John D. (Joe) Hoffmann passed away on 7/3/17. Joe was born on December 6, 1943 in Glendale, CA, the only child of William Eugene Hoffmann and Mary Lenore Potts Hoffmann.
Raised in Pasadena, CA until age 14, Joe’s life was affected by interests in sports and railroads. In Pasadena, he participated in little league baseball for four years, playing first base for the Elks Club team in the Pasadena Central Little League. With the support of both his mother and father, he also developed strong interests in railroad trains of the Santa Fe and the Southern Pacific railroads.
In 1958, Joe relocated with his parents to Los Altos as a result of his father’s transfer within Lockheed Corporation to Sunnyvale, CA. After graduating from Fremont High School in Sunnyvale in 1961, Joe matriculated to the University of Oregon where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Journalism in 1965. After a short stint as a newspaper reporter and photographer for the Sunnyvale Daily Standard, he, too, undertook employment at Lockheed in Sunnyvale. He joined the technical publications organization that produced technical manuals and reports, presentations and proposals in support of the U. S. Navy’s Polaris, Poseidon, and Trident missile programs. He also supported many company technical proposal efforts, including those for NASA’s space shuttle orbiter, the subsequent heat shield tile program, and the Air Force/Navy cruise missile program. The opportunities to support leading edge technology programs were always an exciting part of Joe’s Lockheed career.
In 1974, Joe was made a supervisor in the publications departments, directing the work of technical writers and editors, technical illustrators, graphic and commercial artists, and text processing operators, the latter during the early development of computer-based business systems. For the next 19 years, until the beginning of the downsizing of Lockheed and the eventual merger of Lockheed with Martin Marietta to form Lockheed Martin in 1995, he fulfilled a responsibility he dearly enjoyed because of its involvement with the development and growth of personnel.
In his final five years at Lockheed Martin before his retirement in January 2004, Joe was on the staffs of several directors of the Trident missile program.
Joe moved to Santa Clara in 1973, where he resided for the next 44 years.
Beginning in 1993, Joe joined the South Bay Historical Railroad Society at the historic Santa Clara Depot. This allowed him to rekindle is lifelong interest in trains and in preservation and restoration of historic buildings and museum artifacts. He was able to advance his skills in the development of model trains that always directly reflected the prototype. After 1994, he was the editor and publisher of the Santa Clara Block, the quarterly newsletter of the society. He was able to use the business skills developed in his work career to support the SBHRS, wherein from 1995 until 2016, Joe was a member of the board of directors of the SBHRS, where he served as treasurer for more than 12 years.
Joe was predeceased in 2014 by his daughter, Jennifer Lynn Hoffmann Banks, the only child of his eight-year marriage to Jeannette K. Covert.
A Celebration Of Life will be held at the SBHRS, 1005 Railroad Ave, Santa Clara, on Sun., 7/30 at 1 PM.