May 4, 1941 – May 4, 2019
Becky Hoffman, in the course of her career a teacher, medical reporter, drummer and tour guide, passed away at Emory University Hospital on May, 4, 2019, surrounded by family. In the circle of her life — it was her 78th birthday — was boundless energy, exuberance, generosity and love. Born Rebecca Annette on May 4, 1941, to Evelyn and Charles Hoffman, a Mobile attorney, Becky was raised in a vibrant, close-knit family with big sister Sherrell, and younger siblings Robbie and Roy. Athletic and sociable, with the lifelong gift of treasured friends, Becky grew up playing ball with the kids on her Williams Court block, dancing jitterbug in the living room, skiing on Mobile Bay, Sabbath services at Springhill Avenue Temple, and cheerleading at Murphy High, class of 1959. At Newcomb College of Tulane University, an American Studies major and AEPhi, graduating in 1963, Becky was a Tulane cheerleader. She maintained that spirited vitality throughout her life. That same year she married Marc Peterzell, a Tulane law student. After a stint in Manhattan, the couple rooted into Atlanta where Marc practiced law and Becky, with a Master of Education from Georgia State, taught at the university and drove the Georgia Art Bus statewide, engaging students about art. With daughter Lezlee, born in 1968, and son Scott, 1970, the Peterzells’ colorful, Northwest Atlanta home was brimming with family and community life. Soon a drum set was in the house, too. In her conviction that people should not just dream but seize their ambitions, Becky found an Atlanta symphony percussionist to instruct her, and the Becky Peterzell Trio, Becky on drums, played nightspots. In her desire to help and communicate to others, she joined Atlanta’s WXIA, producing the Medical Minute, an award-winning TV segment, with legions of viewers responding to information on health issues. After her years of married life, on her own again, she started a new venture — travel. Polynesia, Southeast Asia, the Middle East, Mediterranean — first solo, then with companions, Becky saw the world, always returning to her beloved mom and dad in Mobile, nurturing them through their late years, and adding New York City as a place called home. She became a sought-after tour guide, both in New York and on trips out west to the National Parks. Wherever she roamed, her cell phone buzzed constantly from her adoring circle, each person calling her “my best friend,” and a new generation of family — her four grandchildren, nieces and nephews — turning to her for advice, wisdom, inspiration, and her big, warm embrace. “I’ve had a wonderful life,” she said on the last day of her 77th year, “I just want more of it.” To those who held her close she gave her tender, and expansive, mandate: “When I’m not here, you go, you do, for me.” Becky’s survivors: her daughter Lezlee Peterzell-Bellanich (Rob), and their children, River and Skye, of Nyack, New York; her son Scott Peterzell (Amy), their children, Zoe and Griffin, of Atlanta; sister Robbie Hoffman Nadas, her children Marisa Nadas (Lis), their children Tella and Wren, and Robbie’s son Sandro Nadas (Amanda), nephew Aaron Grean (son of Sherrell Hoffman and Charles Grean, deceased); brother Roy Hoffman (Nancy), and their daughter, Meredith Hoffman. Graveside services, Thursday, May 9, 2019 at 2:00pm, Springhill Avenue Temple Cemetery, 841-865 Owens St., Mobile, AL, 36604. In lieu of flowers, donations of choice, or Emory University Winship Cancer Institute, Atlanta. Arrangements by Radney Funeral Home, Mobile
- Becky’s survivors: her daughter Lezlee Peterzell-Bellanich (Rob), and their children, River and Skye, of Nyack, New York; her son Scott Peterzell (Amy), their children, Zoe and Griffin, of Atlanta; sister Robbie Hoffman Nadas, her children Marisa Nadas (Lis), their children Tella and Wren, and Robbie’s son Sandro Nadas (Amanda), nephew Aaron Grean (son of Sherrell Hoffman and Charles Grean, deceased); brother Roy Hoffman (Nancy), and their daughter, Meredith Hoffman.
- Graveside Service Thursday, May 9, 2019