Holyoke P. ‘Hokie’ Adams

2011-10-09T08:00:00Z Holyoke P. ‘Hokie’ Adams Corvallis Gazette Times
October 09, 2011 8:00 am

Oct. 30, 1922 — Sept. 27, 2011

Corvallis resident Hokie Adams died Tuesday, Sept. 27, at Corvallis Caring Place. He was in his 89th year.

Hokie was born in St. Johnsbury, Vt., to Margaret and Harold Adams.

Hokie was a longtime resident of Corvallis, active in the community and First Congregational United Church of Christ. He was a volunteer for Dial-a-Bus and Meals on Wheels. He was an active member of the Kiwanis Club of Corvallis, the Corvallis Garden Club and the Isaac Walton League. He loved his family, and always made sure everyone was doing well.

He grew up during the Roaring Twenties in Melrose, Mass., and got up to a few antics with his friends. After high school graduation, he entered the University of Maine in Orono, studying animal science.

When World War II began, he left school with many of his classmates to serve the country. He was stationed in the Philippines. After completing service, he reentered college, where he met Jean Ritchie, whom he married.

He finished his degree and moved to Madison, Wis., to complete a doctorate in dairy science and biochemistry. Hokie and Jean lived in a trailer, and in the winter their shoes would freeze to the floor.

Their oldest daughter, Peggy, was born during the time Hokie was in graduate school. With degree in hand, Hokie accepted a position with an agricultural feed company in Ellington, Conn. Doug was born shortly afterward, followed by Sarah. They then moved a short way to Tolland, Conn., and the family grew with the additions of Mac, Tom and Janet.

In 1964, the family moved out to the Wild West in Reno, Nev., where Hokie accepted a position at the University of Nevada, Reno as a dairy extension specialist. Here the family settled until 1971, when Hokie moved to Oregon State University as a dairy specialist.

Hokie left his mark throughout his travels as an active member of each community and the local church he attended. His easygoing manner and sense of humor made him popular with co-workers and neighbors. Hokie retired from OSU in 1982. He became more active in the community, and worked as an emeritus professor for OSU. He was able to travel to a number of countries to consult on dairy practices.

He proudly watched his children grow and then have children of their own. He loved being a grandpa. He enjoyed working in his yard, and took up activities like beer-making. Of course he could often be found dozing in “his” chair while reading a good book.

Hokie strongly supported the peace movement and programs such as Habitat for Humanity and the Nature Conservancy. He had a strong sense of responsibility for his family and humanity.

He enjoyed traveling, and took his last adventure to China with his son Doug.

Until the last few years, he retained his contact with the retirees office at OSU, getting up in the morning to go to work. When he was unable to get out as often, he enjoyed visits from family and friends.

The weekend preceding his death, he met his first great-grandchild, Hazel Jean. He and his wife, Jean, celebrated their 64th year of marriage in August.

Survivors include his wife, Jean; daughters, Peggy Adams of Beavercreek, Sarah Mahoskey and husband, Bill, of Snohomish, Wash., Janet Bedell and husband, Keith, of Crooked River; sons, Doug Adams and wife, Patty, of Albany, Mac Adams and wife, Susan, of Athens, Ga., and Tom Adams and wife, Erin, of St. Louis, Mo.; 12 grandchildren; and one great-grandchild. He was preceded in death by his only brother, Sam, in 2010.

Hokie’s spirit of generosity, humor and responsibility will remain with family and friends.

A celebration of life will take place at 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 16, at First Congregational United Church of Christ. A reception will follow the service.

In lieu of flowers, remembrances can be made to Benton Hospice Service, Benton Habitat for Humanity or the Corvallis Kiwanis Foundation.

DeMoss-Durdan Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

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