Helen Hoffer, who together with her husband, Robert Hoffer, co-founded Hoffer Plastics Corp., died on April 25. She was 95.
They met at Purdue University and got married. She supported her husband as he moved 13 times as a resin company executive.
In 1953, the husband-wife-team began molding twist sticks for roll-on deodorant on a second-hand molding machine located in a tiny building. Helen and her husband worked side-by-side molding and assembling the parts — 250,000 of them.
Robert Hoffer, a chemist, worked in the resin industry. He called on Nylon Molded Products Corp., an Ohio molder, and executives there supported Hoffer to go into business. Hoffer Plastics began in South Elgin, the hometown of Helen. Her father, who ran a drugstore, helped them find the first building.
Robert Hoffer died in 2007.
Still family owned, Hoffer Plastics has sales of $75 million and employs about 350. The company has donated millions of dollars to schools, community groups and charities and the plastics industry, through the Hoffer Foundation.
In 1960, the Hoffers purchased 24 acres of land for a headquarters factory, which has steadily expanded over the years.