayed in Cincinnati, Ohio, while my father was gone. When the conflict was over, he was sent to Okinawa and we were all to travel to meet him there. My mother took us, ages one, three, seven and nine, on the train to Seattle, Washington (a several-day trip), then for a week on a ship to Yokohama and, eventually, Okinawa.  I can’t imagine traveling alone with four young children for two weeks! She recalls the military guys on the ship were very helpful.

 

Hoffman Vacation

My father retired after 30 years in the Army. He and my mother had another wonderful 30 years of boating, traveling and enjoying each other.  Thanks to those of you who keep her safe and happy in her years without Dad!

Jean Hoffman

— Patti Anderson (Daughter)


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