Hoffmann pic

Dr. J. “Greg” Hoffmann, age 66, of Hartford, Eagle River and Waupaca, passed away on Sunday, May 7, 2017.

He was born on July 26, 1950 in Hartford to parents Dr. J. Gregory and Marie (nee Schwartz) Hoffmann. “Doc” continued the family legacy of practicing medicine throughout the state. He was nationally recognized as a specialist in treating Lyme Disease. Family, friends and patients will always remember his compassion, bedside manor, his “old school” approach to his profession and his “cowboy” attitude. He loved the outdoors, spending time hunting, fishing and enjoying his cabin in the north woods.

Dr. Hoffmann is survived by two children, Erica (fiancé James Estrada) Hoffmann and Shane (Erika); one granddaughter, Madison; brother, Tom (Krista); nieces, Lindsay (Shane) Becker, Courtney (Zach) Fricke; nephew, Cassidy (Cristy); former spouse, Anne (nee Rublee) Hoffmann. Also survived by other relatives and many friends. Dr. Hoffmann is preceded in death by his parents.

A time of visitation and support for family and friends will be held at St. Kilian Catholic Church, 264 W. State St., Hartford on Thursday, May 11 from 4:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at St. Kilian Catholic Church, on Friday, May 12 at 10:30 a.m. Committal Service will be held at Clearwater Lake Cemetery on Friday, May 12 at 4:30 p.m. A gathering will be held after the committal to continue the memories and fellowship at the Oneida Village in Three Lakes, WI. In lieu of flowers, memorials are appreciated to St. Kilian Catholic Church, St. Theresa Catholic Church, Three Lakes, WI or Shimon Funeral Home is serving the family.  Eulogy by Mike Nickel, founder of the Wisconsin Lyme On-line Support Group:, and founder and past president of the Wisconsin Lyme Network .

It is with great sadness that we inform you of the passing of Dr. John G. Hoffmann. “Doc” as he was affectionately called by everyone will be greatly missed. Dr. Hoffmann’s remarkable life and caring was taken on May 7th 2017.

Dr. Hoffmann successfully treated thousands of lyme patients over the years. His labor of love for his patients often came at great personal cost to himself. In those trying times the lyme community rallied around the man who sacrificed so much. I recall vividly the outpouring of letters and support from Mom’s and Dad’s thankful that their wheelchair bound children could run on the track team again or their child that had lost the ability to speak in complete sentences was now an honor student. He pulled dozens of children out of wheelchairs. Hundreds of these letters and testimonials to Dr. Hoffmann were placed into a binder and given to him many years ago so he knew how much everyone loved and appreciated him. I wonder how many disabled children his detractors pulled from wheelchairs ?

Broken bodies and crushed spirits hobbling down the steps of his tiny basement office to regain the hope that we had all lost so long ago. A $125 office visit so your child could walk again. Many could not afford even this token amount. Doc would get paid in chickens and be thankful for the eggs.

Dr. Hoffmann offered three things to all his patients. Calm, hope, and finally, healing. His quiet confidence, his fatherly knowledge, his straight talk, his cowboy boots and hat presented a man genuine in spirit and compassionate in heart. He afforded himself the luxury of a two-week hunting vacation each fall out west. Riding Amtrak, viewing the wide expanse of the western United States while the size paled in comparison to the diameters of his heart.

Dr. Hoffmann’s own lyme disease battle had a resurgence several months ago but he never wavered in treating his patients. We all owe our lives and the lives of our loved ones to Dr. John Gregory Hoffmann.

There is only one “Doc”. There will be no other.

With sincerity and great appreciation,

Your Friends

*** A note from me***

I only had the pleasure of meeting Doc Hoffman a few times, but they are etched into my memory forever.

He graciously spoke at our support group a few years ago.  You can hear the audio file here:  From Doc I learned that he started treating Lyme disease before it had a name.  He said they knew it was a Rickettsial type of disease but it was nameless.  He also said that treatment resolution in the 70’s and 80’s took months, whereas treatment resolution now takes more than three years for those who do not immediately get treated after being bitten by a tick.

The man was uncanny.  He knew these pathogens well and could have written books, but chose to be a humble clinician.  In fact, he would often repeat the phrase, “I’m just a clinician,” as if that was something lowly.

All I know is that thousands appreciated the fact he chose to treat people day in and day out rather than receive accolades.  He was happy with a home made pie.  And that is what made the man so endearing, with that signature cowboy hat and calm demeanor.  Nothing rattled him.  Not even really, really sick and desperate people.

Doc was a calm in the storm.