Stacy Hoffman Daniels
By Dianne Neuman Whittington
Stacy Hoffman Daniels (1947-1985)
Stacy was born August 1,1945, at Fort Riley in Geary, Kansas where her father was still in the service. She moved to Midland in 1948-49. Her uncle, Hal Rachal, acquired Air Park. Her family moved to Midland so Mr. Hoffman could partner and manage that little airport. They offered chartering services, fuel, and maybe maintenance. Her father also sold Cessnas. I met Stacy and Suzi Northcutt in 7th grade at San Jacinto. I think we all sat at the same table in the lunch room. By 9th grade we had a large group of friends that stays in touch today. I remember playing the game Risk at Stacy’s house almost every Saturday. Stacy was a magnet that drew people to her and they stayed as everyone’s friends. After Graduating in 1963, Stacy attended SMU, I was at TCU, and Suzi Northcutt was at Tech. One summer we decided to rent an apartment in South Ft. Worth and attend summer school in Arlington. Stacy had us on a budget ($10 a week each) and set up house rules we followed most of the time. Our budget allowed for breakfast and dinner. Suzi cooked and am not sure what I did-I know it was not cleaning! We never had a disagreement and cemented a friendship that would continue through the years. Once Glenn and I returned to Ft. Worth and Bobby and Stacy were in Dallas, we continued our friendship as couples. She and Bobby had 3 children and later moved to Fairfield, TX where they opened a Western Store. There are no words to explain the shock and sadness that we all felt when Stacy was diagnosed with breast cancer. She was so young and so optimistic that everyone was hopeful. My mother had survived breast cancer so I knew it was possible. We supported her in every way we could from long distances and set up a reunion in Las Colinas to let her be surrounded by our love and hope. Mitt Edwards, Suzi Northcutt, Eva Kelly, Sheila Wilson, and JoAnne Rustamier traveled from out of town. Carol Key, Rozi Gillham, Shell Dougherty, Susie Moore, and I lived in the Metroplex. We all shared an afternoon gathered at a hotel suite. Stacy was in treatment then but was ever optimistic and our hope continued. Stacy continuously fought for remission-even traveling to Mexico when there was no other treatment for her in the states. My daughter and I traveled to Fairfield to spend a day and night with her and her children. Stacy was still in charge of everything : cooking our dinner on an outside grill and reminding me that we should not cook over charcoal. She was still worrying about my sinus headache, as she was still fiercely independent and refused to be “cared for”. It was a visit that I will always cherish. It was the last time I saw her. Stacy lost her battle on Sept. 2, 1987. She had just turned 42.
From bottom left: JoAnne Rustamier, Judy Dawkins, Suzi Northcutt, Dianne Neuman, Suzi Northcutt, Shell Dougherty, Mitt Edwards.Top row: Susie Moore, Stacy HoffmanEva Kelly took the picture.We were celebrating Suzi and Shell’s birthdays.
Part 2 By Suzi Northcutt:
Stacy Hoffman Daniels
Stacy began her school years as I did at North Elementary and James Bowie. Then to San Jacinto and Midland High. She attended SMU her freshman year and then transferred to The University of Texas where she graduated in 1967. She met Bobby Daniels there and they married. The year of 1971 found us both in Lubbock, and we spent many happy days together. She was a solid source of support for me that year that my husband spent in Viet Nam. Stacy and Bobby settled in Fairfield, Texas, which was his hometown and opened a western wear store. She had majored in marketing and Bobby had been in sales, so it was a great way for them to blend their expertise to make a living and raise their family that by then included a son and two daughters. Fairfield is a friendly, rural town and on one visit, we took the kids to the local rodeo where my son and daughter along with hers sat on the fence and wrestled baby calves and greased pigs. Of course my son wanted to know why we couldn’t live there. I know she delighted in her years there with her children growing up. Many Christmas cards pictured them all on horseback or outdoors together. She taught herself to cook and loved to share recipes. High school home economics was her introduction to sewing, and she excelled in providing outfits and costumes for all. She couldn’t have been more loved and treasured by her family and friends. She was just lovable and companionable, and her input on any subject or situation was sought after and welcomed. Stacy called in 1977 or ’78 and said she had been diagnosed with breast cancer. This was followed with surgery and the following years were spent undergoing all the other available treatments. Thankfully, we had several years left to get together as families and girlfriends before she passed away in 1987. Having too many precious memories of Stacy to relate, I’ll just share how she became Cleopatra of the back seat of my Morris Minor. Every morning I picked her up to go to school at MHS. But first I picked up Jo Ann Rustamier, who lived nearest. In the beginning, when we got to Stacy’s house, and Jo Ann would have to get out of the front bucket seat for Stacy to enter the back seat, they would argue about who should ride shotgun. That became tiresome, and one day Stacy just came out, got in the back seat, put her legs up in the seat, her books on the floor, her sunshades on, and flinging her arm over the backrest, she lounged like Cleopatra all the way to school. She acted like it was the best seat in the car and she owned it. No more arguing. And it became her permanent seat. Maybe this illustrates one aspect of her essence that enabled her to forever make the best of any situation and somehow emerge a winner. I miss her every day.