Cache Creek councillor Herb Hofer passed away on April 17 at the age of 74.
Hofer emigrated to Canada from Austria in 1963 and settled in Cache Creek, where he operated a deli in what is now the Castle Motel. After the deli closed he was a representative for Freybe, and was a familiar sight throughout the Cariboo making deliveries.
He was first elected to Cache Creek council in 1979, and served as councillor until 1984. He was then elected as director for TNRD Area “I”, where he served three terms between 1985 and 2002, and was appointed to the local hospital board.
He was elected to Cache Creek council again in 2011 and 2014. During his 2014 campaign he asked voters to “Keep common sense at the council table”, and Cache Creek mayor John Ranta says that Hofer ensured his decisions had an element of common-sense about them.
“He was the type of politician who didn’t speak a lot on every issue, so when he did speak people listened. He was very focused on his fellow politicians making good decisions, and spoke well and passionately on the subjects he chose.”
As a former businessman he brought a business perspective to council, and strove to keep jobs in Cache Creek. “I am tired of the cliché ‘we must think outside the box’,” he said in 2011. “The time has come to look and see what is still ‘inside’ that box before the box is empty altogether.”
For the last few years Hofer recently served as the chair of the Landfill Advisory Committee, and was passionate about retaining jobs there and keeping the Cache Creek landfill open in an environmentally sensitive way. “Herb was a great spokesperson for that,” says Ranta.
Although he did not belong to any formal organizations in Cache Creek, Hofer was always willing to lend a helping hand. “I am always there when help is needed, whether it is a lawn in summer, a driveway in the winter, or transportation to appointments,” he said in 2014. “I do what I can, since one day I might need help too.”
Hofer enjoyed a variety of outdoor activities, and Ranta says he’ll miss the opportunity to see him at the golf course, or walking to the post office. “The whole community is sad about his passing. When someone has lived in a place for so long he becomes an important part of it, and his death has punched a large hole in our community.”