Obituaries

Ronald (Ron) Bruce Avis, 84, Vicksburg, passed away March 7. Ron was the son of Donald “Bud” and Wenona “Nona” Avis and was born on September 19, 1935. Ron was a Cedar Springs High School graduate and received his electrical license by International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers in Chicago. He joined the army and served during the Korean War. He married Nelly Sweet June 28, 1959 right after Nelly graduated from MSU. They resided in Chicago while she taught and he finished electrical school. They then moved to Vicksburg, becoming lifelong residents. He served on the Schoolcraft Township Planning Commission for many years and was a member of the Vicksburg United Methodist Church. He was most involved in the Kalamazoo County 4-H Horse Project. His favorite thing in life was to watch children blossom through their 4H projects. He was also a Freemason and a member of the IBEW Local 131. During Ron’s time as an electrician and project manager for R.W. Leet Electric, a sub-contractor of the Upjohn Company, he was in the lead on many projects. He is survived by Nelly Ann Avis after 61 years of marriage, daughters Amy Avis, Portage and Molly (Kevin) Ball of Carmel, Ind. and grandchildren Lucas, Lauryn and Griffin Ball; a brother, Norwood (Janet) Avis of Cedar Springs and several nieces and nephews. Donations may go to Generous Hands of Vicksburg, generoushands.org or the Vicksburg United Methodist Church.

Anna Burson, 94, Schoolcraft, peacefully passed away March 21 at Rose Arbor Hospice. Anna was born on August 17, 1925 to Kenneth and Irene (McClain) Nichols. She is survived by her children, David (Linda Sue) Burson of Schoolcraft, Vikki (Denny) Plothow of Portage, Stephen (Linda Jean) Burson of Schoolcraft, Jeff Burson of Schoolcraft; grandchildren Tammy (Todd) Thayer, Todd (Melissa) Burson, John Burson, Melissa (Chris) Carpenter, Kathy Jako, Joshua (Mary) Burson, Lance (Gail) Strome, Tracie Burson, Tina Burson, Michael (Mimi) Burson Jr., Billy Burson and Candy (Paul) Graham; 20 great grandchildren; 6 great-great grandchildren and several nieces and nephews. Anna was preceded in death by her husband of 46 years, Max; her children, Ronald, Michael Sr. and Theresa and her six brothers and a sister. Visit mccowensecord.com. Donations may go to Rose Arbor Hospice.

Sue Ann Hanna, 66, Scotts, passed away March 20, surrounded by family. Sue was born to George and Betty (Leversee) Srackangast on January 18, 1954. Sue is survived by her husband, Colin Hanna; children Christopher (Kelly), Dennis, and Kyle (Holly); grandchildren Nate, Ally, and Isabella; siblings Jim Srackangast and Beth Jackson; and several nieces and nephews. Sue was preceded in death by her parents and a sister, Sharon Kooyers. Sue has been cremated and a service may be held at a later date. Visit her page at mccowensecord.com. Donations may go to Hospice Care of Southwest Michigan or Talons Out Honor Flight.

Theresa (Coffinger) Huntington, passed away March 20. She was born to Ernest and Marilda (Hopkins) Coffinger on May 22, 1924. At the age of 18, she was joined in marriage to Marion (Babe) Huntington on April 24, 1943. They later welcomed nine children. Theresa loved crocheting Christmas ornaments, and making quilts for her family and friends. She spent countless hours enjoying nature and feeding the birds. Family was very important to her. Over the years the staff at the West Michigan Cancer Center had become a beloved part of her family. Theresa was preceded in death by her husband of 36 years, Marion Huntington, on December 21, 1979; infant daughters Sharon Lee in 1946 and Edith May in 1959; her parents; a brother, Norman Coffinger; sisters Sally Terry and Dora Roberts; daughter-in-law Linda (Loosier) Huntington; son-in-law John Overton; and grandson Ed Miller Jr. Surviving are sons Leslie (Angel) and David Huntington of Vicksburg; daughters Marilyn (Ed Sr.) Miller of Coldwater, Rosemary (Raymond) Weller of Coldwater, Alice (Mike) Bockstanz, of Portage, Lorie Overton, of Three Rivers and Brenda (Robert) Piper, of Vicksburg; grandchildren Shannon (Mike) Lashbrook, David (Brandi) Huntington, Raymond Weller Jr., Theresa (John) Cleckner, Jessica (Hunter) Weller, Alicia (Ron) Crandall, Michelle (Brian) VanderBor, John (Sarah) Overton, Mike (Lisa) Overton, Steve Overton, Sierra (Eric) Piper and Natalie (Jesse) Piper; great grandchildren Eddie, David and Jonathan Miller, Tyler Weller, Lindsey, Logan and Ashlyn Cleckner, Yazmene and Trenton VanderBor, Collin Crandall, Hannah and Mackenzie Overton, Camron and Jordan Overton, Laine, Aubree and Addison Overton, and James Vance. Donations may go to the West Michigan Cancer Center.

James (Jim) Lafler, passed away March 13. He was born on Sept. 12, 1935, in Leonidas. He was raised and attended school in Fulton and Vicksburg. Jim resided in Vicksburg and Portage. He worked as a lumberjack, enjoyed fishing, hunting, and catching snapping turtles. Jim was also known for hauling junk and scrap metal and cleaning out apartments and homes. Jim married Theresa Weinberg, with whom he had five children. Jim has two stepdaughters with his partner of 51 years, Beverly Ridenour. He was preceded in death by his parents, James Lafler Sr. and Neva Lafler, sons James Lafler III and Jack Lafler, brother Tom Lafler, and sister Joann Sleeman. He is survived by Beverly Ridenour, his children Rita (Doug) Diamond, Dale (Junita) Lafler, Scott (Amy) Lafler, Linda (Warner) Connor-Offord, Vickie Muncy, brother Willard (Mazy) Lafler, brother Butch (Robin) Lafler, several grandchildren, great grandchildren, nieces and nephews. A memorial service will be held at the Word for Life Church of God at a future date. Officiating at the service will be Pastor Jeffery McNally.

Marjorie June (Peggy) Zonyk Lambert, 91, passed away February 3 in Mecosta, Mich. She was born in Battle Creek on June 26, 1928, the eldest child of Raymond and Ethel (Daniels) Brown of Vicksburg. Peggy graduated Vicksburg High School in 1945. She received a certificate in medical dictation from Elkhart Business School. Peggy went to work as a clinic secretary at Bronson Hospital in Kalamazoo. On July 7, 1948, Peggy married Joe Zonyk. She served as the Brady Township treasurer. Her last job was with Gilmore Advertising in Kalamazoo. She retired in 1988. She also enjoyed old sayings she collected and eventually published them in a book she called “Grandma’s Sayings.” That book has been sold in every state in the U.S. On July 14, 1983, Peggy married John (Jack) Lambert. They were married for 27 years. Peggy is survived by her children, Dan (Caryn) Zonyk of Vicksburg and Susan (Ron) Reardon of Canadian Lakes, Mich. She is also survived by her step-children, John (Lisa) Lambert of Carmel, Ind. and Nancy Lambert, Arcadia, Kan. She was a proud and loving grandmother to her grandchildren, Angela Verwey of Plainwell, Michael (Melissa) Zonyk of Grand Rapids, Michelle (Dave) Malito of Portage, Joshua (Emily) Reardon of Shelby, N.C., Jeffrey (Lauren) Reardon of Westland, Mich., Jeff Lambert of Denver, Col. and Ryan Lambert of Indianapolis, Ind. Peggy was also blessed with seven great-grandchildren. She leaves behind two siblings, Kay Warner of Warren, Mich. and Ray Brown of Three Rivers as well as many cousins, nieces, and nephews. She was predeceased by her parents and spouses. Visit her page at mccowensecord.com. Donations may go to Royal View Assisted Living. Staff there considered her part of their family for the last 10 years of her life.

Kathleen Ruth Lange, 78, Vicksburg passed away March 22. Kathy was born on September 22, 1941 in Allegan. She was the fifth child of eight to Theodore and Josephine (McGeath) Lange. She graduated from Allegan High School with the class of 1959. Kathy completed beauty school and enjoyed being a beautician for many years. Later on, her love for flowers lead her to design floral arrangements for Shafer Flowers in Kalamazoo, and she also for a period of time had her own business called Silk Creations. Her hobbies included working in her flower garden and painting. She raised her children on Long Lake and enjoyed the lake life with pontoon rides, fishing, and many sunsets. While her children were younger, she was a leader for both Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts and active in the Vicksburg Athletic Boosters. While her boys were in high school, she organized spaghetti dinners for the football team that is now a tradition in the community. Most important to Kathy was her faith and her family. She loved when her family was all together and supported her children’s and grandchildren’s many endeavors. She will be remembered by her family for being giving, helpful, generous, spunky, faithful, strong willed, and very family-oriented. Kathy is survived by her three children, Kelly (Dan) Oswalt, of Vicksburg; Scott Swope, of Vicksburg; and Matt (Debbie) Swope, of Vicksburg; grandchildren: Megan (JT Neel) Oswalt, Emily (Andy) Foster, Katie (Derek) Debiak,  Amanda Swope and Nick Swope, all of Vicksburg; great grandchildren Grady and Addy Foster, both of Vicksburg. She is also survived by her brother, Thomas Lange, of Allegan; sister Gretchen (Ron) Wedge, of Allegan; brother-in-law Ken Washburn, of Hopkins; and many nieces, nephews and cousins. She was preceded in death by her great granddaughter, Josie Neel; siblings Grace Ann (Gerald) Richardson, Sue (Joe) Huguelet, Barbara Jo Washburn, Mary Joan Lange, Ted (Wanda) Lange; special cousin Edna “Skip” McDonough; and sister-in-law Sue Lange. Kathy will have a Celebration of her Life on her birthday, September 22, 2020 from 5-8 p.m. at R&R Weddings and Events. Visit her page at mccowensecord.com. Donations may go to Birch Meadows.

Rose Elizabeth Moore, 104, Vicksburg passed away March 24. Rose was born on November 13, 1915 in Leonidas, MI. She was the daughter of Earl and Nora (Lunger) Lash. Rose married Floyd Moore on December 21, 1960. She worked as a cook for over 25 years at the State Hospital before retiring. Her hobbies included cooking and crocheting. Rose will be remembered by her family and friends as: amazing, fun to be around, loving, caring, giving, and having a joyful heart. Rose is survived by her husband of 59 years, Floyd; five grandchildren: Robert R. (Diana) Siscoe, of Albion; Floyd A. (Stacy) Siscoe, of Mattawan; Craig Siscoe, of Bronson; Elizabeth A. (James) Moore, of SC; Vicky Muncy, of Kalamazoo; and many great and great great grandchildren. She is also survived by her sister, June Potter, of Vicksburg, and several nieces and nephews. She is preceded in death by her son: Robert E. Siscoe. Rose has been cremated and no services are planned at this time. Visit her page at mccowensecord.com.

Virgene Rae Price, 79, Portage, formerly of Vicksburg, passed away March 17. Virgene was born on January 14, 1941 in Weidman, Mich. She was the daughter of Clare and Ruth (Hart) Oberlin. On December 17, 1988 she married Leonard Price and blended their families together. Virgene is survived by her children, Lori (Allen) Shedd; Mark (Melissa) Kuepfer; Paul Kuepfer; Kristin (Scott) Watkins; and 11 grandchildren and three great grandchildren.  She was preceded in death by siblings Richard (Carol) Oberlin and Sharon (Orlo) Johnson and by her husband, Leonard Price. A memorial service will be planned for a later date at St. Michael Lutheran Church in Portage. Please continue to check Virgene’s webpage at mccowensecord.com where you can get updated service information, sign the guestbook, and share a memory with the family. The family is being assisted by the McCowen & Secord Funeral Home, Rupert-Durham Chapel, Vicksburg.

Julia Marie Smith, 53, Vicksburg, passed away March 18. Born to William and Phyllis (Watson) Smith on May 24, 1966, in Vicksburg. She was the older of two as she was joined in her family by her brother, Jeff. She attended local schools including Vicksburg High School. There, Julia was an avid softball player, was in track, and also played the clarinet in the marching band. She was thrilled to welcome three children, Adam, Stephanie, and Makenna, into her heart and home. Later, she was blessed to add two grandchildren, Sophia and Mia, into the family. It was easy to see that Julia’s granddaughters were her greatest source of pride and joy. For more than 20 years, she was blessed with the companionship of Chris Pillars after meeting him at a New Year’s Eve party. She spent more than 16 years working at Linden Woods Dental, and she also worked at Main Street Pub in Vicksburg for over 10 years. Julia loved Keno and traveling, and when at home she loved a good Lifetime movie. Julia is survived by her companion of 20 years, Chris Pillars; three children: Adam (Ryan) Phillips, of Canton; Stephanie (Michael Alexander) Phillips, of Kalamazoo; Makenna Pillars, of Vicksburg; two grandchildren: Sophia and Mia Alexander, of Kalamazoo. She is also survived by her mother: Phyllis Smith, of Scotts; and brother Jeff (Kim) Smith, of Vicksburg. She is preceded in death by her father, William Smith; grandparents: Edward and Betty Smith and Richard and Evelyn Watson. A memorial service is being planned for a later date. Visit her page at mccowensecord.com. Donations may go to the family c/o Stephanie Phillips.

Doug Truckey, 80, Vicksburg, passed away with family by his side on March 1. Doug was born on February 15, 1940 to Francis and Helen (McElevain) Truckey. Following his wishes, cremation has taken place. Doug is survived by his wife of 62 years, Jan; his children, Scott (Susan) Truckey, Jeff (Jean) Truckey, Brian (Karen) Truckey and Lori (Jacob) Bittle; 14 grandchildren; 16 great grandchildren with 3 more on the way, as well as several nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents; his son, Dennis, his brother, Frances Jr., and his sister, Sandra. Doug enjoyed woodworking and watching westerns on TV. He loved spending time with his family and lived for his grandchildren. He enjoyed farming, hunting and fishing as well as trap shooting. Doug retired from Fox River Paper Company after 17 years. He served his country proudly in the United States Air Force for 6 years. He was very patriotic all his life. Please visit Doug’s memory page at mccowensecord.com where you can leave a memory for his family.

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