Cover photo for Hazel M. Hoffman's Obituary
Hazel M. Hoffman Profile Photo

Hazel M. Hoffman

February 13, 1926 — August 21, 2023

Hazel M. Hoffman (Nicks), of North Lake, WI, passed away on Monday, August 21, 2023, after a life well-lived of 97 years. Born on February 13, 1926, to Wayne and Ethel (Beider) Nicks in Waukesha, where her family lived, they later moved to Wales and then Palmyra.

During her formative years, Hazel moved to Milwaukee to work as a nanny, earning enough money to support her move to New York City where she worked as a model for a fabric company. Moving back to Wisconsin, fate brought her together with Ellwood (Puff) Hoffman and they married in 1945. They moved to Chicago briefly, where their first child was born but made their way back to Wisconsin to raise their two children in North Lake.

During WWII, Hazel was “Rosie the Riveter”, working at Waukesha Motor Works as a forklift operator. In 1951, Puff and Hazel, along with Puff’s brother, Bill, and his wife Sylvia, purchased the North Lake Hotel, currently known as The North Lake Inn. They operated the establishment until 1972 making many memories with both immediate and extended family.

Hazel loved to sew and could sew anything ranging from clothing for herself and her children to treasured prom dresses for her granddaughters, draperies, and reupholstered furniture. If she had material, a sewing machine, a needle, and thread, she could create virtually anything.

Another of Hazel’s passions was baking. She was known for her delicious, homemade cheesecake. Many hours were spent in the kitchen preparing wonderful meals and desserts for her family. In addition, she found joy in traveling, spending time at their cottage up north, going to Florida with Puff and later with Rudy, and venturing as far as Hawaii.

A pillar of strength within her family, Hazel’s role as a matriarch was unwavering. Over the years, her house was often filled with her many grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and other family members. Hazel was a good friend to many, and a person you could count on to never lead you astray. She will be missed by many.

Hazel is preceded in death by her husband of 40 years, Ellwood Hoffman; her second husband Rudy Zettining; and her parents. She will be greatly missed by her children, Douglas Hoffman (Helen Kondos) and Diane Hoffman (Larry Fischer): grandchildren, Chandra (Brian) Bronsted, Danielle (Jim) Weber, Matthew (Marisa) Hoffman, and Carly (Robert) Rawski. She is also survived by her brother, Dennis (Sue) Nicks; her sisters, Joy Davis, Becky Smale, and Judy Smith, cherished family Thomas and Deanna Hess, along with 14 great-grandchildren, 12 great-great-grandchildren, many nieces, nephews, other family members and close friends.

Thank you to the dedicated staff at ProHealth Care and Angel’s Grace Hospice, 

who provided exceptional care to Hazel during her final days surrounded by her family.

Visitation is scheduled at Evert-Luko Funeral Home, located at 170 Warren Avenue in Hartland, on Wednesday, August 30, 2023, from 10:00 a.m. until the time of the service at 12:00 p.m. Interment will take place at St. Clare Cemetery on Highway VV in North Lake at 2:30 p.m. In lieu of flowers, donations made to the family would be appreciated and will be forwarded to HAWS and the North Lake Town Hall Library in Hazel’s name.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Hazel M. Hoffman, please visit our flower store.

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Wednesday, August 30, 2023

10:00am - 12:00 pm (Central time)

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Wednesday, August 30, 2023

Starts at 12:00 pm (Central time)

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