Richard “Dick” Hoos, age 94, died November 22 at home, after a two-week battle with Covid-19. He wished to remain and die at home, so four of his daughters cared for him and his wife Eileen around the clock, helping him go with love and dignity, and the comfort of being surrounded by family.
He was born January 12, 1926 in Muskegon, Michigan to Carl E. Hoos and Cecilia Magdalene Grilliot Hoos, and grew up with two brothers Bob Hoos and Phil Hoos, and two sisters Rita Horan and Maxine Kolean. After high school, he enlisted in the US Army at age 18 serving in France and Germany, lucky enough to see the war end while overseas. He returned from war to take advantage of the GI Bill and graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Communications from Michigan State University. With further training at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, he dove into a lifelong teaching career. Dick met Eileen Hoffman in Montague and married her in 1949, the best move of his life. They settled in Montague, enjoying their own parents nearby, and made many lasting friendships as they raised ten children and nurtured a marriage that lasted these 71 years. In his 32 years as an English teacher at Montague High School, he was deeply involved with student life as he coached, was the announcer at sporting events, advised various student groups and enjoyed his own children’s involvement at school, especially in sports. He stayed in touch with former students and over the years became their friends. Dick enjoyed an active life, golfing with friends and grandchildren after his retirement from teaching, playing pond hockey til he hung up his skates at 80, throwing a ball with his children or grandchildren, dancing with his wife and grandkids at every wedding, hiking in national parks all over the US, riding his bike, even up the town hill, swimming in Lake Michigan and generally appreciating the outdoors, wherever he was.
He was active for many years with the Old Newsies Charity, The Knights of Columbus, served as a Montague City Councilman and more recently as a Board member of the Whitelake Senior Center. In 2015, he enjoyed special recognition with his brother Phil both WWII vets, with an Honor Flight to Washington DC. He had a wonderful speaking voice and was a reader and commentator at St. James Catholic church in Montague, volunteered at local nursing homes where he recited or read poetry, and was called upon many times to speak at the weddings of his children and grandchildren. In the saddest of times, Dick struggled through the death of his two sons, Jim and John when they were only in their 30s. They have been in his thoughts every day, but he still found joy and happiness alongside his wife through many family gatherings with his daughters and their families: Kathy and Mike Freeman of Milwaukee, Nancy Hoos and John Kough of Bethesda, Md, Janet and Gary Graham, of Montague after many years in Marquette, Mi, Suzanne and John Pearce of Saginaw, Martha Hoos of Muskegon, Mary and Craig Hefner of Northfield, Ma, Laura Knop, of Montague after many years in Lake Bluff, IL, and Dana Hoos of Seattle. “Gramps” was loved by his 15 grandchildren: Kristen and Laura, Andy and Dylan, Sarah, Amy and Tim, Megan and Eric, Evan, Ben and Nora, Carson, Caroline and Connor, and took special joy in his 12 great grandchildren.
A memorial mass and outdoor celebration of life will both take place when covid is behind us.
Please visit www.clockfuneralhome.com to leave a memory or sign the online guestbook. The family appreciates the expertise, compassion and guidance of Harbor Hospice and asks that in lieu of flowers donations be made to this invaluable resource in these uncertain times. Harbor Hospice, 1050 W. Western Ave. #400, Muskegon, MI 49441. We ask you all as friends, acquaintances and Michiganders, #maskupmichigan.
The fair breeze blew, the white foam flew, the furrow followed free…The Rime of the Ancient Mariner