Elmer J. (Slug) Hofer — one of a set of twins — was born March 20, 1927, to the Rev. Jacob B. Hofer and Barbara (Wipf) Hofer, on his grandparents’ farm near Freeman, S.D. He passed away at the age of 93, on Nov. 9, 2020, at Freeman Regional Health Services from complications of COVID 19. He lived in the Freeman area and attended country school and Freeman Public.
Slug earned his nickname in the fifth grade, when he got in a fight at a community picnic. He had no recollection of who he fought with. In 1940 his family moved to Dolton, S.D. and he finished his education there. Elmer served in the U.S. Army, in WWII, in the occupation of Korea from July 1945 to January 1947.
Elmer worked at a young age at Anderson’s General Store and later in the garage. He drove egg truck for Duerksen Produce and Waldbaum Produce for 16 years. He finished his career driving a milk truck for AMPI for 19 years. The kids and grandkids all remember when they got to ride along with him, and how much fun he would make it for them. He also loved to tinker in the garage and fix things.
He married Evelyn Sturzenbecher on Sept. 5, 1959, at Bethesda Lutheran Church in Marion, S.D. They lived all of their 61 married years in Bridgewater, S.D. They had four children: Kathy, Kay, Penny and Perry, 12 grandchildren, and 13 great-grandchildren.
On May 6, 2012, Elmer received Jesus Christ as his savior, was baptized by Pastor Troy Weiland, and became a member of the Zion Mennonite Church in Bridgewater.
He was preceded in death by his parents, grandson Kenny Hofer, twin brother Ervin, his brother Jake, and several brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law.
Those remaining to cherish his memory are his wife of 61 years, Evelyn; and his children: Kathy (Kevin) Henrichs, Kay (Mike) Long, Penny (Steve) Smidt and Perry (Tammy) Hofer.
Grandchildren/great grandchildren are: Kurt (Sarah) Henrichs, Luke and Ben; Kris Salis, Ricky and Kahlen; Kraig (Amanda) Henrichs, Blake and Layney; Kory (Courtney) Henrichs; Molly (Jon) Vilhauer; Jake (Sara) Long; Josh (Tammy) Hofer, Grace, Samantha and Dylan; Austin (Tera) Smidt; Scott (Krystal) Hofer, Mason, Landon and Kylie; Zack Hofer; Troy (Jordyn) Hofer, and Cutler. Brothers/Sisters: Grace Duerksen, Johnny (Edna) Hofer, Susie Lokken, Ruben (Marlene) Hofer, Ruth Boehm, Ronnie (Kathy) Hofer, and brother-in-law: Roy Sturzenbecher.
A private family service is planned.