Onalee Jo Hoffman
Onalee Jo Lytle Hoffman, 81, of Belle Fourche, SD, passed peacefully at her home, surrounded by her loving family and friends on Feb. 3, 2011.
She was born June 15, 1929 at Martin, SD to Joe and Vera (Gee) Lytle. She lived on Pass Creek near Long Valley, SD with her parents, three sisters: Mary Ann, Lucile and Lyla; one older brother Jack Smith; two younger brothers Joe and Larry. In March of 1936 the family moved to a farm on the Cheyenne River east of Wasta, SD where they lived for the next ten years.
Onalee started the first grade at Pass Creek, finishing at the Hinman School in the spring of 1936. The balance of grade school and two years of high school were completed at Wasta Independent School. Onalee graduated from Wall Independent High School in 1947.
She worked at various places the next two years, including helping her brother-in-law Gerald Wilson on the Reatz place near Elm Springs, SD.
On Aug. 13, 1949 she married Walter G. Hoffman at Rapid City, SD. They raised five children: Rodney, Christi, J. Ben, Dawn and Kathryn. Onalee took great care and pleasure in opening her home to a host of children and neighbors sharing her great country cooking and hospitality.
Over the years they lived on the Cummings Ranch, the Pederson place, the old Pot Hook Ranch, the Al Trask Ranch and Corn Creek near Allen, SD. They moved to the home place of Ben Hoffman at Creighton, SD in 1958 where they lived until the fall of 1979. Walt and Onalee then moved to Nisland, SD where they lived until 1983. Onalee had a home in Wall, SD where she spent many years employed at the Wall Drug Store. In 1990 Walt and Onalee moved to Belle Fourche, SD to be near their children and grandchildren.
Onalee enjoyed gardening and had an ardent love for flowers. She shared her beautiful roses with many. She had a passion for writing poetry and family history. She leaves to her credit published poetry books and historic novels; and family history books that will leave a historic legacy for generations to come.
Onalee was a woman of God praying fervently for her family and friends in obedience to God. She was a faithful servant to her community, active in her church, and enjoyed mentoring her grandchildren.
Onalee was preceded in death by her husband of 50 years, Walt Hoffman, her parents Joe and Vera Lytle, brother Jack Smith, sisters Mary Ann Wilson and Lyla Trask, son-in-law Casey Lange.
Grateful to have shared her life include her children Rod Hoffman, Belle Fourche; daughter-in-law Rhonda Hoffman, Van, TX; Chris and Cliff Crago, Belle Fourche; J.B. Hoffman, Belle Fourche; Dawn and Wilbur Newland, Belle Fourche; Kathy and Ted Thompson, Whitewood; a sister Lu Lytle, Fairview, OR; two brothers Joe and Nonie Lytle, Rapid City; Larry Lytle and Freddie Eason, Rapid City; sister-in-law Norma Lytle, Rapid City; 24 grandchildren, 30 great grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews.
A “Celebration of Life” led by her children was held Monday, Feb. 7, 2011 at 2 p.m. at the Belle Fourche Community Hall.
Onalee requested that her ashes be cast to the wind over her beloved childhood home on the Cheyenne River breaks. In lieu of graveside services a memorial service will be held on her birthday, June 15, 2011 at Wasta, SD.
Memorials are established to Hospice of the Northern Black Hills and South Dakota Honor Flight. An online guest book is available at http://www.klinefuneralchapel.com.
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