MOUNT VERNON — The Lord granted Fred C. “Huffy” Hoffman’s wish to be called home and reunited with his wife and love of his life, Avanele (McKenzie) Hoffman, on April 30, 2013.
Fred was born in 1912 to John and Emma (Wagner) Hoffman. He grew up in Utica and was inducted into the Army in March 1942 and served until 1945.
While serving as a construction foreman in the 141 1st Infantry regiment of the famed 36th Combat Division — The Texas Division. He advanced to the rank of Staff Sergeant, where he was involved in the invasion of Sicily and the Allied surge onto the Italian mainland. In January 1944, the Texas Division was ordered to cross the frigid Radido River in support of the amphibious assault on Anzio. It was one the war’s most ill-conceived actions with little chance of success. In all, 1,671 Americans perished with another 1,000 wounded.
During his employment with the Army, he was awarded the Good Conduct Medal, American Campaign Medal, European African Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with one Bronze Star and the WWII Victory Medal.
After returning home from Europe, he and his beloved wife, Avanele, enjoyed gardening together and loved dancing to the songs of the Big Band Era.
Fred also resumed his employment with the Ohio Fuel Gas Co. as a construction supervisor until his retirement.
He is survived by his niece, Sallie (Fred) Hall; nephews, Bud (Mary Jane) McKenzie and Paul (Nancy) Colopy.
Fred was preceded in death by two sisters, Luella Mahaffey, Marvene Wilson; and two brothers, Trafford Hoffman and Raymond Flowers.
Graveside funeral services will be held Friday at 11 a.m. in Mound View Cemetery. Military graveside honors will be conducted by the Knox County Joint Veterans Council. The Dilley-Lasater Funeral Home is handling the funeral services for the Hoffman family.
Memorial contributions may be made in Fred’s name to The Wounded Warrior Project, P.O. Box 758517, Topeka, KS 66675.
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