Mack (Elam) Hodge Jr. a member of the Cherokee Nation, born on July 06, 1933 in Indian Territory, Sands Springs, Tulsa Oklahoma, passed away peacefully at home on June 17, 2021.
After leaving Indian Territory with his parents he and his siblings grew up picking fruits and vegetables seasonally from Arizona to Washington, ultimately landing in Vacaville, CA working the Gnos Family Farm and Cattle with his friend Ernie Gnos.
Mack joined the US Army at 19, with friends from the Vacaville HS Baseball Team. He served from 1953-1956 as a Combat Medic during the Korean War, with the 82nd Airborne Division, ironic because he strongly despised flying, but earned his Parachute Badge, none-the-less. Upon returning to the United States, he received the National Defense Service Medal and an Honorable Discharge. At that time, the US Army listed his main civilian occupation as a Baseball Player, which he continued in some fashion after his discharge.
Mack loved playing and officiating sports, as well as hunting and fishing throughout the western United States. He enjoyed playing fast-pitch softball for Stornetta’s Dairy and Wilson-Russell Ford. He also loved our huge family gatherings and playing cards or games with all his siblings, their spouses and all his many nieces and nephews. It was always fun, and never a dull moment when the Hodge family was all together. He was also known as someone who was a fiercely protective dad, son, brother and friend.
Mack worked at Kaiser Steel and Mare Island Naval Shipyard until retiring in 1988. After retiring he moved to Loyalton, CA. and later to Wellington, NV, to be near to his brother Tom and his wife Charlotte. He spent his final years living with family in Arizona.
Mack was predeceased by his parents, his sisters Sis and Carey, and brothers Nick and Bill. He is survived by his three children, Jeff Hodge and Daughter In Law Julie (Solis) of Marana, Arizona, Stacie (Hodge) and son-in-law Lynn Freeman, and Pat Hodge and daughter-in-law Renee (Lewis) all of Napa, CA. His Grandchildren Jessica Rittenhouse, Janelle Mendoza and Jackson Hodge, Matthew and Michael Booth, and Thomas Hodge, Morgan Russell and Jonathan Hodge, their spouses and 15 Great grandchildren. He is also survived by his siblings, Tom, Susan, Beatrice, Wanda, Lillian, Frank, Dean, Lana and Patsy.
Interment will be held on Monday, June 28th, 2021 at the Arizona Veteran’s Memorial Cemetery of Marana, Arizona, with full Military Honors.
The family wishes to thank Emblem Hospice of Tucson for their outstanding care and compassion for our Dad. Whether you were friend or family, our stories of Mack will always reflect him as being larger than life.