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Obituary: Hofmeister Jr., John M. “Jack”

John M. “Jack” Hofmeister Jr. obit
John M. “Jack” Hofmeister Jr. obit(none)
Published: Oct. 11, 2021 at 9:25 AM EDT
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John M. “Jack” Hofmeister Jr., 81, of Clarksburg, WV and formerly Parkersburg, WV, passed away on Monday, October 4, 2021, at the West Virginia Veterans Nursing Facility in Clarksburg. He was born in Buffalo, NY on July 14, 1940, a son of the late John M. Hofmeister Sr. and Loretta M. (Heindl) Hofmeister.

Jack is survived by his two children, Margo H. Jacob (Mike) of West Chester, OH, and Michael J. Hofmeister (Selena) of Marietta, OH; one sister, Corine Lahrs (partner Ralph) of Cheektowaga, NY; step-granddaughter Kacee Farnsworth of Marietta, OH; and his former wife and mother of his children, Cecelia Helmick (Ron) of Parkersburg.

Jack was a graduate of the class of 1959 at Bishop Timon High School in Buffalo, NY, and was Catholic by faith. As a young boy, he began piano lessons, however, they were short-lived when the instructor realized his gift for playing by ear. He explored many instruments and excelled at both the piano and guitar. He enjoyed performing for family and friends and continued to play well into his 70′s.

Ultimately, it was his passion for photography that began in the late teens that gave him clarity and purpose. After graduation, he joined Gateway Photographic Studios in Pittsburgh. His early career spanned the full range of technical learning, and when he joined the Army in 1963, he was picked to work in the photo lab at Fort Meyer. When he returned to Gateway in 1965 he resumed his lab work and was placed in charge of quality control for both black and white and color lab work a year later. He simultaneously became an assistant photographer, and it was at that time he received his first professional recognition. Three years later he joined Aubrey Lee Associates in Pittsburgh as a full-time photographer.

In 1970, he went to Parkersburg to run the Primacolor Photographic Studio division of Pappas Brothers. In 1976, he and his family moved to DePere, Wisconsin where they established “The Family Jewels,” an antique sales and furniture refinishing business. Jack shifted his artistic talents and used his keen eye for detail to become known as an expert furniture restorer. He was constantly on the hunt for vintage treasures frequenting local flea markets and auctions with his family in tow.

In 1985, wanting to return to photography, he and his family moved back to Parkersburg, WV. He joined Osborn Photographic Illustration Inc. as a Darkroom Lab Technician and eventually retired from there. Throughout his career, he participated in several photography exhibits in the Mid-Ohio Valley and the Columbus, OH area. Most notable were the exhibits that featured Photo-Illusion prints created from a process he named “Photographic Emulsion Manipulation”.

Jack’s creativity extended well beyond the lens as he was also a skilled illustrator, painter, and calligrapher. He was both a polio and cancer survivor.

Mr. Hofmeister’s wishes for cremation will be honored and a celebration of his life will be announced at a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in his memory may be made to NAMI (Nami.org) or to Rotary International (Rotary.org).

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