Darrel H. Hoffman, age 83 of Beatrice passed away on March 17, 2023 after a brief illness at Bryan Medical Center East in Lincoln. He was born in Hadar, Nebraska on August 24, 1939 to Herbert and Helen Hoffman, attending Pierce High School and the University of Nebraska. On June 19, 1971 he was united in marriage to Sandra Renken. Darrel taught science at Beatrice Public Schools for 40 years and devoted 53 years to coaching athletes in football, track, and golf. His coaching career began with 26 years as an Assistant Football Coach and 44 years as an Assistant Track Coach, where he coached 3 Individual State Pole Vault Champions.
Those who knew Darrel understood his love for golf. Rain or shine, weather be damned, you could always find Darrel on his beloved Beatrice Country Club golf course, and he was an avid supporter of the community Junior Golf program for years. Darrel became the Head Coach for the Beatrice Women’s Golf Team in 1987. During his 27-year tenure, Beatrice became a powerhouse in Class B golf. His teams qualified for State in 26 of 27 years and won State Championship Team titles in 1990, 1992, 2005 and 2007 and runners-up in 1989, 2003, 2006 and 2008, including 4 Individual State Champions. There were 14 District titles and 12 Conference Titles. Darrel was the Nebraska Coaches Association girl’s golf coach of the year in 2007, a National High School Coaches Association Girl’s Golf Coach of the Year finalist and was inducted into the Nebraska Coaches Association Hall of Fame just in the past year, where he was able to celebrate this achievement with his family and friends at the golf course he loved so much.
While Darrel wasn’t what one would call a “verbose” man, he cared very much for his student athletes, following their journeys into adulthood, attending high school graduations, college games, and future weddings. Darrel had high expectations for his student athletes. He wanted to ensure that his student athletes reached their full potential not just as athletes but as people, and many a former athlete has reached out in adulthood to express their appreciation to Darrel for his guidance and support. On a funny note, Darrel was known to be very punctual, and his former golfers would often relive the tournaments where the school van sat alone in a dark parking lot waiting for some time before another school’s athletes would arrive. Darrel continued to support athletics into retirement, volunteering with the Girl’s Golf Team several more years after retirement.
Beyond athletics, Darrel was an avid outdoorsman throughout his life, devoting many a summer day fishing at Harlan County and area lakes, and annual June fishing trips to Winnipeg, Canada with several friends. His family fondly remembers annual camping trips to Harlan County on Memorial Weekend, fishing for bass and walleye and enjoying the outdoors. Darrel also loved the mountains, and many summers included family vacations to Colorado and in later years Alaska, where he loved spending time outdoors enjoying the mountain air and local wildlife. His daughters fondly remember more recent trips to Alaska where dad acted like a child on Christmas morning, excitedly calling out from a raised platform as a mother grizzly and two cubs walked underneath, and a rather infamous Halibut fishing trip where his girls fought seasickness while dad toughed it out and continued fishing. He was never one to miss an opportunity to fish!
Those left to mourn his passing are his wife, Sandi of Beatrice; daughters, Stacy Hoffman of Flemington, New Jersey and Katie Hoffman of Lincoln; brothers-in-law, Michael (Sue) Renken and Rodney (Sandi) Renken; numerous nieces and nephews; and a host of extended family and friends. He was preceded in death by his parents.
A memorial service will be held at 10:30 AM on Thursday, March 23, 2023 at Centenary United Methodist Church in Beatrice with Rev. Dr. Paixao Baptista officiating. A visitation will be held at the Griffiths-Hovendick Chapel in Beatrice on Wednesday from 10:00 AM to 8:00 PM with the family greeting relatives and friends from 6:00 PM to 7:30 PM. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions are asked to be made to the Beatrice Educational Foundation and Beatrice Humane Society with the funeral home in charge. Additional details about Darrel's service, including any available live streams may be found at www.ghchapel.com.