Harold Chester Hoffine, 91, went home from this earth on Dec. 17, 2021.  Visitation will be held at 11:00 am Sat., Jan. 15, 2022 at Bruce Funeral Home, 106 S. Center, Gardner, KS (913) 856-7111.  Celebration of Life follows at 12:30 pm.  Burial with honors follows at Gardner Cemetery.  In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Harold’s name to the Clyde Cosper Texas State Veteran’s Home, 1300 Seven Oaks Road, Bonham, TX  75418.  Condolences may be left at www.brucefuneralhome.com


Harold Chester Hoffine was born June 27, 1930 in Gardner, KS to Chester and Elma (Hermon) Hoffine.  Harold grew up during the depression and when men had gone to war, he was working a full day at 13 years old for a $2.00 daily wage to help his family.  He was always hard working throughout his life.  Harold grew up in Gardner and graduated from Gardner High School in 1948.  He has two sisters, Carolyn Rankin of Olathe, KS and Marilyn Ford of Lee’s Summit, MO.  He loved sports and had a football scholarship but was unable to complete, due to farm and family responsibilities.


In 1951, he met the love of his life, Mary Hayden and they were married on June 30, 1951.  He lost Mary on July 28, 2014 after 63 years of marriage.  Harold was drafted shortly after their marriage into the US Army Rangers during The Korean Conflict. Harold and Mary were stationed in Alaska for 4 years.  Harold had four daughters, Sherry Ravenscroft, Bonham, TX; Terry Chrisco, Conroe, TX; Cindy Herzog, Trenton, TX and Wendy Huddleston, Conroe, TX.


Harold had many interests and hobbies in his life. He was an avid hunter, collected firearms and loved fishing – even though he would regretfully say that Mary was better at the fishing!  He raised Brittney Spaniel hunting dogs.  He grew up driving a team of horses at the age of 6, as well as breaking and the love of riding horses throughout his life.  He learned to fly small single engine airplanes, owned a plane and rebuilt it at one time.  Harold loved sports – football, baseball and golf.  From the time he finished high school through during the years his daughters were growing up, Harold played on several local area men’s fast pitch AAA softball teams.  He pitched fast pitch ball until he was 55 years old.  He loved playing golf, especially with his sons-in-laws – they were all so competitive.  He was an avid Kansas City Royals and Chief’s fan.  At one time, Harold was part owner in a jalopy that he and a partner sponsored for races.  Harold also loved motorcycles and had one for many years that he and Mary would take trips on.


Harold’s most enjoyable passion was playing his banjo. He played a Maple-leaf banjo, a handmade banjo-dobro and had several guitars throughout his life, one that was electric, that he made. He was in a band with some of his best friends, a group called “Something Special” that had a lead guitar, banjo, a fiddle…sometimes an extra guitar and at least one lead singer, sometimes two. They played at local VFW halls, nursing homes, dances at local towns and for “Old Time Pickers and Fiddlers“ competitions.  He also loved playing music with his cousin, Greg Hermon, who had the same passion for music.