James B. “Jay” Hoffman, age 73, of Munising, went to be with his Lord on Tuesday, July 9, 2019 at UP Health Systems – Marquette, following a brief illness. He was born on June 13, 1946 to the late Rudolph and Brigitta (Partanan) Hoffman. Jay graduated from Wm. G. Mather in 1964. On June 9, 1964, he joined the United States Navy. Jay was awarded National Defense Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal, and Vietnam Service Medal. He was honorably discharged as a Machinist Mate 2nd Class in March of 1970 following his time aboard USS Chevalier (DD-805). After returning home from the Navy Jay was reacquainted to his classmate Sharon Nettleton, and on June 22, 1972 they were married. Jay entered the United States Coast Guard in September 1972. He was stationed in Portland, Maine, and served aboard the USCGC Duane (WHEC 33). Jay was honorably discharged in March of 1975 as a Machinery Technician 2nd Class. Jay and Sharon moved back to Munising and together they raised their two children. Nearly twenty years ago, he created and began operating Hoffman Haus Knives. Jay went from amateur knife maker to knife artist, creating many beautiful pieces and one-of-a-kind knives. He and Sharon would travel on their “mini-vacations” to knife and gun shows to sell his knives, going as far as Atlanta, Georgia. Jay enjoyed hunting and fishing and was an avid competitive shooter of long-range rifles and a member of the Sportsman Club. He enjoyed reading all types of books: non-fiction, fiction, science fiction, history, if it had pages, he would give it a shot. Jay also wrote and published two Bible study books. Jay loved spending time at his family’s cabin, it was one of the first homes built in Shelter Bay.
He is survived by his wife of forty-seven years – Sharon Hoffman of Munising, children – Bryann (Gary) Walden of Munising and Senior Chief Justin (Chie) Hoffman of US Navy, Japan; grandchildren – Dalton, Garrett, and Cooper Walden and Lilly Rose Hoffman; and mother-in-law – June Nettleton. He was preceded in death by his parents - Rudolph and Brigitta and father-in-law - Donald A. Nettleton.
Graveside services will be held on Thursday, July 18, 2019 at Maple Grove Cemetery at 1:00 p.m. where the American Legion and Vietnam Veteran Honor Guard will conduct military honors. A fellowship gathering will follow at the American Legion in Munising from 2:00 until 4:00 p.m. Jay’s obituary and online guestbook may be viewed and signed at bowermanfuneralhome.net