Obituaries

Loyd Babcock, 80, Vicksburg, passed away July 5 at Bronson Methodist Hospital after a long illness. Loyd was born on April 2, 1938 in Battle Creek to Clarence and Myrtle Babcock. He graduated from Battle Creek Lakeview in 1956. Loyd met his wife of 60 years, Wanda, in 1955 on a blind date. They were married in 1958. During that year, Loyd began working in road construction. Wanda and their children followed Loyd throughout the state of Michigan as he helped build many of the state’s current highways. Loyd also served in the Marine Corps Reserve for three years during this time. After eight years and 18 moves working road construction, Loyd and Wanda decided to settle their family in Vicksburg, where he found a job working for General Motors. Loyd had a strong work ethic and was always willing to help others out when there was a need. Loyd was also considered a craftsman by many. He had a creative mind and could build or invent anything once he set his mind to it. Loyd is survived by his wife: Wanda; children Cynthia Carpenter of Portage, Diana (Phillip) Haring of Vicksburg, Joseph (Loree) Babcock of Vicksburg; grandchildren Bethany, Brittany, Bailey, Zachary, Kyler, Quintin, Eric, Evan; and great-grandchildren Elijah, Adelaide, and Oliver. Loyd was preceded in death by his parents; two brothers and a sister; son-in-law Richard Carpenter and grand-daughter Zoey Haring. Funeral services took place on Tuesday, July 10 at the Chapman Memorial-Nazarene Church in Vicksburg. In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting that donations be made to the Heartland Healthcare Center in Three Rivers or to Chapman Memorial Church or Indian Lake Nazarene Campground. Visit Loyd’s page at mccowensecord.com.

Jerry O. Burnham, 84, Vicksburg, passed away with his family at his side July 17 at Bronson Methodist Hospital. He was born March 17, 1934, in Calhoun County’s Burlington Township, the son of George and Lucille (Hanna) Burnham. Jerry was a longtime Battle Creek resident after graduating from Marshall High School with the class of 1952. He joined the United States Coast Guard following high school, serving during the Korean War. On June 21, 1957, he married Lorraine Noga, of Leonidas. Jerry was employed more than 30 years developing computer systems for Clark Equipment Co. of Battle Creek, later relocating with the company to Georgetown, KY. He was involved in real estate in the Lexington area after his retirement. He and his wife returned to Michigan in 1998, settling in Vicksburg. Never one to sit idle, Jerry worked part-time at Sears in Portage and later at Lowe’s, complementing his vast knowledge of power tools. He was also an in-store demonstrator for Dremel Tool Co. Jerry especially enjoyed the outdoors and had a hobby for every season. He was a skilled craftsman who enjoyed time in his workshop fly-tying, woodworking, and meticulously carving and painting ducks and fish. He was a member of Bass Casters of Battle Creek and served as a field tester for Strike King Lure Co. He is survived by his wife, Lorraine, of Vicksburg; a daughter, Rebecca (Jeffrey) Rietsma, of Portage; granddaughter, Jessie Rietsma, of Portage; a grandson, Jordan Burnham, of Lexington, Ky.; 17 nieces and nephews; and his beloved granddog, Dora. He was preceded in death by his parents; his sister, Sharon, in 2008; daughter, Michelle, in 1969; and son, Thomas, in 2007. In accordance with his wishes, cremation has taken place. A funeral Mass was held Saturday, July 21, at St. Edward’s Catholic Church in Mendon. Military interment took place in St. Edward Catholic Cemetery. Donations may go to National Kidney Foundation of Michigan, or the Alzheimer’s Association. Online condolences can be left at eickhofffuneralhome.com.

Gloria Feist, 76, Vicksburg, went home with her family at her side on June 27. Gloria was born on Oct. 31, 1941 to Henry and Joe (Sivak) Fortuna. A funeral mass was held on Monday July 2 at St. Martin of Tours. Gloria’s family includes her husband of 57 years, Ron; her children Ron (Robin) and Tim (Laurel); her siblings Henry (Mary) Fortuna and Maryann (Larry) Feist; her siblings-in-law: Marcia Fortuna, Sue Luurtsema, Nancy (Allan) Brown as well as several nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents; her brother, Joey Fortuna; daughter-in-law, Kathy Feist; and her brother-in-law, Robert Luurtsema. Visit her page at mccowensecord.com. Donations may go to St. Martin of Tours Catholic Church.

Cindy Ann Graham, 64, Schoolcraft, passed away July 16 at Rose Arbor Hospice. Cindy was born May 14, 1954 in Muskegon, the only daughter of Albert and Ida (Laney) Rozeboom. After graduating from Nazareth College with a BSN in 1977, Cindy worked as a public health nurse for Kalamazoo County for four years. Following the birth of her son, Andrew, she was a stay-at-home mom until he began school. Returning to work in 1987, Cindy was a prevention program supervisor until 1991, when she was named executive director of the Family Institute, a position she held until 1999. Next, Cindy became the manager of corporate affairs for Kalamazoo Neighborhood Housing Services. In 2003, she assumed the role of Grants/Community Planning Officer at Housing Resources Inc., a position she held until February 2018 when she retired. Additionally, from 1995 to 1998, she was selected as one of 20 persons in the United States to be an Active Fellow with the Kellogg International Leadership Program. Participating in this prestigious program allowed her to visit the Dominican Republic, Zimbabwe, Israel, and Scotland –including the Island of Iona – resulting in great personal growth and wonderful memories. In her private life, Cindy had a passion for gardening, crafts, bicycling, and especially for spending time with her beloved granddaughter, Olivia. On November 21, 1981, Cindy was united in marriage to her loving husband of 36 years, Michael Graham, who survives. Also surviving are a son, Andrew (Jodi) Graham; granddaughter, Olivia; mother, Ida Rozeboom; brothers, Gary (Marla) Rozeboom, Ted (Gloria) Rozeboom; nephews Nathan Rozeboom and Peter (Sherry) Graham; brother-in-law, Peter (Felicia) Graham; step-mother, Mary Rozeboom; step-sister, Beth (Dave) Steenwyk; step-brothers, Mark (Kim) DeVries, Phil (Kathy) DeVries, Joel (Andrea) DeVries. Cindy was preceded in death by her father, Albert, and her nephew, Christopher. Donations may go to the ALS Association. Visit her page at langelands.com.

Jason Haines, 43, Portage, formerly of Tecumseh, passed away June 24. Jason graduated from Tecumseh High School. He then attended Jackson Community College and Kalamazoo Valley Community College when he moved to the Kalamazoo area. Jason enjoyed spending time with family and was very close to his grandmother, who lived in Vicksburg.  Jason is survived by his daughter, Jordynne Haines, of Vicksburg; mother, Beth Haines, of Adrian; father, David (Kelly) Haines, of Tecumseh; grandmother, Elizabeth Lowe, of Vicksburg; siblings Jared Haines, of Adrian; Jordan (Amanda) Haines, of Milford; Lauren Haines, of Westland; Garrett and Catherine Haines, both of Tecumseh. He was preceded in death by his grandparents, Richard Lowe and Charles and Joan Haines. Visit his page at mccowensecord.com. Donations may go to establish a college fund for Jordynne Haines and/or InterAct of Michigan.

Barbara Jean Hansen, 76, Portage, passed away July 6. Barbara was born to Donald and Enid Crapo in Vicksburg on October 31, 1941. An informal gathering and celebration of life was held on Friday, July 13. Barbara was a graduate of Bronson School of Nursing and continued her long career in the health care industry, including 28 years as a surveyor for the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations, retiring at the end of 2017. Her passions were gardening, spending time with her grandchildren, and hosting family gatherings. Barbara is survived by her sons, Scott (Janene) Rawlinson of Mattawan and Jeff (Patricia) Hansen of Portage; siblings Donald Crapo of Fremont, Ind. and Sandy (Dan) Minger of Vicksburg; nephews Brian (Tonya) Minger, Brent Minger, Darryl Crapo, Greg Crapo and Christopher Martin; grandchildren Zachary Hansen, Tyler Rawlinson, Kyle Rawlinson, Ryan Hansen, and Julia Hansen; great-nieces Jose K. Martin; great-nephews Brendon Martin and Cole Martin. She was preceded in death by her parents, Donald and Enid Crapo, mother of many years, Maxine Crapo, and a beloved sister, Carol Ann (Crapo) Martin. Visit her page at mccowensecord.com. Donations may go to the Bronson School of Nursing.

Steven Michael Hanson, 35, Vicksburg passed away July 17. Steve was born July 13, 1983 in Detroit. He is the son of Christian and Loretta (Cross) Hanson. Steve graduated from Vicksburg High School and served in the Army National Guard 101st Division from 2001 to 2007. He received his bachelor’s degree and his masters of business administration from Davenport College. Steve enjoyed working at the circulation desk at the KVCC Library. Surviving are his parents, Christian and Loretta Hanson of Vicksburg; his grandmothers Maryann Cross and Mary Hanson; his beloved dog Jake; several aunts, uncles, cousins and special friends. Donations may go to C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital in Ann Arbor. Visit his page at www.langelands.com

Janis “John” Jablovskis, 78, Schoolcraft, formerly of King George, VA, passed away June 15. Born in Latvia on September 21, 1939, he graduated from the University of Louisville and made his career at the Naval Surface Warfare Center as a mechanical engineer for over 30 years. It was there he met the love of his life, Beverly Zodrow. They were together for over 40 years until she passed away in 2006. John is survived by his beloved daughter, Karen Ann, her husband Steve Coleman, Steve’s brother Mark, granddog Nala and various cousins. A memorial service will be held at a later date. Donations may go to BARK, 12300 Farrington Rd., Ashland, VA 23005. Visit his page at avinkcremation.com.

Albert E. “Al” Jensen, 86, Vicksburg, died June 30 at Rose Arbor Hospice in Kalamazoo. He was born in Chicago on Oct. 18, 1931, the son of Albert and Edna (Werthe) Jensen. The family moved to the Vicksburg area when Al entered the 5th grade. He graduated from Vicksburg High School in 1949. He worked briefly at Post Cereals in Battle Creek before joining the U.S. Marine Corps. After his military service, he returned to his job at Post where he retired after 37 years. He was married to Kathleen J. “Kay” Reilly on Aug. 31, 1957 in Kalamazoo. She preceded him in death on Oct. 20, 2010. Al was known to build, fix, or repair anything. He enjoyed camping and boating with his family up north and motorcycle rides with his buddies, Tom, Dick, and Larry. Al is survived by two sons, Richard D. (Heather) Jensen and Randall A. (Raquel) Jensen, both of Vicksburg; a daughter, Robin L. (Mark) Welch of Kalamazoo; grandchildren Haleigh, Jake, Miranda, and R.J. Jensen; great-grandchild Isaiah Nielsen; a sister, LaVern Barden, of Kingsville, Texas; and nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents, his wife and a sister, June Meska. In keeping with his wishes, cremation has been conducted. Donations may go to charity. Visit his page at eickhofffuneralhome.com.

Jerry L. Lovell, 77, Vicksburg, passed away June 28. He was born to Edward and Lucille (Jensen) Lovell on October 18, 1940. He graduated from White Cloud High School in 1959. He married Kathryn “Kathi” Jonaitis on October 7, 1961 and settled in Vicksburg in 1964. Jerry worked for Allied Paper and retired after 29 years. Jerry was a huge sports fan. All five of his children were athletes in high school. After high school, his sons played fast pitch softball and he and Kathi traveled all over to follow the team. The children also grew up following Jerry’s cousins fast pitch softball team. Until the last couple of years, Jerry would follow the grandchildren’s sports. He was an outdoorsman who enjoyed hunting and fishing, and one of his favorite places was his property up in White Cloud. He helped establish the Little League fields in Vicksburg. He is survived by his wife of 56 years, Kathi; children Jeff (Tracy) Lovell, of Scotts; Bruce Lovell, of Three Rivers; Brad Lovell, of Vicksburg; Amy (Randy) Miller, of Vicksburg; Doug (Emily) Lovell, of Schoolcraft. He is also survived by grandchildren Kyle (Sharon) Miller, Tyler Lovell, Amanda Lovell, Brenden Lovell, Hunter Lovell, Sydney Duong, Madison Lovell, Max Duong, Mitchell Duong, Zachary Lovell, and Bessie Stears; great grandson Mason Miller; brothers and sisters-in-law Judi (Terry) Richards, Dorothy Jonaitis, Ed (Margo) Jonaitis, Mary Lindquist, and Greg (Nancy) Folta, many close nieces, nephews, and cousins. He was preceded in death by his brother-in law, Ray Lindquist. Visit his page at mccowensecord.com. Donations may go to Kairos Dwelling.

James Raymond LeZotte, 46, Vicksburg, passed away July 8. Jim was born on May 23, 1972, the son of Martha and Raymond LeZotte. Jim is described by those who loved him as a very kind, honorable person, and had a great sense of humor. In his spare time, he enjoyed fishing, following sports, video gaming and he loved his two cats. He was a 1990 graduate of Vicksburg High School and then he went on to receive his bachelor’s degree in business administration from Western Michigan University. Jim is survived by his parents, Martha and Raymond LeZotte, of Vicksburg; his sister Karen (Steve) Raffenaud, of Portage; niece and nephew, Addison and Evan Raffenaud and several aunts and uncles. Visit his page at mccowensecord.com.

Bill Nichols, 79, Schoolcraft passed away June 25. He was born December 17, 1938, the son of the late Harold and Lillian Nichols. He is survived by his wife of 47 years, Sheila; his sister and brother-in-law, Beverly and David Hamman; his brother and his brother’s wife, Bob Nichols and Terry Furst; 12 nieces and nephews; and numerous great nieces and nephews. Bill was a 1956 graduate of Schoolcraft High School. He attended Western Michigan University and was a graduate of Coyne Electrical and Radio School in Chicago. Bill retired from General Telephone Company. He built a 33-foot trimaran and in 1992 he and Sheila sailed across the Atlantic Ocean to Europe and sailed back in 1993. He rode his bicycle across the United States once to the east coast and twice to the west coast. He and Sheila rode their bikes to New Orleans. He built his home, a gyroglider, a model train layout and repaired antique clocks and much more. Visit his page at mccowensecord.com. Donations may go to Schoolcraft Historical Society and Schoolcraft United Methodist Church.

Patricia Louise Noel, 83, Vicksburg, passed away July 24 following a long illness. She was born in Schoolcraft on April 11, 1935, the daughter of Lawrence and Alice (Downey) Beebe. She graduated from Vicksburg High School in 1953 and continued her education at Parsons Business College prior to joining Ronningen-Petter/Dover Corporation as a secretary before moving into purchasing. Patricia enjoyed gardening and cooking for the many family meals and get-togethers. Watching wildlife come into her yard looking for the treats she had placed in a metal pan always brought a smile. Pat married Harold Noel on April 14, 1955. Together they raised three children, Lee, Cindi, and Randi. After graduation, all three kids played softball and Pat and Harold were always there for support. Pat is survived by sons Lee (Missy) Noel and Randi (Deb) Noel; grandchildren Brock Noel (Kristin, Logan, Lillian), Chad Overweg (Jackie, Nick), Shannon Boyd (Mike), Tricia Willy (Matt, Tyler); a sister, Shirley Sharp; brothers Carl and Gus Beebe. She was preceded in death by her parents, Alice and Lawrence Beebe; in-laws, Art and Pearl Noel; sisters Margaret Martens, Betty Harper, and Sandy Beebe; a brother, Lawrence; daughter and son in law, Cindi and Jerry Overweg. Donations may go to Hospice Care of Southwest Michigan. Visit her page at eickhofffuneralhome.com.

Robert Glenn Swinehart, born April 23, 1930, passed away peacefully in his sleep July 5. Surviving Robert are his son, Don, and daughter, Kathleen (Patrick) Meyers; grandsons Robert, Craig, Chris, and Brad, along with five great grandchildren. Robert was preceded in death by his wife Peggy, a son Douglas, and a grandson Nicholas. A memorial gathering is pending.

Jack Whitcomb, 93, died July 2 at Rose Arbor Hospice Residence surrounded by his family. Jack was born on April 9, 1925 in Kalamazoo, the son of the late Arthur and Roselyn (Knarr) Whitcomb. Jack enlisted in the United States Navy in 1942 and served aboard the minesweeper USS Surfbird in the South Pacific. On August 20, 1948, he married Donna (Miles) Whitcomb, who preceded him in death November 4, 2014. He retired from Upjohn in 1983 after 34 years in the pipe shop. Jack enjoyed farming, building and flying experimental aircraft, making wine and beer, and time with family. Also preceding him in death were two brothers, Robert and Ralph Whitcomb. Surviving are sons, Kenneth (Sharon) Whitcomb, of Allegan, and Michael (Donna) Whitcomb, of Schoolcraft, five grandchildren and eight grandchildren. Donations may go to hospiceswmi.org/memorialsdonation/.

Douglas George Zehner, 61, Vicksburg, passed away at home Wednesday, June 27. Doug was born September 13, 1956, in Flint. He was the son of Martin Zehner and Shirley Barnett. Doug’s family moved to Portage in 1965. He graduated from Portage Central, then attended Ferris State University and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in pharmacy. Doug worked at Bronson Methodist Hospital, Borgess Hospital, Fred’s Pharmacy, Vicksburg and Harding’s Pharmacy in Schoolcraft, and at Three Rivers Hospital for the past 10 years. He enjoyed fishing, hunting, Red Wing hockey and boating on the lake with friends and family. He was preceded in death by his wife, Patti Jones-Zehner; a son, Cody Zehner, his father, Martin Zehner and stepfather, James Barnett. He leaves behind a son, Kyle Zehner of California; a daughter, Katlyn Zehner, of Kalamazoo; a brother, Greg Zehner, of North Carolina; a sister, Cheryl Prather, of Kalamazoo; a sister, Kathi Peterson, of Minnesota; his mother, Shirley Barnett, of Bloomingdale, Mich.; a granddaughter, Mykah Zehner; a grandson, Brody Dixson; nephews Chad Zehner, Soren Peterson and Victor Peterson; and nieces Daphne Baker and Nicole Gardner. Doug had many friends and was always glad to help anyone who needed his help. Doug was a kind and gentle man. In lieu of flowers, spend time with your family. Doug would want you to do that.

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