Billy (Bill) Don Craddock, 90, Vicksburg, passed away on September 27, 2023. Bill was born to Frank and Alberta Craddock on June 28, 1933 in Benton, Illinois. The family moved to Kalamazoo and Bill graduated from Kalamazoo Central High School. Bill served during the Korean War from 1953-57 at Williams Air Force Base in Chandler, Arizona as a jet mechanic. He spent two years in mechanic school there and worked on F-86, F-84, and T-33 jets. He married Margarite (Marge) Sutton on August 21, 1955. They raised their family in Vicksburg. Bill worked for Consumers Energy in meter services and retired in 1992. Bill appreciated and enjoyed all his friends at the Gym in the mornings, coffee at Yogi’s in the afternoon, and at the VFW on Sprinkle Rd for Wednesday night burgers. Bill’s favorite hobby was the casino, where his brother Larry often took him to play slots and Mississippi stud poker. He especially loved his time with his family. Bill is preceded in death by his wife Marge and his mother and father. He is survived by his brother Larry Craddock; sister Katherine (Garth) Snow; children Susan (Tim) Frisbie and Doug (Joanne) Craddock; grandchildren Chance Frisbie, Keegan (Maddison) Frisbie, and Mitchel (Kristen) Craddock; and great-grandchildren Sadie and Beau Craddock. Visit his page at amsfuneralhome.com. Donations may go to Generous Hands in Vicksburg.
Chester Michael Dobrowolski, 96, Three Rivers, died September 1, 2023. He was born March 20, 1927 in Park Township, the son of Frances Dobros and Michael Dobrowolski. He graduated from Three Rivers High School with the class of 1944. Chester served in the U.S. Army during WWII from 1945-1947 and received a Victory and Army of Occupation medals and the rank of sergeant major. In 1951, he married Bernice Penar at St. Edward Catholic Church in Vicksburg. Shortly after, Chet and Bernice moved to the Dobrowolski family farm where they resided for 70 years, raising their children and hosting many family celebrations, class reunions, and legendary polka parties in their barn. Chester worked for 39 years in the paper industry, eventually becoming superintendent of the finishing department at Simpson Lee Paper Company in Vicksburg. His passion was farming. He served Park Township and St. Joseph County in various capacities for over 70 years and was a member of Immaculate Conception Church. Remaining to cherish his memory are daughters Sally (Jeffrey) Middleton of Three Rivers and Joanne (Keith) Dalgleish of Bloomfield Hills; son John (Gwen) Dobrowolski of Haslett; grandchildren Alex (Kerry), Collin, and Lucas (Erin) Middleton; Michael (Catherine) and Jack (Joan) Dalgleish; Stephanie (Nathan) Overholser and John (Fernanda) Dobrowolski, Jr.; step-grandchildren, Amanda Geml and Alex (Anna) Geml; nine great-grandchildren and five step great-grandchildren; many special nieces and nephews. Chester was preceded in death by his wife, Bernice; infant son Timothy Joseph; his parents; brothers Joseph and Wesley Dobrowolski and sister Stephanie Dobrowolski. Cremation has taken place per Chester’s wishes. Visitation will take place on Friday, October 6, 2023 from 4-7 p.m. at Hohner Funeral Home with Rosary to be recited at 7 p.m. A Mass of Christian Burial will be on Saturday, October 7, 2023 at 10 a.m. at Immaculate Conception Church in Three Rivers. Interment will be at Parkville Cemetery. Donations may go to Birch Meadows Senior Care, Centrica Care Navigators (Hospice), Homes For Our Troops, or a charity of one’s choice. Visit his page at hohnerfh.com.
Jerry Kuiper, 99, went home to be with the Lord on September 8, 2023. He was the son of Henry and Antje (Sportel) Kuiper and had 12 siblings. Jerry was born in Portage on October 6, 1923, and lived there for most of his life. Jerry was a World War II veteran. He retired from Eaton Corporation in Kalamazoo after 53 years. Jerry married Justine Coughlin and they had three children together: Randy Kuiper, Roger Kuiper, and Sharon (Dale) Rinehart. Jerry loved music. He and Justine would play music together, Jerry on auto harp, she on guitar. They sang well together, traveled all over, and people loved them. Justine passed away on September 10, 2012, at the age of 90. A memorial service for Jerry will take place at 11 am. on Saturday, October 7, 2023, at the Faith Fellowship Church. Visit his page at amsfuneralhomes.com.
Thomas Owen Meyers, the only son born to Kenneth and Eva (Blink (nee Pincomb)) Meyers on November 9, 1951, peacefully left this world on August 24, 2023. Living in Southwest Michigan, Tom kept his family front and center and was a hard-working business owner for over 20 years. He and Nolene instilled that same drive and devotion in their boys. Tom had a love for all things outdoors, starting from his days in the Scouts and passed on that passion to his sons through camping and canoe trips to Silver Lake and the Upper Peninsula, hunting every fall, and fishing with them every chance he got. Ask any of his friends and they’ll tell you, Tom loved big, without apology and could make anyone smile. You always knew where you stood with him, and he was loyal to a fault. His true devotion was to his wife of 31 years, Nolene. Whether it was in a canoe or pontoon, he loved to be the captain of her ship. He is survived by his sons Justin (Amy) Moberley, Travis Meyers; grandchildren Owen and October Moberley and Jaxon Meyers. He also leaves behind his mother Eva Blink; sisters Connie (Tom) Glass, Judy (Paul) Brisbane, Peggy (Steve) Makowski, Marilyn Carroll and many nieces and nephews who will miss him greatly. A celebration of life will take place at a date to be determined after the New Year. Visit his page at amsfuneralhomes.com.
Betty Elaine Shearer, 92, Vicksburg, peacefully passed away September 12, 2023. She was born on May 21, 1931 in Alamo, Michigan to Oscar and Opal (Hamlin) Allison. Betty graduated from Vicksburg High School in 1949 and married Edwin Shearer on January 6, 1951. She served as a matron of the Order of the Eastern Star in the Vicksburg Chapter and was a member of both the Schoolcraft Fraternal Order of Eagles Post 3531 and the American Legion Post 475. She loved gambling, spending quality time at the family cottage on Portage Lake and the Detroit Tigers. She worked at the Greater Kalamazoo Car Auction for 25 years. Betty also enjoyed bowling and dancing on Friday and Saturday nights. Her positive outlook on life was contagious, and she found beauty and happiness in everyday moments. Betty was preceded in passing by her parents, husband Edwin Shearer, grandson Travis Wright, daughter Rhonda Wright, and her three siblings. She is survived by her children, Allen (Emily) Shearer and Linda (Mike) Fisher; son-in-law Perry Wright; grandchildren Michelle DeMattei, Andrea (Doug) Prudden, Cole (Stephanie) Fisher, and Paul (Kortni) Fisher; and eight great-grandchildren. Donations may go to the Branch County Humane Society or the White Pigeon Fire Department. Visit her page at amsfuneralhomes.com.
Dustin J. Strayer, Dowagiac, passed away September 2, 2023, after a long illness. Dustin was born June 24, 1969, the son of Howard and Clarice (Vining) Strayer. Dustin was a 1988 Centreville High school graduate. He recently moved to Michigan after living the past 35 years in California. He spent eight years in the Marine Corps. Dustin loved working with his hands. He also enjoyed working on cars and remodeling houses. Dustin was a caring, outgoing, and understanding father, a loving brother, and a great friend. He will be truly missed, thought of every day and always loved. He is survived by sons Yenz D. Strayer, Larz D. Strayer, and Reez Strayer. Dustin is also survived by his mother, Clarice E. Strayer; sister, Tonya (Benny) Gay; loving friend Heidi Dawson; and several nieces and nephews. Dustin was preceded in death by his father, brother Howard Strayer II, and niece Carry M. Gay. Visit his page at amsfuneralhomes.com.