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February 15, 2005


      RUBY JUNE AMOND, 69, of Wellston, died Friday, Feb. 11, 2005, at her residence.
      Memorial services will be conducted at 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 20, at the First Church of Wellston with Pastor Frank Deater officiating.
      The Terwilliger Funeral Home in Kaleva is in charge of arrangements.

      MARGARET LILLIAN BANKS, 91, formerly of Kalkaska, died Feb. 9, 2005, at Halifax Medical Center, Daytona Beach.
      A Celebration of Life will be held at Grace Episcopal Church in Port Orange, Fla., at 4 p.m. today, Feb. 15.
      Later this spring, Margaret will be remembered at a memorial service at The People's Church in Kalkaska. Interment will follow in the family plot at Evergreen Cemetery, Kalkaska. Dates and times of the Kalkaska memorial will be announced at a later date.
      Wolfe Funeral Home of Kalkaska is in charge of the arrangements.

      VELMA L. BATTERBEE, 91, of Central Lake, died Friday, Feb. 11, 2005, at Meadow Brook Medical Care Facility in Bellaire.
      Graveside services will be held in the spring.
      Arrangements are being handled by the Central Lake Chapel of Mortensen Funeral Homes.

      ELAINE RUTH JOHN, 87, of Suttons Bay, died Monday, Feb. 14, 2005, at her home.
      Arrangements are pending with Martinson Funeral Home, Suttons Bay.

      THELMA A. LUCKINO, 93, of Frankfort, died Monday, Feb. 14, 2005, at The Maples.
      A service will be held in Ohio.
      The Benzonia Chapel of McElduff Funeral Home and Cremation Service is handling the local arrangements.

      THE REV. H. DON SCHLEICHER, 89, of Traverse City, formerly of Central Lake, died Monday, Feb. 14, 2005, at the Grand Traverse Pavilions.
      Funeral services will take place at 11 a.m. Friday, Feb. 18, at the Central Lake Chapel of Mortensen Funeral Homes.
      Visitation will take place Thursday evening, Feb. 17, from 6 to 8 p.m., also at the funeral home.
      A complete obituary will appear in Wednesday's edition of the Traverse City Record-Eagle.

      BRUCE DOUGLAS WHITE, 79, of Traverse City, died Saturday, Feb. 12, 2005, at Birchwood Nursing Center.
      A full obituary will follow in a later edition of the Traverse City Record-Eagle.
      Arrangements are being handled by the Reynolds Jonkhoff Funeral Home.

      MICHAEL W. 'WOODY' WOOD, 34, of Traverse City, died Sunday, Feb. 13, 2005, at home.
      Friends may call Wednesday evening, Feb. 16, from 6 to 8 p.m. at Reynolds-Jonkhoff Funeral Home, Traverse City.
      Services will be held at 11 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 17, at Bethlehem Lutheran Church.
      A complete obituary will appear in the Wednesday edition of the Traverse City Record-Eagle.
Walter B. Abbott Jr.
Died February 12, 2005
      TRAVERSE CITY - Walter B. Abbott Jr., 75, died Feb. 12, 2005.
      Born in Muskegon on May 16, 1929, he was the son of the late Walter and Marian (Lindgren) Abbott. In 1952 he married Doris Leighton, who survives.
      Walt attended Carpenter Elementary School. He graduated from Shelby High School 1948 and from Michigan State University cum laude with a B.A. and a M.A. in Social Sciences. Throughout his career, Walt taught social studies and history, driver education, drove a school bus, and was the principal at Benzonia High School by the age of 30.
      He was an instructor at the University of Michigan, a representative for educational publishers for many years, was active in the Democratic Party his entire life and twice ran for the Michigan State Senate.
      Walt was the aide to Senator Gray, Federal Representative of the Michigan Department of Education, principal at Native American schools in Bark River and Mt. Pleasant, and taught Native Americans at Bay Mills Community College.
      Walt also wrote two short novels and published an article on the Northern Cheyenne Nation. In his lifetime he also worked on the Great Lakes car ferries, traveled with a rodeo, worked as a ranger at Challis National Forest in Idaho, lectured on Native American History as a Seasonal Ranger Historian, was a professional folk singer, served as a horseback riding instructor, and was an excellent skier.
      Walt played an active role in furthering the cause of Native Americans and was on the Board of Directors of the John D. Voelker Foundation, serving as chair of the Native American Scholarship Committee.
      Walt had a passion for and love of the lakes, people of all diversity, and music, which he was able to transfer to those he loved most, including his children and grandchildren, through which his legacies will live on.
      Walt never lost his ability to regale his audience with his tales and music. An entertainer to the end, his passion, charisma and enchanting smile enabled him to continue to win over his audience from tots to seniors, right up to his final curtain call. His encores will play in our hearts and souls forever.
      Survivors include his wife, Doris; children, Shawn (Barbara) of Tallahassee, Fla., Holly (Terry) Gorton of Traverse City and Kevin (Nancy) of Loogootee, Ind.; six granddaughters, Nicole Gorton, Shelli Abbott, Lindsay Abbott, ReAnn Gorton, Tori Abbott and Brandi Abbott. Also surviving is his brother, Judson (Carol Ann) Abbott of Umatilla, Fla.; sister, Kathy Gentel of Holland, Mich.; 11 nieces and nephews; and several great-nieces and great-nephews.
      The family will receive friends and relatives at the Shelby United Methodist Church in Shelby Wednesday, Feb. 16, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., with funeral services immediately following.
      Memorials may be directed to the John D. Voelker American Indian Scholarship Fund, P.O. Box 15222, Lansing, MI 48901, or Shelby United Methodist Church, 68 E. Third St., Shelby, MI 49455. To leave a message of condolence for the family or to get directions visit
      Arrangements have been handled by Harris Funeral Home, (888) 216-9744.
Russell Lloyd Blissett
Died February 12, 2005
      SOUTH BOARDMAN - Russell Lloyd Blissett, 74, passed quietly into the presence of his Savior on Feb. 12, 2005, at his home in South Boardman.
      He was born on Nov. 10, 1930, in Wilson Township to William L. and Pearl (Gardner) Blissett, who preceded him in death. On Sept. 22, 1956, he married Bonnie Kay Stuck, who survives him.
      A veteran of the U.S. Army, he served in the Korean Conflict and was awarded a commendation by the South Korean government.
      Russ worked in the Kalkaska area throughout his adult life, retiring from Homco in 1993. In retirement he enjoyed restoring John Deere tractors, using his skills as a machinist to make many of the parts. He was a member of the New Hope Community Church in Acme.
      In addition to Bonnie, his loving wife of 48 years, he is survived by two sons, Russell Brad (Barbara) of Romeoville, Ill., and Douglas Lee (Ruth) of Petal, Miss.; four grandsons, Benjamin Scott of Traverse City, Ryan Douglas (Breanne) of Brookline, Mass., Michael Joshua of Evanston, Ill., and Matthew Russell of Romeoville, Ill.; a granddaughter, Jennifer Leigh of Kalkaska; great-grandchildren, Cayden Isaac and Chiara Briele of Brookline, Mass.; brothers, Louis of Tucson, Ariz., and Paul of Tyler, Texas; mother-in-law, Eula Gilbert of South Boardman; numerous nieces and nephews; and a host of friends.
      In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by a brother, Lovell, and sisters, Edith Roland and Marion Stafford.
      Visitation will take place today, Feb. 15, from 3 until 8 p.m. at Wolfe Funeral Home.
      The funeral service will be held at 2 p.m. Wednesday at the funeral home, with Pastor David Standfast of New Hope Community Church officiating. Interment will be in Boardman Township Cemetery in the spring when weather permits.
      Memorials may be given on behalf of Russ to the New Hope Community Church Building Fund, 5100 Bethesda Ct., Williamsburg, MI 49690.
      Arrangements were made by Wolfe Funeral Home.

Irene E. Booth
Died February 9, 2005
      TRAVERSE CITY - Irene E. Booth, 90, of Traverse City, passed away Wednesday, Feb. 9, 2005, at Tendercare of Traverse City.
      She was born Dec. 19, 1914, to Frederick W. and Anna (Bork) Wittkop in Dundee. Irene married John Herman Booth Jr. on June 19, 1937, in Detroit.
      Irene was a previous resident of Royal Oak. She and John had lived in the Traverse City area for the past 10 years.
      Irene is survived by two daughters, Elaine (Ron) Carron and Patricia (Richard) Rossman; five grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.
      A private burial will take place at Glen Eden Cemetery in the spring.
      Memorial contributions may be directed to The Leelanau Conservancy.
      Arrangements have been entrusted to the Traverse City Chapel of Covell Funeral Homes.
David Martindale 'Doc' Gerber, M.D.
Died February 4, 2005
      LOUISVILLE, Colo. - David Martindale "Doc" Gerber, M.D., died in Louisville, Colo., Feb. 4 ,2005, at the age of 86. He was born April 5, 1918, in Middletown, Ohio, to Dr. David Frederick and Ruth Gerber.
      He graduated from Yale University and Cornell Medical School. He served in the U.S. Navy during World War II, returning to Middletown to assume his father's general surgery practice, specializing in cancer treatment.
      He is survived by his loving wife, Page; two daughters, Susan (Butch) of Prescott, Ariz., and Ellen of Ann Arbor; three sons, David and George of Los Angeles and John of Arvada, Colo.; two step-daughters, Mary Beth (David) Driscoll of Longmont, Calif. , and Amy Phelps of Mill Valley, Calif.; three grandchildren, Jesse, Jill (Willie) and Blakeslee; and three great-grandchildren.
      He was preceded in death by his parents; brother, William; and first wife, Jane.
      In lieu of flowers, consider donations in David's memory to the Alzheimer's Support Network, 660 Tamiami Trail N., Suite 21, Naples, FL 34102.
Bruce William Groomes
Died February 3, 2005
      EMPIRE - Bruce William Groomes, 74, of Empire, formerly of Whitmore Lake, died Thursday, Feb. 3, 2005, at his residence.
      The family will receive friends to celebrate Bruce's life on Sunday, Feb. 20, at the Groomes' residence in Empire from 2 to 4 p.m. Memorial services will be held in Pinckney in May.
      Memorial contributions may be made to Munson Hospice.
      The Bennett-Barz Funeral Home in Beulah is in charge of arrangements.
Helen Kuipers
Died February 13, 2005
      NORTHPORT - Helen Kuipers, 105, of Northport, died Sunday, Feb. 13, 2005, at Leelanau Memorial Health Center.
      Helen was the much loved mother of Herman J. and Shirley D. (Schroeder) Kuipers of Northport, with whom she made her home since moving to Northport in 1981, and Gerald J. and Dr. Judith (McGeachy) Kuipers of Santa Barbara, Calif.
      Helen was born Aug. 23, 1899, in Nykerk, Netherlands; she was the daughter of Harmen and Reintje (Melgert) Motshagen. On May 10, 1920, she married John Kuipers in Nykerk.
      She is also survived by a granddaughter, Lori L. Kuipers of Clovis, Calif.; two grandsons, Mark W. (Dawn) (Jozwiake) Kuipers of Bellevue, Wash., and Christopher J. (Tracey) Kuipers of Sanford, N.C.; three great-granddaughters, Kimberly Wall, Mackenzie Kuipers and Mariaka Kuipers-Sharsher; two great-grandsons, Jonathan Kuipers and Quinn Kuipers-Sharsher; and nieces and nephews in Canada and the Netherlands.
      She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband; a daughter, Janet, on Ellis Island; a great-grandson, John Edward Kuipers; a brother, Cornealus; three sisters, Jannetije, Johanna and Martije; and a very good friend, Walter Chester.
      When she came from the Netherlands in 1923, Helen first settled in Port Colborne, Ontario, Canada. The family then moved to the Detroit area in 1928.
      In 1936, she and John, along with Walter Chester, started the Centerline Stamping Company in Centerline. They supplied different items to the war effort and sold the business in 1950.
      They moved to Midland and started the Maple Grove Mobile Home Village. It was run by the family until it was sold in 1981. Helen then moved to Northport with Herman and Shirley.
      While in Northport, Helen enjoyed driving her car to church, going out to eat (especially to her favorite restaurant in Greilickville to see friends), people and taking long drives.
      At home she kept busy crocheting lap robes for the residents at the care center in Northport. She said she made them for the "old people." She enjoyed remarkable health until September 2001, when she fell at home. She will be missed.
      Visitation will take place Wednesday, Feb. 16, from 5 to 8:30 p.m., with a prayer service at 6 p.m. at the Martinson Funeral Home of Suttons Bay. Additionally, visitation will be held Thursday, Feb. 17, from 5 to 8:30 p.m. at the Ware Smith Woolever Funeral Home of Midland (877-631-2292).
      A funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. Friday, Feb. 18, at the Ware Smith Woolever Funeral Home of Midland, followed by a graveside service at Midland Memorial Gardens.
      Memorial contributions may be directed to the charity of one's choice, or the Kateri-Tekakwitha Church, P.O. Box 369, Suttons Bay, MI 49682.
      Local arrangements are with the Martinson Funeral Home of Suttons Bay.
Fredrick D. Stafford
Sept. 6, 1953 - Feb. 12, 2005
      BELLAIRE - Fred Stafford passed away suddenly Saturday, Feb. 12, 2005, at his home in Bellaire.
      He was the son of Robert K. and Dorothy (Dyer) Stafford, born Sept. 6, 1953, in Tucson, Ariz.
      He attended Hazel Park High School. Fred served honorably in the U.S. Army in Vietnam. He enjoyed hunting, fishing and woodworking very much.
      Fred was loved very much by his family and will be dearly missed.
      He is survived by his mother, Dorothy Stafford of Elk Rapids; a brother, Donald Stafford of Huntsville, Ala.; two sisters, Toni (Jerry) Hubbell of Elk Rapids and Grace Bernauer of Rapid City; two daughters, Wendy (Andrew) Hamminga of Buckley and Jamie (David) Kozlowski of Grawn; a son, Jason Stafford of Grand Rapids; two nephews, Joe Hubbell of Elk Rapids and Michael Bush of Houghton; two nieces, Diana (Jason) Altonen of Williamsburg and Christina Bush of Novi; five grandchildren, Kane Kozlowski, Elizabeth Kozlowski, Aurora Kozlowski, Paige Bennett and Thatcher Hamminga.
      He was preceded in death by his first wife, Lisa; and his father, Robert K. Stafford.
      A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. Friday, Feb. 18, at the Elk Rapids Chapel of Covell Funeral Homes. Services will be officiated by Pastor David Mellor of Calvary Lutheran Church. Full military honors will be conducted under the auspices of the Cherryland VFW Post #2780 and AMVETS Post #114. Following the service, a luncheon will be held for friends and family at the AMVETS Post #114 in Elk Rapids.
      Arrangements have been entrusted to the Elk Rapids Chapel of Covell Funeral Homes.

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