Donald H. Hoch 1927-2019

Don Hoch passed from this life at 7:55 AM on December 30th, 2019, with his 5 children close at hand. He had been a resident at Mercarios Assisted Living Center in Aurora, CO. for the past 5 years where he had been fighting the onset of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. 
He will be mostly remembered for his 50 plus years as a Dentist and his long-time community service in the Westminster area. 
Donald Henry Hoch was born in Yuma, CO. in July of 1927 to the union of Arnold Hoch and Zella Fail. He was the youngest of 3 brothers. His parents and his 2 older brothers, Robert S. and Richard A., all preceded him in death. Don attended school and church in Yuma, CO. through high school, where he excelled in athletics. 
After high school, Don served his country in the United States Army as a clerk in charge of typing up discharge orders for soldiers coming home to the U. S. from World War II. After serving his country in the Army, Don enrolled in the Colorado School of Agricultural and Mining College in Fort Collins, CO.
Don was a “walk on, tryout” for The Colorado A&M football program, securing a starting position on the Varsity Squad, and playing there for four seasons because of the 4 year eligibility rule due to the war. Don was awarded a scholarship in football for 3 of those four years. He played on the team that took Colorado A&M to their first-ever Bowl Game: the 1949 Raisin Bowl in Fresno, CA. The “Aggies”, as they were called, lost that game 20 to 21, in the highest scoring Raisin Bowl of all the eight Raisin Bowls played. Don played with teammates Dale Dodrill, Thurman McGraw, and Jack Christiansen. These players went on to play Professional Football and are in the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton Ohio. Don was invited to try out with the Detroit Lions, but instead chose to start a family. 
Don was a member of the Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity and had as fraternity brothers Roy Romer and Kenny Monfort to mention a few of them.
Don loved college life: his classes, his school, his fraternity, his team. But while at college, Don ran into something that he loved even more than these: Betty Champion, who would become his first wife. They were married on December 19th, 1948, and had five children: Randy, Vickie, Dana, Dan, and Baby Becky. These all survive him to date. 
Don received a Bachelor of Science degree from Colorado A&M as well as a teaching certificate. Don signed on as a coach and teacher with the Delta, CO. School District for 2 years. Coaching and teaching didn’t completely fulfill Don, so he began to look for some other way to provide for his future family. 
In the late 1800’s, The Hoch family in Yuma had started and owned the Hoch Lumber, Coal, and Premix Company in Yuma. Between school years at Delta and while on a summer working vacation to Yuma, Don painted a house for the area Dentist, Dr. Hemphill. After talking with Doc Hemphill, Don decided to become a Dentist. 
Don made it through 2 years at C. U. in Boulder securing the classes needed for his predental certification. Immediately following, Don was accepted into the Dental School Program at the University of Nebraska. He graduated 4 years later and passed the Dental Board Exams in Nebraska in 1957 and became a Doctor of Dental Surgery.  (DDS).
Don was then an Alumni of the CSU Aggies/Rams (formerly CO. A&M in Fort Collins, CO.); the C.U. Buffaloes, University of Colorado, in Boulder, CO.; and the University of Nebraska, Cornhuskers, in Lincoln, NE.  Don said that he couldn’t lose when rooting for ANY team, but that being an Alumni of three Universities sure can get expensive! 
Don then moved his family to Westminster, CO., passing the Dental Board Exams in Colorado, receiving his DDS, and his license to practice Dentistry in Colorado. 
Joining in with two MD’s, Dr. Ansley and Dr. Anderson, Don opened a practice in the Bradburn Medical Building in 1959 offering dental care at this existing medical facility.
Two years later, Don talked a junior classmate and ‘Husker’ Alumni into joining him, and soon Dr. Hoch and Dr. James M. Bennett opened the Cedarwood Square Professional Building at 80th Ave. and Sheridan Blvd. in Westminster, CO. 
Don and Jim would go on to have an impact on the Dental Profession in Colorado as it exists today. They both gave freely of their time to help in the establishing of a Dental School at the University of Colorado in Denver, offering free dentistry for the disadvantaged and the elderly at Tri-County Health, the Denver Dental Study Group, and the Westminster Dental Study Group. They both volunteered for the National and State Dental Societies as well as State Healthcare Regulatory Agencies. Don and Jim both knew the Lord, so giving back came easily for them. 
Don also gave civically. He served on the Westminster City Council that assured Westminster’s growth for the next 100 years by coming up with a Water to Growth Model. He also served as their Mayor for some of those years. 
Don helped to organize and establish the first Rotary Club in Westminster. He was a Charter Member, also the last living Charter Member, and Past President of the first Rotary Club in Westminster. He was active in this club and Rotary International for the rest of his life. 
Don helped establish and charter the Citizens Bank of Westminster where he sat on the Board of Directors for many years. 
Don was a good and loving father to his family. The family sponsored some of the Rotary Exchange Students for several years from the Westminster Rotary Club. Don had a passion for camping, fishing, and hunting which his children learned to love. Family vacations were a high point for Don – especially with 5 children and a possible exchange student or two. Some of Don’s other passions included golf, skiing, and sailing. 
In 1978 Don married a second time, bringing more members into the family. Don married Betty Jo (BJ) Billings. This union added BJ’s Mom and Dad, Bob and Lucy Billings; sisters Wanda and Linda Lindsey; and brother Terry to the original family unit. One could say that Don got a new addition to the family, but the whole family got a new set of ‘steps’. The “crowning glory” of the addition was BJ’s minor daughter, Kristen, along with cousins Keesha and Kenna. These edged Baby Becky out as the ‘youngest’!
They all blended together nicely and demonstrated the depth of Don’s love for family. 
If Kristen was the icing on the family cake, then the ‘love of her life’ and soul mate, Mark Jadvani
, would have to be the sprinkles. Kristen had Cystic Fibrosis from birth. Kristen outlived her initial life expectancy of 12 years old. She worked with Pharmaceutical companies and the National Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, flying around the country, teaching young CF victims how to live more fully with their disease. She lived to her late 40’s, fighting the good fight and helping others. Sadly, Kristen; her mom, BJ; and her grandparents, Bob and Lucy, all proceeded Don in death. 
Don is survived by the rest of BJ’s family and Mark Jadvani. From his first marriage with Betty Champion Hoch, he is survived by Betty; their five children and spouses; eight grandchildren and spouses; and eight great-grandchildren. 
Don is survived by numerous and WONDERFUL nieces, nephews, and cousins in California, Colorado, Texas, and many other parts of the US. 
His family will miss him!
If Don were still here, he would tell you all, “Cheers,” and, “God Speed”!
Thank you for letting us tell you about our Dad! The Hoch Kids.