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Archive | Obituary

MARY JANE HARPER


Mary Jane “Janie” Harper, age 72, of Rockford, MI passed away on Tuesday, January 15, 2019 at her home surrounded by her loving family. She was born April 9, 1946 to John and Evelyn (Shears) Nagelhout in Ensley Center, MI. She was a very devoted and dedicated mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and friend. Janie was an excellent cook and loved to share her food with everyone. Surviving are her husband of 37 ½ years Darold Harper; children, Teresa (Tim) Boehm, Tanya (Rick) Sevey, Todd (Mary) Hall, Trever (Ann) Hall, Cathy (Scott) Hayden, Craig (Valerie) Harper, David Harper and Lori (Patrick) Bielecki; brother, John (Delores) Nagelhout; sister, Roxanne (Paul) Wilson; 23 grandchildren and 34 great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her parents and sister and brother-in-law, Sharon and Harm Daling. The family will greet friends Friday from 4-7 p.m. and Saturday from 2 p.m. until time of service at 3:00 p.m. at the Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs. Pastor Chuck Smith officiating. In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made to Heartland Hospice.

Arrangements by Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs

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MICHAEL FLANNAGIN SR.


Michael Flanagin Sr., 73, of Cedar Springs, passed away on January 14, 2019 at his home. He was born on February 26, 1945, in Grand Haven, MI, the son of Dewain and Ella (Mason) Flanagin. Mike attended Alden Elementary School and Mancelona Public Schools until enlisting in the military. From 1962-1965 Mike served in the U.S. Army. In the 3 years in the military, one year was in Korea. While in Korea, he drove the mail carrier. He was also a marksman sharpshooter. Mike worked at the Sparta Foundry for 26 years and retired in 1991. Mike loved being outside and working on cars and was always willing to help his friends and neighbor’s. He enjoyed going to Mancelona, MI to spend time with his siblings and visiting with his lifelong friends, the Windish family. He loved spending time with his grandchildren and loved his family very much. Mike was always there for them when they needed him. He is survived by his wife of 53 years, Sandra Flanagin (Brown); 4 children, Michael (Tina) Flanagin Jr., Daniel (Angie) Flanagin, Kimberly (Jim) Flanagin, Kristy (Bruce) Flanagin; 5 grandchildren, Michael Flanagin IV, Jason (Becka) Flanagin, Brittany Flanagin, Fawna Flanagin, John Dietz; great-grandson Michael Flanagin the 5th; brother Frank (Cindy) Flanagin, sister Esther Grody and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents; two brothers, Dewain and Charles Flanagin, and two grandsons, Michael III and John Flanagin. Funeral services will take place on Saturday, January 19 at 12 noon at the Mancelona Chapel of Mortensen Funeral Homes with Pastor Ross Corne officiating. Visitation will be from 11 a.m. until the time of services on Saturday. Military honors will be held immediately following services at the funeral home. Burial will take place in Fairview Cemetery, Mancelona in the spring when weather permits. Memorial contributions may be made to the American Cancer Society.

Arrangements have been handled by the Mancelona Chapel of Mortensen Funeral Homes. Please visit his online guestbook www.mortensenfuneralhomes.com.

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TONIA A. JONES


Tonia A. Jones, age 46, of Cedar Springs, died Sunday, January 6, 2019 at her home with her family by her side. Tonia was born April 19, 1972 in Grant, MI the daughter of Gary and Gloria (Annable) Moore. She graduated from Central High School, Grand Rapids and was the office manager at Fox Motors GMC & Buick on Alpine Avenue. She enjoyed crocheting, knitting, traveling, cruises, and music. She had been a member of the Sweet Adelines. She had a big heart and was everyone’s strength. She was very positive and had a constant faith in the good of people. She had an ability to forgive and forget. Surviving are her husband, Ted Jones; daughter, Felicia Jones; mother, Gloria Rayman; parents-in-law, Theodore Jones, Sr, Leona Rusco; brothers, Tony Moore, Troy Herbert; brother-in-law, Trevor (Missy) Jones; sister-in-law, Shannon Braun; grandparents, Marge Rusco, Ethel Bristol Gilbert; nieces and nephews; her pugs, Porkchop and Beans. A celebration of life will be held Saturday, January 26 from 1-5 p.m. at the Sparta Eagles, 186 E. Division St, Sparta. 

Arrangements by Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs.

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HELENE BOWERS


Helene Bowers, age 75, of Howard City passed away January 7, 2019 at her residence.   She was born February 5, 1943 in Howard City the daughter of Howard and Gail (Lewis) Bowers. She worked at Keeler Brass for twenty one years and Wolverine for several years. She also helped at the Rustic Sport shop for many years. Helene loved to walk, bake, and was always willing and ready to help family members out with their children. She was a member of the Bethel Lutheran Church. In 1970 she married Jerry who survives. Also surviving are one son, Dwight of Eaton Rapids; brothers Howard (Bud), Darlene Bowers of Luther, Ronald (Jan) Bowers of Howard City; two sisters, Nina (William) Selleck of Cooks, Bonnie (Sam) Staude of VA; and many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents; a sister, Helen and a brother, Charles Kent. Memorial services will take place on Thursday, January 10 at 11 a.m. at the Bethel Lutheran Church. The family will greet friends from 10 a.m. until time of services at 11 a.m.

Arrangements by Heckman Funeral Home, Howard City

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THOMAS G. MERLINGTON


Thomas G. Merlington, age 58, of Cedar Springs, died Saturday, January 5, 2019 at his home surrounded by his family. Tom was born December 21, 1960 in Grand Rapids, MI the son of Bruce and Martha (Grimes) Merlington. He served in the U.S Army and Army National Guard of Michigan for 23 years and worked for Ryder Truck for 38 years. Surviving are his wife, Debra; children, Melissa (Ryan) Bowling, Elizabeth (Jacob) D’Antuono, Bruce (Katelyn) Merlington, Toni Merlington, Kasey Merlington; 10 grandchildren; brothers, Terry Merlington, Walter (Nancy) Merlington; sister, Veronica (Rusty) Seaver. He was preceded in death by his parents; sisters, June Milzarski and Tammy Merlington. The family will greet friends Friday, January 11 from 2-4 and 6-8 p.m. at the Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs. There will be no funeral service. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital or Friends of the Michigan Veterans Home.

Arrangements by Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs

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RUTHANN NORTON


Ruthann Norton, age 74, of Rockford, died Thursday, January 3, 2019 at Mercy Health – St. Mary’s. Ruthann was born March 22, 1944 in Sparta, MI the daughter of Russell and Ruth (Metzger) Mead. She was a bus driver for Cedar Springs Public Schools for 35 years. She loved sports and always attended her kids events. She loved and accepted everyone. Surviving are her husband, John Norton Sr; children, Bob (Donna) Norton, John (Toni) Norton, Randy (Annette) Norton, Joel (Leah) Norton, Kelly (John) Wright; 25 grandchildren; 24 great-grandchildren; brother, Bob (Alondra) Mead; sisters, Jackie (Eugene) Denslow, Patsy (Rocky) Heiss; many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents; daughter-in-law, Tina Norton; sisters, Linda Kotchka and Marcia Mead. A memorial service and luncheon will be held Saturday, January 26, at 2:00 p.m. at the Pierson Bible Church Community Room. Pastor Chris Weeks officiating. Memorial contributions may be made to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital. 

Arrangements by Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs.

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VELMA LANGLAND


Velma “Val” Langland, age 76, of Cedar Springs, went to be with her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on Thursday, January 3, 2019 at Mercy Health – St. Mary’s, Grand Rapids. Val was born July 19, 1942 in Sault Ste. Marie, MI the daughter of John and Rosa (Rabineau) Laaksonen. She was well known for her cooking and baking. She enjoyed the Detroit Tigers, camping and her grandkids. She was very involved at her church, Rockford Springs Community Church, serving others and was a great prayer warrior. Surviving are her husband, Jack; children, Tom (Donna) Langland, Cathy Hoven; grandchildren, Steven Langland, Christopher Hoven, Anna Hoven; brothers, Wilfred Laaksonen, Albert Laaksonen, Raymond Laaksonen; sisters, Irene Soderblom, Elma Benedick, Delores Augustson; many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents; brother, Edward Laaksonen; sister, Bertha Danneberg. The family greeted friends Sunday, January 6 at the Rockford Springs Community Church, 5815 14 Mile Road, Rockford where the service was held Monday 11:00 a.m. Visitation began Monday 10:00 a.m. before the service. Pastor David VanderMeer officiating. Memorial contributions may be made to the American Cancer Society. 

Arrangements by Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs.

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JOANN C. HILLS

Joann C. Hills, age 81, of Sand Lake, passed away Thursday, January 3, 2019 at her home with her family by her side.

Mrs. Hills was born May 4, 1937 in Detroit, MI the daughter of James and Esther (Heil) Ayris. She worked for American Seating for 20 years and was a member of the Fraternal Order of Eagles. She was very involved and loved her church family at Resurrection Lutheran Church, Sand Lake. Surviving are her children, Debra Fifield, Jack Hills, Chris (Kathy) Hills; 6 grandchildren; 11 great-grandchildren; close friends, Dar Stebbins and Terri Fifield. She was preceded in death by her husband, Jack in 2001 and 2 brothers, Bill and Jim Ayris. Cremation has taken place.

A graveside service for family and friends will be held Tuesday, January 8 at 11:00 a.m. at Sand Lake Cemetery. Pastor Lee Zabrocki officiating. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Heartland Hospice, 3230 Eagle Park Dr. NE, Suite 200, Grand Rapids, MI 49525. 

Arrangements by Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs.

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ARWIN EDWARD BREMMER

Arwin Edward Bremmer, age 89, of Cedar Springs passed away Friday evening, December 28, 2018 from the results of a stroke. Arwin and Nancy (his wife of 68 years) are together again and at peace. Ed lived his whole life in Cedar Springs, except for the time he spent as a Corporal in the Army. He was part of the Medical Corp in southern Germany. While there Ed purchased the first of his many cameras. He became an avid photographer taking thousands of pictures of people and events. He particularly enjoyed photographing wild flowers on Drummond Island with his wife Nancy along. He loved everything about the outdoors, especially all the creatures of the woods. His knack for taming wild animals and birds was wonderful. He had a mischievous sense of humor and was fiercely competitive being a great athlete in his youth. Ed was an excellent debater often playing the devil’s advocate. His conversations and presence will be sorely missed by his family. Surviving are his children, Tim (Karen) Bremmer, Dean Bremmer, Molly (Jeffrey) Bayuk; grandchildren, Lisa (Bobby) Jackson, Ethan Bremmer, Bryan (Jennifer) Bremmer, Hillary Pierson, Benjamin Bayuk, and Spencer Bayuk; great-grandchildren, Kyle and Taylor Jackson; brothers, Rex (Kathy) Bremmer, and Arden (Denise) Bremmer; in-laws, Shirley Gumina, Fred (Carolee) Gunnell, John (Mayda) Gunnell, Camilla (John) Teusink; many nieces and nephews. The family greeted friends Wednesday, January 2, 2019 at the Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs. Interment Elmwood Cemetery, Cedar Springs. Memorial contributions may be made to a charity of your choice.

Arrangements by Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs

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STEVEN J. DeMULL


Steven J. DeMull, age 59, of Cedar Springs, died Sunday, December 23, 2018 at his home. Steve was born July 24, 1959 in Cedar Springs, MI the son of John and Helen (Crowley) DeMull. He loved his granddaughter, dogs, farming and tractors. Surviving are his wife of 28 years, Diane (Davis); son, Simon; granddaughter, Laney Furhman; mother, Helen DeMull; siblings; in-laws and their families. The family will greet friends Saturday, December 29, 2018 from 5-8 p.m. at the Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the MS Society.

Arrangements by Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs

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