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The man, the myth, the legend. Hoffman.

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After 44 years of teaching, Mr. Hoffman will be retiring with the class of 2017. The Talon got the inside scoop on his favorite memories of teaching at Magnet, along with some parting wisdom.

Why are you leaving magnet?

“My family decided it was time for me to retire. Im 70 years old, and my wife says its time. We are going to move to our home in Pinehurst, North Carolina where my teaching and coaching will be confined to five grandchildren”

Will you continue working at all?

“I accepted an offer to work at Pinehurst Golf Resort and Spa where I will do various jobs, greet people as they come in and drive around on a golf cart and see how people are enjoying their stay. I’m just looking forward to the next chapter in my life. I spent fifteen years teaching in and around New York City, then I was with the Texas Rangers baseball team for nine years in Daytona. I then went back to teaching in upstate New York for another fifteen years and was about to retire when I got the call from magnet, and down we came to Charleston.”

Why did you come to Magnet in the first place?

“Well, when I first came down here it was an invitation from the principal at the time who was a former student of mine. She asked me to help with the history program. I told her I would give her five years tops, but five years turned into 14, basically because the kids are so great. The athletics program needed a good punch up, so I took that job on a couple years later. I coached the softball team for fourteen years, so I mean, it’s just been a great fourteen years. I would keep going if I could, but owe it to my family.You guys have a unique situation here, you wont realize how unique it was until you get older but high schools are not like this. Thats what has kept me here for fourteen years, I really intended on just teaching another five years and calling it quits.”

Did you have any crazy experiences here at magnet?

“Not at all, the kids here at magnet have been wonderful. I’v taught AP Psychology and AP US History for most of my time here. I’v seen three or four principals, Mrs. Peterson has been been great, she is leaving with me so we will go out the door together.”

What kind of history have you experienced in your years of teaching?

“I started in 1968, before some of your parents were born. I was actually teaching my first class when Martin Luther King was assassinated, I worked for Robert Kennedy during the primary campaign of 1968 and was out in LA with him when he was assassinated. Those were crazy days. I got close with Kurt Vonnegut one summer in the 6o’s, I was his bartender. He would come in a drink and we would talk, I learned a lot from him. Dave Letterman is a good friend of mine, we went to college together.”

Who has inspired you the most?

“Its been my teachers and my coaches that have really been my inspiration, so I have tried to provide that back. It’s not really about the academics, its not really about the math or the science or the social studies. Its about helping you guys develop into good people. People that you can be proud to be. And thats hard to do sometimes, keep you guys on the right path. I think you’ll look back and see the people that influence you the most are the teachers, it is for all of us.”

Although Mr. Hoffman will be leaving us physically, he will live on in our hearts forever. All that he has taught us will guide us on our way through future experiences. I think its safe to say, we have all grow into better people since he came into our lives. Goodbye Mr. Hoffman, 2003-2017. 

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