Eleanor Hoover Profile Photo
1937 Eleanor 2019

Eleanor Hoover

December 3, 1937 — March 9, 2019

Eleanor Hoover, 81, of Atlantic, Iowa, passed away Saturday, March 9, 2019, at Methodist Hospital in Omaha, NE.

Eleanor (aka Big E) was born December 3, 1937, in Mills County, IA, to Max S. and Thelma Faye (Hurst) Benton. She grew up in Mills County and graduated from Malvern High School in 1955. She continued to live in the Mills County area near her family and loved to ride horses, barrel race, and attend rodeos with her dad – she attended the Sidney, IA, rodeo for years. She later met and married Billy O. Hoover on January 13, 1966, in Omaha, NE, and they made their home in Atlantic.

Eleanor’s work life included stints with the Mills County ASC, Atlantic Employment Office, Atlantic Police Department, Garst & Thomas Seed Company, Iowa Western Community College, and Wheelers Farm Supply. But her real passion (besides Bill and John Wayne) was being a mom to her three daughters, being a grand and great-grandmother, and taking other folks under her wing. Big E had a zeal for life and didn’t know a stranger, and she had a way about her that caught people’s attention – especially later on when she used a golf club as a walking cane (and possible attitude adjuster) and could be caught saying she was still kicking just not as high.

She was a member of the Presbyterian Church, a founding member of the AtlanticFest Committee and the Atlantic School Booster Club, as well as serving on the Park Board, the Chamber, and various other organizations. Big E loved horses and was a member of the American Quarter Horse Association, the Girl’s Rodeo secretary, and served for years with the horse department for the Cass County Fair as well as spending many years announcing the annual horse show during Fair week. Big E’s voice was also heard over the loud speaker for over 25 years announcing softball games in Marne on Sundays. She was also instrumental in organizing the Scrooge contest every year raising money for the Atlantic Food Pantry. Folks around town often commented that no one could tell Big E no when she came asking for something. Eleanor was very passionate about her volunteer work with 4-H, the Atlantic School System, the YMCA, community events, and many other worthwhile endeavors. Eleanor received a Volunteer of the Year award for her community work with the Chamber. She received recognition for over 60 years working with 4-H and was inducted into the Iowa 4-H Hall of Fame in 2014. In 2018, she was honored and recognized for over 50 years of volunteer service at the high school, and she was recently presented the Home Town Hero award by Modern Woodmen for her work and impact in the community.

She was preceded in death by her parents, and her husband Bill.

Eleanor is survived by her daughters, Lori (Mark) Christianson, Billie Hoover (friend Terry Hoskins-Anita) and Jackie (Andre) Sampson all of Atlantic, IA; grandchildren, Jessica (Tyler) Sandbothe of Griswold, IA, Zachary Christianson and fiancé Katy Kuiper of Atlantic, IA, and Cole and Alex Sampson of Atlantic, IA; great-grandchildren, Cooper, Levi and Wesley Sandbothe of Griswold, IA; brothers, Raburn (Dixie) Benton of Lincoln, NE and Roger (Kathy) Benton of Mesa, AZ, nieces, nephews, special friends: Mike/Patti Waters, Dave/Karen Miller, and John/Tammy Sheard, as well as a host of friends.

Visitation will be held Sunday, March 24 , 2019, from 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. with memorial services immediately following at 1:00 p.m. at the Atlantic High School, Atlantic, IA.

Memorials may be made to the family for designation to some of Big E’s favorite causes.

Hockenberry Family Care in Atlantic, IA, is in charge of the arrangements.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Eleanor Hoover, please visit our flower store.


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