Helga Hoffman
1933 - 2021
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Helga Hoffman

Urbandale - Helga Svanhild Tofteland Hoffman, 87, was called home to be with the Lord Jesus on January 27, 2021. Helga was born in Luverne, Minnesota, on August 27, 1933, to Reinert and Tilda (Akersmyr) Tofteland. She was raised on the Tofteland farm, where the family spoke Norwegian. Helga first learned English when she began her education in a one-room schoolhouse. She graduated from Augustana Academy and furthered her education at Augustana College in Sioux Falls.

On June 21, 1953, Helga married Wayne Hoffman at Zion Lutheran Church in Luverne. Their union was blessed by five exceptional children. Through their 67 years of marriage, Wayne and Helga made homes in South Dakota, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, and Iowa. Helga was an integral and vital part of Wayne's ministry in the many churches he served as a Presbyterian pastor.

Helga had a strong connection to her Norwegian heritage, which she lovingly shared with her family through food, language and traditions. She was greatly loved and admired by her family who continue to be blessed by her sweet and kind spirit. Her deep and abiding faith in God were evident in her gracious and gentle nature. At every dinner or party, Helga was everyone's favorite companion due to her genuine warmth and friendliness. When you left her home, she was always at the front window and gave her famous "grandma wave."

To cherish her memory, Helga leaves behind her husband Wayne and children Peggy Ann Radio and her husband Tom; Pamela Jo Merrick and her husband John; Eric Jon and his wife Rebecca; Nancy Helga Thompson and her husband Stan; and Jason Wayne and his wife Tina. Helga is also survived by her 14 grandchildren: Ingrid Radio, Helga Radio, Erik (Elika Ortega) Radio, Courtney (Corey) Kopatich, Emily (Wade) Ballinger, Matthew (Rachel) Merrick, Rachel Jackson, Jon (Jordan) Hoffman, Andrew (Mary Katherine) Thompson, Matthew Thompson, Samuel (Rachel) Thompson, Benjamin Thompson, Noah Hoffman and Jonah Hoffman; and 10 great grandchildren: Kylie, Kate and Carson Kopatich, Isla and Jude Jackson, Will and Clara Ballinger, Lincoln and Memphis Hoffman, and Tatum Thompson. She is also survived by her sister Lily Hartmann, sister and brother-in-law Shirley and Richard Schoffelman, sisters-in-law Marian Hoffman and Carolyn Tofteland, and a large extended family. She was preceded in death by her parents, her brothers Arthur and Arnold, and her sister Rosa.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, February 6, 2021, at 2 p.m. at Westkirk Presbyterian Church, 2700 Colby Woods Drive, in Urbandale, or livestream at www.mclarensresthavenchapel.com. The family respectfully requests that guests wear masks and practice social distancing.

Memorials to honor Helga may be directed to Westkirk Presbyterian Church.






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Published in the Des Moines Register from Jan. 28 to Jan. 31, 2021.
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February 3, 2021
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February 3, 2021
What a great soul I had the privilege to know. She will be missed.
Cindy McBride
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February 2, 2021
Helga was a very special and gracious lady! Her obituary reminded me of how we initially bonded over our shared Norweigan heritage, Luverne and Augustana College. I am sure that you will have many happy memories but she will be missed. Wishing you the best in these times.
Corrine and Greg Ganske
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January 30, 2021
Helga was definitely a sweet lady. Always enjoyed our Quester meetings at her house. She was such a gracious hostess. Always enjoyed visiting with her. Cherish all the good memories!
Vicki Baker
Vicki Baker
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