Ronald W. Hoffman, 76 years old, passed away 08-12-2020 following a 4-year battle with dementia with Lewy-Bodies.
Ron was raised on the family fruit ranch, Hoffman Orchards in Yakima, established in 1912. He attended Willow Lawn Elementary school before transferring to Mountainview Elementary school when it was built. He attended West Valley High School and graduated from WSU. He worked in Tacoma for a few years before joining the Navy in 1969. He served 9 months in Vietnam. One night a bullet hit the cot he would have been sleeping in if he hadn’t been out on watch at the time. He began working in Wapato for the State of Washington Social and Health Services, transferring to Yakima where he retired.
He established a home on a section of the old homestead of 1912. At first, he lived in a wooden handmade box on the back of his pickup, with no water or electricity. He carried on the tradition of growing fruit trees. He included growing grapes and became quite the wine maker. He, his dad Winston and Uncle Gene would stomp the grapes with their bare feet which only added to the unique flavor of the wine. Many a happy occasion was celebrated with a bottle of his fine wine.
After his retirement he started ‘living the dream.’ He was the ultimate outdoor adventurer and master of downhill cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, backpacking, rock and ice climbing and mountain biking. He shared many outings with friends and his brother winter mountaineering at the top of his beloved mountains. His ST-4 Snow Cat provided access to many remote areas he and his friends explored.
He belonged to the Yakima Cascadians, the Seattle Mountaineers and the Yakima Astronomy Club. He took numerous pictures of the planets and stars that were (in our dad’s words) real ‘wall-bangers.’
His family has a cabin at Rimrock Lake that was built by the Hoffman and Griesinger families in 1947. He was able to spend 6 months a year at the cabin with his mom and dad and 6 months a year with them at their Casa Grande, Arizona home. It was the best of both worlds.
While at the cabin they were able to hike the entire area. They enjoyed all of the wildflowers and could name most of them, along with most of the birds. Their bird feeder attracted a variety of birds as they migrated to and from Washington. They even enjoyed a pair of raccoons raise their young, bringing the babies every night on their porch for the dog food they left out.
As soon as there was frost on the pumpkin the 3 of them would head for sunny Arizona. There they (and their dog Pippi) explored towns, festivals, rivers, valleys and mountains in his dad’s dune buggy and trials motorcycle.
Preceding him in death were his parents, Winton and Norma Hoffman, his uncle Eugene (Helen Ruth) Hoffman and uncle Charles (Marge) Hoffman.
He is survived by his brother Ken (Barb) Hoffman, niece Kim (Dan) and girls Ella and Anna Weber, nephew Eric (Mandy) and boys Dylan and Dawson Hoffman. There are numerous cousins, ‘the Seattle relatives,’ who spent many summers creating memories when they would visit ‘the ranch’ with their parents. Cousins Anita (Dale) Huysman and Bruce Hoffman (Jeanette Shinpaugh) were also raised on part of the homestead property, and were able to participate in many family gatherings.
Due to the Covid 19 restrictions there will be a celebration of his life at a later time.
Brookside Funeral Home is caring for the family.
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