Latest obituaries

Jerry Lynn Sharick

sharick_jerry2Jerry Lynn Sharick, of St. Johns, Michigan, loving husband, father, grandfather, brother, uncle and dear friend to many, died of complications from cancer treatments on November 24, 2014 at the age of 69.

Jerry was born in St. Johns, March 18, 1945 to Kathryn (Miller) and Milton Sharick. Jerry graduated from St. Johns High School in 1963 and continued his education at Ferris State University and Lansing Community College, becoming a journeyman tool and die maker. Through his career, Jerry co-owned Olympian Tool in St. Johns, MI; Ovid Machine and Tool in Ovid, MI; and Modern Machine in St. Johns, MI. He was an avid outdoorsman who loved hunting and fishing, and loved to share his passion with his grandchildren, nieces and nephews.

Jerry also played competitive fast-pitch softball for many years. He loved to travel and with his wife and other friends spent time in Costa Rica, North and South Carolina, Florida and the southern tier of states, Arkansas, Alaska, Maine and the Maritime Provinces of Canada.

Jerry married the love of his life, Diane Evitts on August 6, 1966, and she survives him. He is also survived by daughter, Kirstin Wright and grandson Hunter, of St. Johns, MI; daughter Stacey Baker (Jeff) and grandchildren Brittany, Tristan, Hailee, Sebastian and Tanner Baker of Hickory Corners, MI; brother Morris (Viola) Sharick of St. Johns, MI; sister Carol (Lorne) Rideout of Exeter, Ontario, Canada; sisters-in-law Dorothy Cornwell of St. Johns; Darlene (Doug) Hufnagel of Ovid; Deb (Rick) Louchart of Lakeland FL; brothers-in-law Dale (Judy) Evitts of Middleton, MI and Don Johnson of Lansing MI. Jerry leaves behind 18 nieces and nephews; 33 great nieces and nephews; and a great, great niece and nephew. Jerry was preceded in death by his parents, his mother and father in-law, Marvin and Ellomae Evitts; his sister-in-laws, Denise (Kit) Barclay and Dolores Johnson; and brothers-in-law, Don Evitts, Terry Cornwell and Richard Adams.

A memorial service will be held 11:00 AM Saturday, November 29, 2014 at Keck-Coleman Funeral Home, St. Johns with Pastor Lee Miller officiating. The family will receive relatives and friends 2:00 to 8:00 PM Friday, November 28, 2014 and on Saturday 10:00 until service time at the funeral home. The family suggests memorial gifts to support Area 28 Mid-Michigan Special Olympics or the charity of your choice.


Rev. Robert McKeon

mckeon_robertFather Robert McKeon, age 89, died on Monday, November 24, 2014 at his home in Byron. He was a Roman Catholic Priest in the Lansing, Michigan, Diocese. He was born September 18, 1925 in Rhinelander, Wisconsin, the third son of Mark Gregory McKeon and Mary Ellen Hogan McKeon. He attended grade school in Waukesha, Wisconsin and Linden, Michigan. He graduated from the Ladysmith Wisconsin High School in June 1944, and entered the United States Navy the same month. He served as a signalman aboard an LST ship in the Western Pacific until the end of World War II, and was discharged in June 1946. He attended college at the University of Wisconsin in Ladysmith, Wisconsin and the College of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota. He began studies for the priesthood in 1949 and attended seminaries in Grand Rapids and Detroit, Michigan and in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Father Bob was ordained at the Lansing Cathedral on June 6, 1959 and celebrated his first mass at St. John’s Parish, Fenton, in the fieldstone church that his grandfather, Frank McKeon, helped build.

mckeon2He served as an assistant pastor at parishes in Jackson, Flint, Lansing and Fenton. He became a pastor at St. Isadore Parish in Laingsburg. He served as pastor of St. Francis of Assisi Parish in Flint, at St. Pius Parish in Flint, and at St. Mary’s Parish in Mount Morris. He retired in 1997 and moved to his home in Byron. After retiring, he served as sacramental celebrant in St. Joseph’s Parish in Gaines until November 2014. In addition to his parish service, Father Bob was Chaplain for the Daughters of Isabella and for the Divorced and Separated Catholics of Flint and in the Michigan Prison system.

Father Bob was preceded in death by his parents and his two brothers, Leo Gregory and Reverend William James, and by his cousin William Donovan Mandeville who was raised in Father Bob’s household and with whom Father Bob was as close as a brother. He is survived by three nephews, seven grand-nieces and nephews, and many cousins.

Father Bob traveled much of the world from the Western Pacific to Ireland and Italy. He crisscrossed North America by car. He felt at home anywhere in Wisconsin or Michigan, but his family’s farm on the Shiawassee River west of Linden was the place on earth dearest to him.

Father Bob loved God. He loved God’s Church, despite its flaws. He loved his family and multitude of relatives despite our flaws. He loved his parishioners. And he loved his dogs, all of them, one after another, over 89 years, and regarded them as flawless.

Father Bob’s funeral mass will be celebrated at 1:30 PM on Saturday, November 29, 2014 at St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church, 600 N. Adelaide St., Fenton and he will be buried in the St. John Cemetery with his family. Bishop Earl Boyea celebrant and other priests of the diocese con-celebrating. A wake will be held 2-4 and 6-9 PM Friday with a 7:00 PM Vigil service being followed by a Knights of Columbus memorial Service at the church. Online tributes may be shared on the obituaries page of www.sharpfuneralhomes.com. Those desiring may make contribution to Children’s Tumor Foundation, St. Luke N.E.W. Life Center, North End Soup Kitchen or The Seeing Eye dogs.


Cloyce Kochensparger

kochensparger_cloyceCloyce Kochensparger, age 89, of Ashley, died Saturday, November 22, 2014, at Grace Haven Assisted Living in St. Johns.

Cloyce was born in Washington Township near Ashley on June 21, 1925, the son of Harley and Anna (Gott) Kochensparger. He married Erma Shepherd who preceded him in death in 1962 He married Lelah Willoughby on February 9, 1963 in Chapin. She preceded him in death on October 20, 2008. He worked at Federal Mogul in St. Johns for over 42 years as well as farming the farm where he was born, raised, and lived throughout his life.

Cloyce had a real love of God, family, and serving in the church. Throughout the years he had taught Sunday School, conducted Wednesday night meetings, filled in for the pastor when he was gone, and comforting people with services in local nursing homes. He also loved woodworking and his horses. He had the heavy machinery to make harnesses. He also made dressers for all of his grandchildren as wedding presents in advance.

Cloyce is survived by his children; Ruth Kochensparger of Ashley, David (Julie) Kochensparger of St. Johns, and John (Cathy) Kochensparger of St. Johns; 4 grandchildren; and 3 great grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents; and his brother, Carl Kochensparger.

Funeral services will be 10:30 Monday, November 24, at the East Washington Church, with Pastor Jerry Drummond and Pastor Jeff Reser officiating. Interment will follow in North Star Cemetery. Visitation will be 2-4 and 6-8 pm, Sunday, November 23, at the Barden Funeral Home in Ithaca.


Evelyn J. (Lockwood) Hrncharik

hrncharik_evelynEvelyn J. (Lockwood) Hrncharik, age 88, of St. Johns, MI passed away Saturday, November 22, 2014 at Grace Haven Assisted Living, St. Johns, MI.

Funeral Services will be held at Smith Family Funeral Homes St. Johns, MI on Tuesday, November 25, 2014 at 11:00 A.M., with Pastor Mona Kindel officiating. Burial will take place at Oak Grove Cemetery St. Louis, MI. Visitation will be held on Monday, November 24, 2014 from 2-8 P.M. with family present from 2-4 and 6-8 P.M. at the funeral home.

Evelyn was born in St. Louis, Michigan on May 26, 1926, the daughter of Harry and Anna (Clegg) Franks. On February 2, 1952 Evelyn married Amos C. Lockwood. Evelyn was a waitress at Tarpoffs Restaurant in Lansing for 17 years; she also was a hostess for the Automobile Club at the Jack Tar Hotel and worked at the City Club in Lansing for a few years, before retiring and moving to St. Johns, Michigan. Evelyn and Amos farmed 60 acres of fruit and vegetables that they sold to Beck’s Farm Market. She was a wonderful cook; she enjoyed cooking for her family and many friends. Amos died on April 14, 1999. On November 17, 2000 Evelyn married John Hrncharik in St. Johns, Michigan. They enjoyed traveling and casino trips together. John predeceased her on November 20, 2010. Evelyn volunteered at St. Vincent’s in St. Johns for 10 years. She loved polka dances, sewing, quilting and crocheting. She was a member of St. Joseph Catholic Church St. Johns, MI.

She is survived by 2 daughters; Glenda and Rex Ernst of St. Johns, MI, Donna and Bob Rummer of Hillman, MI, grandchildren; Garret and Alice Ernst of Perry, MI, Derek and Angie Ernst of Gilberts, IL, Matthew and Rebbecca Ernst of St. Johns, MI, Lori Semans of Muskegon, MI, Julie and Scott Allen of Ithaca, MI, Molly and Adam Burhans of Clare, MI. She is also survived by 14 great grandchildren; Carl, Claire and Cami Ernst, Jacob and Katelyn Ernst, Michael and Julianna Ernst, Keeghan, Kennedee and Kerrigan Semans, Zach and Jacob Allen, Jalyn and Jace Burhans and 2 sisters; JoAnn Safranski and Virginia “Ginny” and Don Plaxton, brother in law Harold McJilton. She is also survived by many nieces, nephews, 4 step-daughters and many step-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her parents, her husbands, 1 brother and sister in law, Hugh and Kay Franks and 1 sister, Margaret McJilton

Memorials may be made to Hospice Advantage, 801 South Waverly Suite 304 Lansing, MI. The family is being served by Smith Family Funeral Homes St. Johns, Michigan.


Lloyd D. Duquette

duquette_lloyd2Lloyd D. Duquette died Friday, November 21, 2014 at the age of 72. He was born February 2, 1942 in Pittsburgh, PA the son of Lloyd Sr. and Kathryn (Gibson) Duquette. Lloyd was a member of St. John’s Lutheran Church and enjoyed woodworking. He was a retired salesman for Burton Mixer and Manufacturing, Inc. in St. Johns. On September 8, 1973 he married Jean Schulte and she survives him.

Also surviving are two sons, Lloyd Scott (Brenda) Duquette of Lambertville, MI and Todd Alan (Sandy) Duquette of Maumee, OH; one granddaughter, Ashley Marie Duquette; two sisters and three brothers. He was preceded in death by his parents.

A memorial service will be held 11:00 AM Monday, November 24, 2014 at St. John’s Lutheran Church 511 E. Sturgis, St. Johns, MI 48879 with Rev. Dr. Bryan Salminen officiating. Memorials may be made to St. John’s Lutheran Church Building Fund. The family was assisted with these arrangements by Keck-Coleman Funeral Home, St. Johns.


Karl J. Armstrong

armstrong_karlKarl J. Armstrong died Friday, November 21, 2014 at the age of 76. He was born May 6, 1938 in Lansing, MI the son of Carl and Laberta Armstrong. Karl was an Air Force veteran and a long time member of the Fraternal Order of Eagles, Aerie # 3541 in Harrison, MI. He was also very active in the Loyal Order of Moose, Lodge #2235 in Harrison, where he served as Administrator for eight years. Karl retired from General Motors (Fisher Body) in 1991 and he loved to play golf. On May 6, 1958 he married Wiltse Stone and she survives him.

Also surviving are three daughters, Debra (Robert) Ruthruff, Jamie (Allen) Boettger, and Pamela (Jody) Peters all of St. Johns; one son, Karl Richard (Janel) Armstrong of CO; nine grandchildren; four great grandchildren; two brothers, Richard (Nancy) Armstrong of FL and Robert (Sherry) Armstrong of Harrison, MI; several beloved sisters and brothers-in-law from Oklahoma; many nieces and nephews and his loving dog, Cleo. He was preceded in death by his parents, one beloved daughter, Karen Hall and two sisters, Lillian and Brenda.

A memorial service will be held 1:00 PM Tuesday, November 25, 2014 at Keck-Coleman Funeral Home, St. Johns with Pastor Andy Croel officiating. Military Honors will be provided by the St. Johns Honor Guard. The family will receive relatives and friends 6:00 to 8:00 PM on Monday, November 24 at the funeral home. Memorials may be made to Mooseheart Child City and School, Inc. Mooseheart, IL 60539.


Mark Louis Fox

fox_markMark Louis Fox passed away on Thursday, November 20, 2014, at the age of 96. He was born in Fowler, on April 23, 1918, the son of Urban and Dorothy (Feldpausch) Fox. He married Marie Rehmann on July 26, 1943 in St. Johns, MI, and she preceded him in death on December 12, 2010.

Surviving Mark are his children, Don Fox, Bob Fox, Dianne (Patrick Mullins) Fox, Beth (Terry) Kret, and Michael Fox; grandchildren, Nicole, Amy, and Sara Adams, Marcus, Jennifer and Andrew Kret, Mark Fox, Joe Mullins and Ann Mullins, great grandchildren, Stella Kraus and Cooper Kret; brothers, John (Shirley) Fox and Louis Fox; step-brothers and sisters, Rosemary (Gideon) Marsal, Jim (Bernie) Fox, Marvin (Sue) Fox, Clare (Nancy) Fox and Marlene (Larry) Kreiger, and sisters-in-law, Dorothy and Ione Fox. Preceding Mark in death along with his wife Marie, are daughter, Marilyn Adams, his parents, step-mother, Martha (Lenneman), siblings, Paul (Helen), Hugo (Lucille), Claude and Lloyd Fox. Mark especially engaged with small children and loved to tease and joke with neighbor kids and those of special friends. He even had 2 “adopted grandchildren” Carolyn and Madi whose grandpas had passed away.

fox_mark2Mark attended Holy Trinity School. At the age of 14 his mother passed away and he left high school to work at home helping care for his father and six brothers. In 2004 Fowler Board of Education awarded Mark a Fowler High School Diploma. In 1939 and 1940, Mark completed flying lessons at Davis Field in Lansing and, with his buddy Larry Motz, purchased a Taylor Craft, 90 horse power 2-seater aircraft with fabric-covered wings and enjoyed flights over Clinton County and central Michigan. March 1941, World War II broke out and Mark was drafted to the US Army – the first person from Fowler.

fox_mark2Following extensive training, Sergeant Fox was assigned to the 92nd Signal Battalion and shipped to Europe in December 1943, where he worked to establish communication systems and operated switchboards as troops marched from Normandy through France, Germany, and Salzburg, Austria. Generals Patton and Eisenhower knew him by name because of his switchboard responsibilities. Throughout his life he recounted in great detail senses numbing details of things he witnessed during that time – including the hell he witnessed at Dachau concentration camp outside Munich, Germany. May 1945 Victory in Europe was declared and August 1945 Japan surrendered. Shortly thereafter he was honorably discharged and sent home for a joyous reunion with his wife Marie and his 13 month old son Don whom he got to meet for the first time. Mark was issued a “Thank-You-America” certificate from the French government for his role he played in liberating the country from Hitler’s armies.

For a couple years Mark worked for his father-in-law at Rehmann’s Clothing Store in Saint John’s. In 1947, the family moved to Fowler when Mark joined his brother Paul, where together they purchased Fox Implement, the International Harvester Company franchise owned by their father Urban, and Uncles Martin and Clements Fox. The business previously was known as Fox Brothers and was located in what today is the Dallas Township Fire station on South Main Street Fowler. The business was franchised to sell International Harvester tractors and farm machinery, Gehl farm equipment, Whirlpool appliances, and propane. In addition, Mark and Paul together worked a farm of 60 acres. In 1985 Paul and Mark sold the business and retired.

There was no higher priority in Mark’s life than his family. He attended kid’s ball games, organized Sunday visits to grandparents and cousin’s homes, picnics at Potter Park Zoo, vacations at Grandpa Rehmann’s cabin on Houghton Lake, and July 4th visits with relatives who lived in Stevensville, at Lake Michigan. He enjoyed hunting with his brothers, sons, and friends, in later years he played golf, and he especially like to play cribbage and found great pleasure winning a round of Euchre or Pinochle.

Mark was active in the community serving as Fowler Village Clerk, Post Commander of Veterans of Foreign War Post #3733 from 1951-1953, and was active in Knights of Columbus and served as an usher at Most Holy Trinity Church.

In their retirement years he and Marie spent winters in Mesa, AZ with many close friends from Clinton County, visiting children and grandchildren, and traveling to Great Britain, France, Germany, and Austria to visit sites he traveled through during WWII.

The Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10:30 a.m. on Monday, November 24, 2014, at Most Holy Trinity Catholic Church in Fowler with Fr. Dennis Howard presiding; burial to follow at Most Holy Trinity Cemetery. The family will receive friends on Sunday from 2-4 and 7-9 p.m., with a rosary being prayed at 3 p.m., and a vigil service at 8 p.m. at the Goerge Chapel of Osgood Funeral Homes in Fowler. Military Services will be provided by VFW Post #3733.

For years Dad talked about the joy and challenge, the freedom and thrill of flying and seeing Fowler from the air. Six years ago, April 2008, on his 90th birthday, he went up with an instructor for a ride over Fowler in a single engine plane for the first time in 68 years. As Dad’s plane flew low and slow over rural central Michigan and the village of Fowler family and friends waved to him from the backyard and he was overcome with waves of joy and wonder and peace.

The song “Soar like an Eagle”, from the album “A voice cries out”, by Dianne Stough, says it all. “ . . . I’ll soar like an eagle . . . the Lord is my strength. He gives rest to the weary . . . and power to the weak. He fills my life with goodness . . . He blesses me with peace . . . He blesses me with peace.” Once again, Mark, Dad, Papa, Brother, Friend, Comrade may you soar like an eagle.

The family is being served by Osgood Funeral Homes.


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