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  • "Always helpful, honest, fair....A Good and Decent Man...."
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    - Raymond DuBois
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HOFFMANN MARTIN R. HOFFMANN Martin Richard Hoffmann, former Secretary of the Army, tireless veterans advocate, bluegrass aficionado and mountain tenor, fearless downhill skier, craftsman, sailor, environmentalist, poet, patriot, inspirational and fun-loving father and grandfather, and devoted and beloved husband, died on Monday, July 14, 2014, at the age of 82. Born in Stockbridge MA, Marty moved with his family to Colorado Springs, CO. during WWII. Though he returned East for school, his early life in the West shaped his character and left him with a life-long love of bluegrass music and alpine skiing, and life-shaping experience as a woodsman and logger. He was a graduate of The Middlesex School of Concord, MA in 1950 and of Princeton University in 1954. In the fall of that year he enlisted in the US Army, and, after completing Artillery School and OCS at Fort Sill, OK, was commissioned in November 1955 as a 2nd Lieutenant. He attended Airborne School at Fort Bragg, NC and then served in the 101st Airborne Division at Fort Campbell, KY. In 1958, he left active service having achieved the rank of 1st Lieutenant, to serve in the Reserve and attend the Law School at the University of Virginia, from which he graduated in 1961. While serving in the Reserve he achieved the rank of Major, and remained in the US Army until 1975, when he resigned and was Honorably Discharged, in preparation for becoming Secretary. Once out of law school, Marty married the former Margaret McCabe of New Kensington, PA, and began to work as a lawyer in several capacities in and around the US Government including at the US Court of Appeals and in the US Attorney's office. In 1965, he became Minority Counsel on the Judiciary Committee for the US House of Representatives; and in 1967 moved to the Senate chambers as Legal Counsel to Senator Charles Percy (R. IL). In 1969 he moved to Dallas, TX to be Assistant General Counsel of the University Computing Company and, two years later, returned to Washington to continue serving his country. Starting in 1971, he served as the General Counsel of the Atomic Energy Commission under then Chairman James Schlesinger. In 1973, he moved to the Pentagon when Mr. Schlesinger became Secretary of Defense and served as The Special Assistant to the Secretary and Deputy Secretary of Defense; General Counsel for the Department of Defense; and, in 1975, was sworn in as Secretary of the US Army. As the civilian head of the Army, under Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and President Gerald R. Ford, Marty presided over the development of the All-Volunteer Force; a review of weapons system procurement and the development of new systems, including the Abrams Tank, the Bradley Fighting Vehicle, and the Apache Helicopter; and guided the Army through the challenges of the cheating scandal at West Point in 1976. Following the results of the Presidential election in 1976, Hoffmann resigned his position and moved to the private sector, though his support of, dedication to and involvement with the US Army never faltered throughout his life. In 1977, Marty opened the Washington DC office for the Chicago-based law firm of Gardner, Carton and Douglas. As managing partner, he directed the growth and development of the office, working nationally and internationally. Aware of the coming of the computer age, Hoffmann moved to Digital Equipment Corporation in Maynard, MA. in 1989 as a vice president and General Counsel and later joined M.I.T. as a Senior Visiting Fellow for 2 years in the Center for Policy, Technology & Industrial Development. Returning to Washington in 1995 to be Of Counsel to Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, Marty worked on a wide range of projects. From the 1990?s into the early 2000?s, Marty was also involved on the Boards of several organizations and businesses, including Mitretech Systems, Inc.; SeaChange, Inc.; Castle Energy; Friends For Tomorrow; Center for International Management and Education; International Executive Service Corps; and Citizens Network for Foreign Affairs, among others. In 2000, Marty returned to the service of his country at the Pentagon, again under Donald Rumsfeld, aiding with the transition team for the new administration. Following the events of 9/11 and the beginning of the Afghan war, Marty helped to form and develop the Defense Resources Support Office - Afghanistan. Implemented through the US Army and designed to support the Afghan people in redeveloping all sectors, the group worked to provide on-the-ground, expert consultants to work directly with the Afghan people. Both through the eyes of this program and personally witnessing, on civilian and uniformed colleagues, the effects of IED attacks, Marty observed the devastating results of Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) and subsequent Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). For the last 7 years of his life Marty worked tirelessly for the advancement and use of Hyperbaric Oxygen in the treatment of soldiers suffering from TBI and PTSD. Working with expert physicians, members of the US Congress, members of the Armed Services, state officials across the country and other dedicated patriots, Marty was instrumental in helping raise awareness and promoting the effective use of and continued research about Hyperbaric Oxygen Treatment for TBI. Never was his passion for the well being, care,and treatment of our soldiers and their families more intense than during his work on this campaign. A resident of Washington, DC; Flint Hill, VA; and Taos, NM; Marty was equally happy working a chainsaw or skidding logs with his tractor in the woods near the Rappahannock river; cruising the runs of Taos Ski Valley; flat-picking his guitar and singing with his band at a club in the DC area; or sailing onto a mooring (despite protests from the crew) on a sailboat in the waters anywhere from Maine to the Caribbean. But never was he happier than when he was able to share time and adventures with his family, whom he loved dearly. Marty is survived by his beloved Muggy; his sisters Elizabeth Longstreet, Cecil Hoffmann, and Molly MacKinnon; his children Cecil (Heidi) Hoffmann Slye and her husband Paul, Bill Hoffmann and his partner Donna Fava, Bern Hoffmann and his wife Jenni; and by his grandchildren McCabe and Sam Slye and Park Hoffmann. Memorial services are currently pending. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made "In Memory of Martin Hoffmann" to The International Hyperbaric Medical Foundation (IHMF), 8210 Cinder Bed Road, Suite C-3, Lorton, VA 22079-1135; or to the . Memorial services are currently pending. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made "In Memory of Martin Hoffmann" to The International Hyperbaric Medical Foundation (IHMF), 8210 Cinder Bed Road, Suite C-3, Lorton, VA 22079-1135; or to the .

Published in The Washington Post on July 22, 2014
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