January 17, 2018

Jack R. Fairfield, Died Jan. 16, 2018



Jack R. Fairfield
Died Jan. 16, 2018

SUTTON BAY – Jack Robert Fairfield, 93, of Suttons Bay and formerly of Roseville, passed away Tuesday, Jan. 16, 2018 at Tendercare of Leelanau.
Jack was born Feb. 27, 1924 in Kokomo, IN the son of Dewey and Mary Elizabeth (Hughes) Fairfield.  On Nov. 22, 1945 at the Sacred Heart Church of Roseville he married Catherine (Ringler) Fairfield, who survives.
Jack lived a full and happy life.  He was married to his beautiful wife Catherine for 72 years.  Jack served as a Machinist Mate in the U.S. Navy on the USS Ranger during World War II.  After his service he worked for the Roseville Police Department for 27 years and retired in 1979.
Jack was a permanent resident of Suttons Bay for the last 30 years, spending his winters in Florida.  Jack was an accomplished woodworker, builder, and teller of tales.  Always ready with a story or a joke, Jack brought happiness and laughter to all that met him.
Jack is survived by his wife Catherine; his four children Christine (Charles) Ginnard, Robert (Rebecca) Fairfield, Cynthia (Edwin) Reese, and Richard (Leslie) Fairfield; a sister, Patricia Garlock; nine grandchildren, and sixteen great-grandchildren. 
He was preceded in death by his parents and two grandchildren.
Visitation will be held from 1 to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 20 with the service starting at 3 p.m. at the Martinson Funeral Home of Suttons Bay.  Burial in St. Michael’s Cemetery will be announced in the spring.  Pastor Richard Fairfield will officiate.
Memorials may be directed to Wounded Warrior Project, PO Box 758516, Topeka, KS 66675-8516.
Condolences may be shared with Jack’s family below or at the funeral home Facebook page:

January 16, 2018

Donovan R. Kiessel, Died Jan. 13, 2018


Donovan R. Kiessel
Died Jan. 13, 2018

BINGHAM TOWNSHIP – Donovan Raymond Kiessel, 71 of Bingham Township, passed away Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018 at home surrounded by his loving family.

Donovan was born Aug. 22, 1946 in Suttons Bay at the family farm house on the corner of County Road 633 and Fort Road.  He was the son of Frank Kiessel Sr. and Rita (Priest) Kiessel.

On July 3, 1965 at St. Michael’s Church of Suttons Bay he married Janet (Showers) Kiessel who was his best friend and love of his life for 55 years and had three children.  Don's Catholic faith was a very important part of his life, he was a life-long member of St Michaels Catholic Church.

Don worked as a lineman at Consumers Energy for 35 years.  He enjoyed seeing the smiles on people’s faces after he had helped turn their electricity back on.  Even after he “retired” Don worked another 10 years for other line companies as a contractor.  Don never complained about having to leave his family to go help others.  He would leave to far off areas that were affected by a storm or a natural disaster to help restore the power to those communities.

In addition to being a lineman he was a cherry farmer.  In 1976, Don and Jan with Don's brother Bill and his wife Betty started a small cherry farm that grew into a larger operation known now as Kiessel Farms.  He enjoyed every minute of his busy work and farm life with his family being involved, he taught them work ethic and farming knowledge.  Most recently, along with his brother they were awarded the 2018 Cherry Industry Lifetime Achievement award for outstanding service and exceptional leadership in the world of cherries.

Don was the founding member of the Rex Dobson Ruby Ellen Farm Foundation, his knowledge and wisdom guided the Ruby Ellen Farm Board of Trustees for 17 years.  Don was also a member of the Bingham Township Planning Commission and a 25-year member of the Suttons Bay Bingham Fire and Rescue Dept.   He was a 30-year member of the Knights of Columbus.

Don also enjoyed being with friends that he shared a lifetime of memories with.  A special event that he looked forward to every year for the past 30 years was their annual food Garbage Can Party.  This event was attended by many of their life-long friends.  Don looked forward to this day every year and the many stories that were always shared.  Some of these friends now continue their memories by wintering in the same community as Don and Jan did in Florida. 

A passion and hobby for Don was his love for hunting.  He enjoyed teaching his sons and grandsons the craft of hunting, on occasion he would get one of his grand-daughters out hunting in his blind with him.  He also enjoyed an annual trip to the Upper Peninsula in the fall to a "Kiessel Cabin" for deer camp, a tradition that was enjoyed by his Dad, brothers, sons, grandsons, and nephews.

Don's busy life had him building memories with his children and family, he was always a kid at heart.  He and Jan faithfully attended countless children's and grandchildren's school sporting and other events. 

When grandchildren came into his life Don would always be rolling on the ground, playing games, tricks, and getting in trouble with them, there was never a dull moment when Grandpa was around.  He loved amusement parks with his kids and grandkids and made sure that they were always running to be first in line and in the first seat of the highest and fastest roller coaster.

Don was a man with a foundation of faith with an unending love for his family, grandchildren and great grandchildren.  The family expresses their deepest thanks to Hospice of Michigan for the wonderful care to Don.

Donovan is survived by his wife, Janet; his children, Donovan L. (Diane) Kiessel, Edward J. (Dulce) Kiessel, Jody Kiessel; his grandchildren, Katie (Chris) Skowronski, Chris and Nick Kiessel, Shane and Shantel Francis, Camilla, Michka and Landen Kiessel; his great grandchildren, Mackenzie, Carter and Isaiah Skowronski; his siblings, Bill (Betty) Kiessel, Frank (Marilu) Kiessel, Janet (Ron) Send, Randy (Debbie) Kiessel, Gary (Betty) Kiessel, Vic (Janice Sue) Kiessel, Sue (Gary) Herman; his sister-n-law April Showers-Cox; and many loving nieces, nephews and friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents Frank and Rita Kiessel.

Visitation will be held from 3 p.m. to the 7 p.m. prayer service on Friday, Jan. 19 at the Martinson Funeral Home of Suttons Bay.  The mass will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 20 at St. Michael’s Church of Suttons Bay.  Father Leonard Paul will serve as celebrant.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to Rex Dobson Ruby Ellen Farm Foundation, PO Box 492, Suttons Bay, MI 49682; Leelanau Conservancy, PO Box 1007, Leland, MI 49654 and/or Mass Intentions.

Please share condolences with Donovan’s family below or at the funeral home's Facebook page:

January 13, 2018

Berniece Marie Winowiecki, Died Jan. 13, 2018


Berniece M. Winowiecki
Died Jan. 13, 2018

CEDAR – Berniece Marie Winowiecki, 94, lifelong resident of Cedar, passed away Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018 at Tendercare of Leelanau with her family at her side.
Berniece was born Aug. 26, 1923 in Cedar to the late William and Pelagia (Cerkowski) Mikowski.  On Sep. 1, 1941 at Holy Rosary Church she married, for sixty-six years, Frank J. Winowiecki who preceded her in death on Sep. 25, 2007.
She was a lifetime member of the Holy Rosary Church and was a member of the Rosary Society.  Berniece was the fourteenth of fifteen children and was the last survivor.
Berniece is survived by three sons, Ben (Virginia), Frank Jr. (Claudette) and William (Sue) Winowiecki; three daughters, Charlene (Richard) Kulanda, Mary (Ray) Savage, and Janet Winowiecki; eighteen grandchildren, twenty-seven great grandchildren, and one great-great grandchild.
She was preceded in death by nine brothers, Anselm, Steve, Frank, Clement, Eddie, Leonard, William Jr., Janarius and Peter; five sisters, Mary Umlor, Polly Novak, Sister Mary Eugenia, Sister Mary Juliet and Loretta; one grandchild, John Paul Winowiecki; and one great-grandchild, Lucas Noonan.
Visitation will be held from 5 to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 16 with the Rosary to be prayed at 7 p.m. at Holy Rosary Church of Cedar.  The mass will be held at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 17 with the family greeting friends at 10 a.m., also at the church.  Burial in Mt. Calvary Cemetery will be announced in the spring.  Father Donald Libby will serve as celebrant.
In lieu of flowers memorials may be directed to Holy Rosary Church, 6982 S. Schomberg Rd, Cedar MI 49621, or St. Jude’s Children’s Hospitals, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105 and/or Mass Intentions.
Condolences may be shared with Berniece’s family below or at the funeral home's Facebook page:

Mary Alice Stachnik, Died Jan. 12, 2018



Mary A. Stachnik
Died Jan. 12, 2018

MAPLE CITY – Mary Alice Stachnik, 90, of Maple City, passed away Friday, Jan. 12, 2018 at Maple Valley Nursing Home with her family at her side.
Mary was born April 23, 1927 on the Cleveland Township family farm; the daughter of James Nachazel and Mary Rose Henrietta (Sindelal) Nachazel.  On May 17, 1958 at St. Joseph Church of Maple City she married William Stachnik who preceded her in death on Aug. 16, 1960.
Mary was a life long member of St. Joseph’s Church of Maple City.  For years she volunteered at Maple Valley Nursing Home before being welcomed into their care.
Mary is survived by her son, William (Jennifer) Edward Nachazel of Holland.
She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, William and a brother, Charles.
The funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 16 at St. Rita/ St. Joseph’s Church of Maple City with the family greeting friends at 10 a.m.  Burial in Cleveland Township Cemetery will be announced in the spring.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to Maple Valley Nursing Home, 1086 West Burdickville Rd, Maple City, MI 49664.
Condolences may be shared with Mary’s family below our at the funeral home's Facebook page:

January 9, 2018

Charlene M. Steimel Died Jan. 5, 2018


Charlene M. Steimel
Died January 5, 2018

BINGHAM TOWNSHIP – Charlene Marie Steimel, 91, of Bingham Township, passed away on Friday, Jan. 5, 2018 at Munson Hospice House.
Charlene was born on June 12, 1926 in Gills Pier, the daughter of Arthur C. and Anna M. (Kolarik) Houdek.  On Nov. 3, 1945 in Gills Pier, she married Donald Aloysius Steimel who preceded her in death on Jan. 19, 1999.
Charlene is survived by her daughter, Loraine (Gerald) McNeil; son, Alfred (Debbie) Steimel; eight grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.
In addition to her husband, she was preceded in death by her sons, Kenneth, Gary, and Dale; and daughter, Connie Maxon.
A memorial mass will be held on Thursday, Jan. 18, 2018 at 11 a.m. at St. Michael’s Church, Suttons Bay, with family greeting friends one hour prior.  Fr. Leonard Paul will serve as celebrant.  Interment at St. Michael’s Cemetery will be held in the spring. 
Memorials may be directed to Mass Intentions and/or to Munson Hospice House, 1150 Medical Campus Drive, Traverse City, MI 49684.
Condolences may be shared with Charlene’s family below or on our Facebook page.
Arrangements are with the Martinson Funeral Home & Cremation Services of Leelanau.

Terry R. Patton DIed Dec. 31, 2017


Terry R. Patton
Died Dec. 31, 2017

TRAVERSE CITY – Terry Russell Patton, 48, of Traverse City, passed away Sunday, Dec. 31, 2017 at Munson Medical Center.
Terry was born on Nov. 28, 1969, in Bellaire, the son of Russell and Rhea (Gregory) Patton.  On Aug. 4, 2017 in Traverse City, he married Shannon Lynn Carter, who survives.
Terry was a giving man who had a heart of gold, always worried about others before himself.  He was a positive and optimistic man who was mechanically inclined.  If it ran on gasoline or had an engine – Terry could fix it.  He was also artistically gifted, and his talent can be seen on the wall of Ace Hardware in Traverse City where his colorful mural greets patrons.
In addition to his wife, Shannon, Terry is survived by his newborn daughter, Diamond Patton; brothers, Rick Lee Patton and Bradley James Patton; in-laws, Dan and Julie Carter; and aunts and uncles.
He was preceded in death by his mother, Rhea, on April 12, 2009.
Private family services have been held.  Memorials may be directed to his wife, Shannon Patton, for the care of their newborn, P.O. Box 174, Grawn, MI 49637.
Condolences may be shared with Terry’s family below or on our Facebook page.

December 22, 2017

Felix M. Rice II, Died Dec. 19, 2017



Felix M. Rice II
Died Dec. 19, 2017

MAPLE CITY – Felix Michael Rice II, 67, of Maple City, passed away Tuesday, Dec. 19. 2017 at home surrounded by his loving family.
Felix was born Aug. 12, 1950 in Traverse City the son of Felix M. Rice and Cecelia E. (Bembeneck) Rice.  On July 17, 1971 at St. Rita’s Church of Maple City he married his loving wife of forty-six years, Diana M. (Shorter) Rice, who survives.
Felix was a man whose character was based on faith, family and hard work.  From the age of 17 until he retired at age 65 he worked as a mason.  He rose to become a master mason and for decades owned and operated his own company.
He was an avid outdoorsman who loved hunting; with his brother Leo, on the Rice family farm and his school lake property.  Felix’s friends knew him as an early morning fisherman with start times of 4:30 or 5:30 AM being the norm.  A treasured family memory is when his brother Leo and son Phillip took him on his first out of state trip to go Elk hunting in Montana.
Felix was a master cook and baker.  He crafted a lot of food from his giant garden.  He grew a lot and gave a lot away to help his friends and family.  Felix could cook soups, venison, and many other dishes. 
He was a man of faith who dedicated his skills and time to his church, the Holy Rosary Church of Cedar.  Felix thought of others before himself; he was called home with the treasure and enjoyment of his family, children and especially his grandchildren.
Felix is survived by his wife, Diana; his four sons, Matt (Amy) Rice, Michael Rice, Phillip (Stephanie) Rice, Felix M. Rice III; his siblings, Alfred Rice, Jim (Mona) Rice, Millie (Ronald) Evans, Harold Rice, Leo (Marilyn) Rice, Mark (Linda) Rice, Rebecca Houser; four grandchildren, Nick, Aubree, Kara, Tyler, a great grandchild, Braylon; and many loving cousins, nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, and a brother, Thomas Rice.
Visitation will be held from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Thursday, Dec 28 with the Rosary to be prayed at 7:30 pm at the Holy Rosary Church of Cedar.  The mass will be held at 11 a.m. on Friday, Dec. 29 with the family greeting friends at 10 a.m., also at the church.  Burial will follow in Mt. Calvary Cemetery.  Father Donald Libby will serve as celebrant.
Memorials may be directed to St. Judes’ Children’s Research Hospital, and/or Shriners Hospitals for Children, and/or Mass Intentions.
Please share memories and condolences below or at the Martinson Funeral Home facebook page.

December 21, 2017

Betty J. Edwards, Died Dec. 20, 2017


Betty J. Edwards
Died Dec. 20, 2017

OMENA – Betty Jane Edwards, 90, of Omena passed away peacefully on Wednesday, Dec. 20, 2017 at home surrounded by her loving family.
Betty was born June 20, 1927 in Northport the daughter of John and Ester (Jackson) Franklin.  In 1985 in Benzonia she married David William Edwards who preceded her in death in 1999.
Betty loved gardening, especially her flowers.  Betty enjoyed the outdoors and especially the birds that would visit her bird feeders.  She loved going to the casino, shopping until she dropped and putting together picture puzzles.  Betty also enjoyed playing cards and was unbeatable at 500 Rummy.
She was master seamstress, crafting clothes, baby blankets, matching cushions and curtains.  Betty loved to act silly and have fun.  She was a practical joker and loved her dogs, Buddy the jack russell terrier and her beagle, Jiggs.
Betty was never in a bad mood, a naturally nice loving person who never had a bad thing to say.
Betty is survived by her children, Joseph (Judy) Raphael, George (Marty) Bailey, Hank (Amy) Bailey, Randy (Faith) Bailey, Phyllis (Jim) Carr, June Bailey, Pauline (Tim) Koon, Cyndi (Michael Dargis) Bailey, Scott (Becky) Bailey; her step children, Judy Battle, Linda (William) Valleau, David (Michael) Edwards, Thomas (Sara) Edwards, Lorrie (Ken) Porte, Kristee (Wade) Mariage, Vince (Jill) Edwards, Jan (Steve) Bailey; thirty-eight grandchildren, fifty-one great grandchildren and sixteen great great grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, David; an infant son and a granddaughter, Joline.
Visitation will be held today, Dec. 22 from 4 to 7 p.m. at the Martinson Funeral Home of Suttons Bay.  The funeral service will be held at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 23 at the Northport Indian Mission Church.  Burial in Omena Hillcrest Cemetery will be announced in the spring.  Pastor Terry Wildman will officiate.
Condolences may be shared with Betty’s family at the Martinson Funeral Home facebook page or below:

December 19, 2017

Carol A. (Reincke) Nelson, Died Dec. 12, 2017


Carol R. Nelson
1918- 2017

SUTTON BAY – Carol Reincke Nelson, 99, of Suttons Bay, died on December 12, 2017 at French Manor South Assisted Living in Traverse City.  On January 2, 1943 she married Kenneth Nelson in Traverse City.  Ken preceded her in death on Feb. 24, 1989.
Carol was born to Arthur and Mary Reincke on a family farm in Bingham Township on April 23, 1918.  She graduated as salutatorian from Suttons Bay Union High School in 1935 and then worked as an assistant to Dr. EJ Bolan.  Carol joined the Congregational Church in Suttons Bay in 1935 and at her death was its longest living member.
During World War II Carol was a teller at Traverse City State Bank.  From 1955 to 1977, she and Ken owned and operated the Bay View Hardware Store in Suttons Bay. During their retirement years they enjoyed time with their family, traveling, and boating on Grand Traverse Bay.  In her later years Carol enjoyed doing a daily crossword puzzle, watching television game shows, and following Tiger baseball and Michigan State University basketball.
Carol had a kind and generous spirit and will be missed by her family and all who knew her.
Carol is survived by her two children, Sharon Nelson of Wayland; Randy (Chris) Nelson of Empire; two grandchildren, Katherine (Mark) Daniels and Emily (Milan) Bhandari; three great grandchildren, Kyleigh and Micah Daniels and Mira Bhandari; a nephew, Ron Nash; and special friend, Mimi Byrne. She was preceded in death by her parents, Ken, and her siblings, Ruby and Glen Reincke and Garnet Nash.
A memorial service will be announced in the spring.
In lieu of flowers memorials may be directed to Suttons Bay Congregational Church, PO Box 70, Suttons Bay, MI 49682; Suttons Bay-Bingham Friendship Community Center, PO Box 51, Suttons Bay, MI 49682 and/or ShareCare of Leelanau, 7401 E. Duck Lake Road, #600, Lake Leelanau, MI 49653-8701.
Condolences may be shared with Carol’s family at our Facebook page or below:

December 12, 2017

Donald E. Hacker Died Nov. 27, 2017



Donald E. Hacker
Died Nov. 27, 2017

FLORIDA – Donald Edward Hacker, 94 years young, and always having a good Lake Michigan tan of Suttons Bay, Michigan, and Bradenton, Florida, passed away on November 27, 2017 at Manatee Memorial Hospital of Bradenton, Florida, surrounded by his loving family.

Don was born August 22, 1923, the son of Hobart and Florence Hacker in Royal Oak, Michigan.  He attended Hobart College in Geneva, New York.  Don served with the Navy as a Seabee in the South Pacific during WWII.  He married Mary Ann on August 12, 1950.  Don was one of the seven founders of the Chrysler Management Club (founded in 1962) and a member of its Board of Directors.  He retired from Chrysler in 1983 after 25 years.  Don was an avid golfer.  He was a Deacon of the First Presbyterian Church of Birmingham, Michigan, where he had the honor of serving as Chairman of the Ministerial Selection Committee.  Don was a charter member of ShareCare of Leelanau and volunteered at the Leelanau Peninsula Chamber of Commerce.

Don is survived by his wife, friend, and soulmate of 67 years, Mary Ann Hacker; his three children: daughter Mary and husband Eric Moorehead, son Donald and wife Sheri Hacker, and daughter Carole Carpenter; his six grandchildren: Leslie Knight, Ryan Moorehead, Alex Hacker, Reed Hacker, Kyle Carpenter, and Kaitlyn Carpenter.

Memorials may be directed to ShareCare of Leelanau, 7401 E. Duck Lake Road, #600, Lake Leelanau, MI 49653-8701 or through www.ShareCareLeelanau.org.

A memorial service will be held in Northern Michigan in the summer of 2018.

Condolences may be shared with Don’s family below or on our Facebook page.

December 11, 2017

Harold R. Gronseth Died Dec. 10, 2017



Harold Roosevelt Gronseth
September 4, 1929 - December 10, 2017

Harold Roosevelt Gronseth, 88, a longtime resident of Suttons Bay and teacher in the Traverse City Area Public Schools, died Sunday, Dec. 10 in Perry, Georgia.

Mr. Gronseth, who last taught at the former Norris Elementary School before his retirement in 1982, was a 1948 graduate of Suttons Bay High School. He also taught in two other Michigan communities, Reed City and Greenville, during his 27-year teaching career. He was born in Detroit and moved with his parents to Suttons Bay while in high school.

Mr. Gronseth and his family had deep ties to Suttons Bay, where his father had a cherry orchard and his paternal grandfather, and later his uncle, operated Gronseth’s Shoe Store. His Norwegian immigrant grandfather, Lars J. Gronseth, moved to Suttons Bay from Bay City in 1886 after answering an ad for a shoemaker.

As a young man, Mr. Gronseth was a boater and joined the United States Power Squadrons in Traverse City, earning a navigation certificate after taking a rigorous course.

He established scholarships in his parents’ memory at their alma maters. The scholarship for his mother is at Grinnell College in Grinnell, Iowa, and for his father at Albion College in Albion, Michigan, where Mr. Gronseth also studied. He graduated from the school in 1952 with a teaching degree, with concentrations in history and art.

Mr. Gronseth told Albion officials that he “just wanted to do something that would be a lasting tribute.”

“I knew how much he thought of his time at Albion,” he said of his father, Harold E. Gronseth, who died in 1962 in Suttons Bay. “It’s just a very satisfying thing for me, to know that there is something permanent and beneficial that I did while I was walking around this good earth.”

On his mother’s side, Mr. Gronseth was proud of his middle name – Roosevelt – and family ties to two presidents, Teddy and Franklin Roosevelt. Mr. Gronseth was a distant cousin of both presidents, just as his well-known relatives were to each other.

Mr. Gronseth moved with his mother, Alice Roosevelt Gronseth, to Perry in 1982. She died there in 1988.

In the 1970s, Mr. Gronseth made two transoceanic voyages to Europe, one aboard the Queen Elizabeth to England, and the other on the Leonardo da Vinci, a memorable trip with a number of celebrities aboard en route to the film festival in Cannes, France. He remembers sitting in the bar one evening with a journalist and spotting the famous Spanish artist, Salvador Dali, sitting with his wife at a nearby table. The journalist had been assigned to write about him and others, but he confessed that he was too frightened to approach the artist. Mr. Gronseth, who had written a paper about him in college, proclaimed: “I’m not.” He marched over to the table and chatted with Dali about his art. “He was pleasant,” Mr. Gronseth recalled.

Mr. Gronseth will be remembered for his wonderful storytelling, especially about family. He had an exceptional memory of family history from his childhood and beyond. He will also be remembered for his love of cars, trading them in about every two years for a new one.

“I never saw a car I didn’t want to buy. I had to have it,” he once said.

Mr. Gronseth’s first car was a 1937 Packard, a gift from his father in 1952. It was among his favorites, with its sleek lines, running boards and iconic hood ornament. He continued his love affair with cars, even later in life in Perry, where he once purchased, as he called it, “a tricked-out” 2008 Dodge pickup.

Survivors include cousins in several states, including Michigan.

Funeral services will be held on Saturday, Dec. 16 at 1 p.m. at Immanuel Lutheran Church, Suttons Bay, with visitation held one hour prior.  Burial will be held at a later date at the Lutheran Cemetery, Suttons Bay. 

Memorial gifts may be made to the Leelanau Historical Society, P.O. Box 246, Leland, MI 49654.

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