Cover photo for Dennis Wayne Hochgraber's Obituary
Dennis Wayne Hochgraber Profile Photo
1952 Dennis 2021

Dennis Wayne Hochgraber

October 14, 1952 — September 29, 2021

Dennis Wayne Hochgraber was born on October 14, 1952 in Quincy, IL, the son of Virgil and Ramona Hochgraber. He married Debra Hastings on August 5, 1972. She lives in their home in Little River - Academy, TX. Jesus carried him to his mansion in glory on September 29 while Debra and the girls were praying the Lord's Prayer over him.

Surrendering to the call of God at age 17, he immediately began serving, first at Hoffman Estates Baptist in IL and Highland Baptist as youth minister. Then he faithfully pastored 4 churches; Highland Baptist, Arlington, TX, Parkside Baptist, Denison, TX, Shiloh Terrace Baptist, Dallas, TX and Pathways Fellowship, Mesquite, TX.

He was referred to by many as a teacher-preacher. He made God's Word come alive while helping you know how to transfer it from words to action. God's gifts within him were on full display as he performed weddings and funerals and visited with families in hospitals. Retiring in July, 2020, after 50 years of ministry, he and Debra moved away from the metroplex to have room for the workshop he had dreamed of having on his own property. He could more easily work on and store the classic Ford Broncos he enjoyed so much. They joined Taylor's Valley Baptist Church, where he continued to serve as the Lord led. The last weekend before he became ill, he helped build a stage for the youth building, attended a Saturday gospel concert, taught the lesson Sunday for a new class he was beginning and was part of a meeting of a planning team of the church.

Dennis was an encourager, a faithful friend. His response to "How are you?" was "I'm blessed." His departure greeting – often "Merry Christmas." He flashed a warm smile and had eyes that twinkled and teared at just the right times. Dennis opened his heart to all, but there was no doubt that he loved his family more than his own life. We had a conversation recently when he spoke passionately about how grateful he was that all 5 of his grandchildren had trusted Jesus as their Savior. Their parents were helping them know how to walk with the Lord. He was confident that no matter the darkness that he was seeing spreading over our world, their futures were secure.

Thank you to all of those who prayed with us along his journey from his morning cup of coffee as he sat outside on the driveway the last time to grasping the hand of His Savoir.

Survivors include his wife of 49 years, Debra; 2 children, Deanna Reese (Wallace) of Rogers, TX; and Dori Brown (Jimmy) of Rockwall, TX; his mother, Ramona Hochgraber, Quincy, IL; 5 grandchildren, Alyssa Polnac, Wesley and Wyatt Reese, Carter and Maci Brown; sisters, Diane Ladd (Dan) of Westminster, CO, Lu Plunk (Steve) of Liberty, IL and a brother, Larry Hochgraber (Karen) of Quincy, IL; a niece, Danielle Ladd (Brian), 4 nephews, Tyler Reed (Lhin), David Hochgraber (Lindsey), Matthew Hochgraber (Abbie) and Thomas Hochgraber (Serena).

Dennis was preceded in death by his father, Virgil, on July 14, 2015.

Services will be held at Taylor's Valley Baptist Church
2497 W FM 93, Temple, TX 76502

Sunday, October 3
5:00-7:00 pm

Monday, October 4
11:00 am

Flowers can be ordered from Precious Memories Florist, Temple, TX 254-778-2242. They have been asked to deliver them to the church on Sunday between 1:00 – 3:00 pm.
In lieu of flowers, the family has suggested that you could make a donation to the Children's Center Building Fund at Taylor's Valley Baptist Church, 2497 W FM 93, Temple, TX 76502
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Dennis Wayne Hochgraber, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Sunday, October 3, 2021

5:00 - 7:00 pm (Central time)

Taylor's Valley Baptist Church

2497 W Farm To Market 93, Temple, TX 76502

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Funeral Service

Monday, October 4, 2021

Starts at 11:00 am (Central time)

Taylor's Valley Baptist Church

2497 W Farm To Market 93, Temple, TX 76502

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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