Mary Hoffmann Hunt

Profile Updated: April 7, 2013
Residing In: Calumet, MI USA
Spouse/Partner: Divorced
Occupation: Writer/publisher
Children: Sam, born 1979. Self-employed translator in Hamburg, Germany: German, Czech, Slovak. Muscian with small More…Hamburg group.
Military Service: U.S. Army (Don). I taught at Wurzburg AHS!  
Yes! Attending Reunion

April, 2013. I have had a great time talking to JIM TICE, who I didn't know at Webster. Called him because he lives in Jackson Michigan, near the places Don and I lived in in southern Michigan (Ann Arbor, Waterloo, and Albion). My son Sam got launched in Jackson, thanks to its youth orchestra and community college (he went there instead of high school after 10th grade). Greagt teachers in English, world music, criminal justice, and ancient history.

Jim and I share many interests (German-American culture, St. Louis stuff, background in ATT ...Don's dad's promotion to Michigan Bell is why we came to Michigan) and military experience, our experiences in Michigan. Jim was a football player and much mellower and better-balanced than I, who was bookish and ever the social critic. So he and I can compare and contrast on many things. Because of his weird affliction, he has time to talk about history, high school culture, etc.

To BRIAN PHEGLEY: Jim says Webster DID play Crystal City with future SENATOR BILL BRADLEY, though it was not in our conference. that match-up often filled out the schedule. I clearly remember MARTY BELMORE telling me all about how impressive Bill Bradley was at Boys' State. We were seatmates in ancient history. I can't believe that so many of our class leaders are gone! JIIM O'BRIEN.... I'd been in class with him from 5th grade, when I arrived in Webster, through 9th grade. (Such a rude culture shock from my comfy home at Glenridge School in Clayton!) Thank goodness for Clark School principal KING BARNETT, father of our own MARY BETH BARNETT/aka RAE STITH. King was in his element looking out for nerdy misfits like me. My mother dissed him as a Dr. Spock liberal, soft on discipline! JONATHAN FRANZEN's piece on KING mediating a spelling bee dispute that almost came to blows was priceless! I adore being able to read Jonathan's super-perceptive, meticulously checked takes on Webster, and on engineer-executive corporate types like our dads, who seldom get any respect in American literature.)

Jim Tice went to Mary Queen of Peace K-8, I went to Sunday school only and hated it. Now after 4 decades, I am quite surprised to be back to being a Catholic...some would say, in the liberal wing, certainly tilted to to social action side, and somewhat pro-choice, but pro-life in the big sense of the word. (I'm in the middle on a lot of things, and I can assure you, the middle is a lonely place to be.) In shelviing my books, I noticed that Sister Helen Prejean, the nun who did so much to rally support against the death penalty, signed my copy of "Dead Man Walking" with "Choose life!" That also means, a living wage, supporting education for other people's children, takling care of the environment and each other for 7 generations forward and back, as American Indians in our parts say, no death penalty, and...oh, yes....just war theory.

That's how my former congressman BART STUPAK was pro-life. In two election cycles as a Houghton County Democrat here in Michigan's Upper Peninsula, I worked my butt off for Bart, and he worked his butt off for his constituents, driving himself all over his huge district: the whole Upper Peninsula, and much of the Lower Peninsula down almost to Midland, Bay City, and Saginaw.

PETE BOHLING's profile was SO funny! A brilliant proseP. stylist, CHRISTY WILLIAMS and I agree. Wish he lived closer so I could meet him! It was great sharing notes with Christy in beautiful Slippery Rock PA.

In October I went to visit STAN THE MAN INC. and chatted with his former babysitter and right-hand woman Pat Anthony. To me, STAN MUSIAL was like the New Testament God.... a background kind of figure, always there. Learning that Stan's dementia and loss of his wife had gotten him depressed, I vowed to send him some polka music from his childhood in Donora, pre-Frankiie Yankovic polka music. I sent it from the fabulous Polish Art Center in Hamtramck, Michigan...and learned 4 days later that he had died.

Thank you, Cardinals and HARRY CARAY, for making my life richer, and thank you, SHELLEY McCRUM, for taking me to my first Cardinal game. Soon I was going to the original Busch Stadium with friends and my little brother, on my babysitting money. North Grand, and a poor part of town come alive on game day.... just like the old Tiger Stadium. I was so lucky to have been a baseball fan back in the day when a teenage girl could sit in the bleachers behind LOU BROCK on her babysitting money.

Finally, I was late to our reunion because of poor time management in in interviewing the fantastic 87-year-old founder of the GREYHOUND BUS MUSEUM in Hibbing, Minnesota (Dylan's home town) on the still-active Mesabi Iron Range. Before Christmas Gene had a massive stroke and can't talk. So I feel rewarded in having taken the time to get his story... one of the most moving of the many, many biographical features I have written over they years. I had spent many, many hours on Greyhounds getting to college.... 24 hours to NYC, then 6 hours through Hartford and Springfield to Smith in Northampton. (Smith. I survived. A big mistake. Not my cup of tea, socially. That's all I can say.)

Haven't been able to pursue WAR BABIES. Still think it's a very important part of our lives.


Started Ann Arbor Observer monthly with ex-husband Don in 1976. Sold it in 1986. Moved to college/foundry town of Albion MI. Then wrote and published travel guides to Detroit and southeast Michigan; west Michigan; highlights of Michigan; and Michigan's Upper Peninsula between lakes Superior and Michigan. Loves history: local, regional, Midwestern, immigration, American, Central European, and American religions. Now live in U.P. copper mining hub of Calumet. Lived in Germany as army wife, student teacher of military brats. Used to be ardent historic preservationist.

School Story:

I will be asking you all about:

Why are we here, anyway? Where were our parents in 1943 (we are war babies, after all), and what were the circumstances of our conceptions in 1943? (3-day leave, fathers in essential industries, fathers in service in U.S., or what?)

Also, how the war affected us? The St. Louis postwar housing shortage, for instance, meant that I lived in an 85% Jewish neighborhood in Clayton through fourth grade.

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