COL D. Lyle Hohnstine Memorial Foundation
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About Lyle

David Lyle Hohnstine was born June 11, 1951 in Short Hills, New Jersey and graduated from Millburn High School in 1969. While in high school he was an honor athlete, lettering in football, basketball, and track. He met his sweetheart, Elspeth Gardam, at church in 1967. After graduation, he enlisted and was selected to attend West Point Prep for the year, receiving an appointment to the United States Military Academy where he graduated in 1974. He attended the Armed Forces Staff College in Norfolk, Virginia, earned a Master’s Degree in Logistics Management from the Florida Institute of Technology, and attended the Army War College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania.

Military Career

Following his commissioning, Lyle joined the Quartermaster Corps, where he served with distinction at postings around the world, including Operation Just Cause and the first invasion of Iraq.

His military decorations and recognitions include:

  • Meritorious Service Medal with five Oak Leaf Clusters
  • Defense Meritorious Service Medal   
  • Army Commendation Medal with five Oak Leaf Clusters
  • Army Achievement Medal with one Oak Leaf Cluster Meritorious Unit Commendation
  • National Defense Service Medal (2nd Award)
  • Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal
  • Southwest Asia Service Medal with 2 Bronze Stars (BSS)
  • Humanitarian Service Medal
  • Army Service Ribbon
  • Overseas Service Ribbon (4th Award)
  • Multinational Force and Observers Medal
  • Kuwait Liberation Medal
  • Army Staff Identification Badge
  • Order of Saint George
  • Order of Saint Martin
  • Order of St. Barbara

After more than 25 years of service, Lyle retired from the military in August 1999 as a full bird Colonel and joined MBH Settlement Group as the firm’s Chief of Services for Logistics and Administration.


Lyle and Elspeth were married on June 8, 1974. While stationed in Colorado, Lyle and Elspeth celebrated the birth of their son, David Lyle, Jr. on December 13, 1975. The new family moved to Munich, Germany, where their daughter, Christa Nicole joined them on April 26, 1977.

The next year, tragically, Lyle Jr. passed away. Daughter Ashley Gail was born July 28, 1980 while the family served at Fort Lee, Virginia. As Christa and Ashley grew up, Lyle loved teaching them sports and going to games, taking them skiing in the Alps, and helping with math homework.

The family grew again in 2003, when Christa married Jamie Abbott, and in 2004 when Ashley married Andrew Combs. Lyle and Elspeth were overjoyed when granddaughters Mackenzie and Elspeth Ann were born a year later. His new role as “GP” was a perfect fit for Lyle, who loved playing with the girls and making waffles for them.


Lyle loved the game of golf. He was a member of Bear Trap Dunes Golf Club in Ocean View, Delaware and served on the Board there. He was a founding member of Bayside Golf Club in Fenwick Island, DE. Lyle played regularly wherever he went and enjoyed Club tournaments and events, but his greatest joy in the game was to simply be out on the course with his friends, old and new.

Lyle will be remembered for his generosity, compassion, love of country and selfless devotion to family, friends, and community. He had an indomitable desire to help other people and seized upon every opportunity to take charge and make positive things happen. He did so with energy and strength throughout his life. His family and friends returned his love and devotion, and will remember him as an example of service and a life well-lived.