Jackqualyn Rae Hoffman Bassett arrived on January 26, 1947, on Sunday in Yankton, South Dakota, to parents Robert Stofer Hoffman, and Arlean Bernice Vilhauer. Her birthday would have marked 76 years of life. She passed through the veil on January 24, 2023 at her Rocklin CA. home.
She was a wonderful daughter of God, a beloved sweetheart, a mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, and a devoted disciple of Jesus Christ. As an only child she spent her early years in South Dakota until her parents moved to California, living in Bellflower and La Mirada. In 1965 she was in the first graduating class of La Mirada High School.
The talented musician played many interments, was in several school bands, and nicknamed “Tink” because she played the glockenspiel in the marching band, Disney’s Tinker Bell was her logo of choice. While in high school she joined the Rainbow Girls, a group for young women. In her senior year of high school she met Ron Bassett, her future husband, a member of the Order of DeMolay, and they began dating. He escorted Jackie to her Senior Prom.
Ron, better known as “Smokey”, joined the Air Force in 1965. His first assignment was to a radar squadron on Mount Tamalpais in Marin County, CA, and so there were long drives for short dates with his sweetheart. Jackie and Smokey were married in 1966 at Norwalk, CA. They lived in San Rafael, son William, was born at the nearby Hamilton AFB. In 1968 orders were received to West Germany, the family was soon on their way and they lived in a German village. In October 1968 baby Richard joined them and in February 1970 the cute little daughter Kristina arrived. Both were born at the Wiesbaden military hospital.
Each May for the next 4 years her husband made military moves. First to Minnesota, then to Alaska, back to California and to Alaska again before 3 years at McClellan AFB. Again Jackie took the lead purchasing a home in Rancho Cordova with a short walk to the kid’s school and church. On July 9, 1977, the family were sealed together for all time and eternity in the Oakland Temple.
They returned to West Germany and lived in a military housing area near the city of Kaiserslautern. Here they stayed for 6 years and had many adventures visiting much of Western Europe. Jackie worked at the base hobby shop and took advanced art lessons from the University of Wiesbaden professor of art. Various art works hang in their home as testimony of her artistic talent. Her loving nature and leadership skills helped as she served as the Relief Society President of the largest overseas military LDS Ward, where she was able to share her love and talents.
By August 1985 the family had grown up, William graduated from high school, and the family was headed to Andrews Air Force Base near Washington D.C., where Jackie worked at the base hospital and served as a seminary teacher. William was called to serve a mission in Hong Kong, Richard graduated from high school and left for his mission in Oregon, and in the Spring of 1988, after Kris graduated, the family retired after 23 years active duty, and Jackie, Smokey, Kris and Sammy (their dog) headed west, returning to their Rancho Cordova home. In 1989 they moved into the Rocklin house that has been their home for 34 years and became home-base as their sons’ married and families grew. Grandkids can tell stories of many family gatherings, wild Christmas’ morning gift openings, Easter egg hunts, birthdays and Thanksgiving feasts.
Jackie worked at Mather AFB, then at McClellan, where Smokey was the Chief of Community Relations and Jackie accompanied him to community events. In 2001, McClellan closed and Jackie worked for a time at Beale AFB, then with the federal Department of Reclamation. While there she was sent to New Orleans to supervise clean-up efforts following Hurricane Katrina, a month-long task that tested her leadership abilities and work ethic. In 2009 Jackie also retired with 23 years of federal service.
Jackie loved to travel, experiencing new places and adventures! She has been to 26 countries, walked where the Savior had walked in Israel, snorkeled in the Caribbean, ate onion soup at a street café in Paris, been on the Great Wall of China and visited the new Rome Temple.
Perhaps her longest, but quiet efforts to serve, was for 12 years she sewed baby blankets for the Sutter Medical Center’s NitCu ward. She made 10 blankets every month! As each small blanket was completed she would give it a mother’s hug.
Jackie’s greatest joy was her family which grew to 11 grandchildren, two step-grandchildren, two great grandchildren, and several spouses. Her three children achieved college degrees, as did two grandchildren, and there have been seven missions served. Although mostly bed ridden for the past year, in May she went to Utah to attend a grandson’s wedding to a young lady that Jackie quickly loved as much as the rest of her kids. Then in August she joined 20 members of her family for an Alaskan cruise. Each day she got on an electric scooter and joined her “kids” for various activities. She had so much fun zipping around the ship and being an active part of her family’s adventure, it really energized her!
In November they marked their 56th wedding anniversary, and later were surprised when several grandkids arrived from Utah. One of the granddaughters had made a quilt from material sent from the other grandkids and they presented it to their Grandmother! Making the gathering even more precious was Jackie being able to hold her 3-month old great-grandson, named Jackson after her. The joy on her face was so beautiful as her “kids” gathered around the bed as she met this newest family member.
On Tuesday morning, January 24, while asleep in her hospital bed in the front room, once the site of so many celebrations, she quietly completed her earthly mission. Two days later, on the 26th, she may have celebrated her 76th birthday with many departed family members that were waiting for her to arrive, many of whom she had completed temple work for over the years.
What a life story this great woman had, what a living testimony she was for many who are here today.