September 24, 2017

Elizabeth Ann Rice Peace, Died September 19, 2017

Elizabeth Ann Rice Peace
Died September 19, 2017

LELAND – Elizabeth Ann Rice Peace, 91, of Leland, passed away Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2017 at Munson Medical Center.
The loving and lovely wife of William Dunnett Peace.  Wonderful mother of Susan Peace Oliver and William Peace Jr.  Proud grandmother of Andrew Oliver, Megan Peace Vrabel, Elizabeth Oliver (deceased), Laura Oliver McElhinney, Jennifer Peace Landsberg, and Jonathan Peace.  Great-grandmother of Carson Vrabel, Kate Vrabel, Charlie Oliver, Quincey Vrabel, Hazel Elizabeth McElhinney, Catherine Oliver, Henry McElhinney, Dylan Landsberg, Milo Landsberg, Elizabeth “Libby” Ross Oliver and Julia Landsberg.
Known to all as Libby, she was born on Oct. 31, 1925, and raised in Cheshire, CT.  Upon graduation from Hamden High School in CT, Libby attended the University of Iowa and graduated from Russell Sage College in Troy, NY, where she met her future husband, Bill Peace.  Prior to their marriage in August 1948, she taught third grade in Cold Spring Harbor, NY.
After their wedding at the Congregational Church in Cheshire, Libby and Bill moved to Akron, OH.  Libby joined the Junior League, volunteered in numerous charities, learned to drive (not without peril to a few bushes) and happily produced their two children.
In 1953 Libby and Bill moved to Niles, Michigan.  Although she was sad to leave so many dear friends in Akron, this began a life-long love of Western Michigan.  In Niles, her life blossomed with service to her community.  At the First Presbyterian Church, Libby joined the Service League, was elected as an Elder and taught senior high school Sunday school for fifteen years with her husband, Bill.  Her English-major background made her a valued member of the Ladies Historical Society.  She volunteered with Meals-on-Wheels and at local migrant camps, teaching her children the value of community service with love.
Libby was an excellent bridge player, saving her winnings in a small black purse to use for presents for her family.  She played golf, tennis and platform tennis and was a keen swimmer.  Summer family vacations were spent among her many relatives on Long Island and in Northern Michigan on Lake Belaire.
In the early 1970’s, while visiting Akron friends, Laura Lee and Fred Heslop in Leland, MI, Libby and Bill impulsively purchased a vacation house on Sugar Bush Lane – and never looked back.  This and the house they subsequently purchased next door made Leland the Peace family gathering spot.
They moved to Leland permanently in the fall of 1982 and soon became involved in many aspects of the community, joining the Leland Community United Methodist Church.  Her volunteer efforts were various:  teaching “Great Books” at the Leland Public School; singing for a time in the Methodist Church choir; co-founding, with several others, “The Little Garden Club”; sharing the Chairmanship of the Leland Fourth of July Parade with Bill; and taking therapy dogs to the Assisted Living Facility in Northport with her grandchildren. 
Libby enthusiastically embraced cross-county skiing, played golf and swam every summer day in either Lake Leelanau or Lake Michigan.  She and Bill participated in Lamp Lighters and played couples bridge.  She became a member of The Colonial Dames of the United States in the 1980’s.
Libby and Bill spent some winter months on Amelia Island, FL, for twenty-eight years.  There they joined the Presbyterian Church and made many lasting friendships.  Libby continued her pet therapy work in the assisted living facility there and adopted her precious dog, Misty, from the local rescue facility.
Libby was a dear friend to many in the community and treasured their friendship in return.  In later years, she became a member of Donna Hearne’s Bible Study.  She has sadly resided in The Highlands in Northport since 2012, making new friends and becoming popular with the caring staff.
Libby was preceded in death by her parents, her siblings, Mary R. Beatty, Edward A. Rice and her granddaughter, Elizabeth P. Oliver in 1997.
Graveside services will be held at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 30 at Beechwood Cemetery.  Rev. Daniel Hofmann will officiate.
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September 20, 2017

William J. Irwin III Died Sept. 15, 2017

William J. Irwin III
Died Sept. 15, 2017

CEDAR – William Joseph Irwin III, 68, of Cedar, passed away Friday, Sept. 15, 2017 at Spectrum Health, Grand Rapids.

Bill was born on Dec. 3, 1948 in Detroit, the son of William Joseph and Louise Stevens (Woods) Irwin. 
Bill earned a B.S. in Economics and was active with the Knights of Columbus and Prospector’s Club, was past president of the Little Traverse Lake Assoc., and board of directors for General Credit Union.  Bill loved to talk and talk and talk which is fitting since he worked for Verizon for many years.  Afterwards, Bill didn’t really retire - instead, together with his sons, Bill ran Irwin Construction Co. building homes for his family in Leelanau County.   He loved his family and traveled with them all over the world to Mexico, Dominican Republic, and Marco Islands, FL.  Often Bill would be a backseat driver to his kids.

He never knew a stranger and could remember the smallest details and stories of people.  His outgoing nature could be seen in his smile and twinkle in his eyes.  Bill lived in the now and for the future.

Bill is survived by his children, William IV, Ryan, Shawn, and Michelle Irwin; grandchildren, William V and Conor Irwin; brother, Thomas; sisters, Mary Lou Landry, Margaret Bullington, and Catherine Irwin.

He was preceded in death by his parents and a sister, Dorothy Irwin.

Visitation will be held on Thursday, Sept. 21 from 2 to 4 p.m. and 6 to 8 p.m. with the rosary to be prayed at 7 p.m. at Martinson Funeral Home, Suttons Bay.  The funeral mass will be celebrated on Friday, September 22 at 11 a.m. with family greeting friends one-hour prior at St. Mary of the Assumption, Lake Leelanau.  Burial will follow at St. Mary Cemetery.  Fr. Bryan Medlin will serve as celebrant.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to the Leelanau Children’s Center, c/o Bill Irwin Scholarship Fund, P.O. Box 317, Leland, MI 49654. 

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September 18, 2017

Thomas A. Nell Died Sept. 2, 2017

Thomas A. Nell
Died September 2, 2017

LAKE LEELANAU – Thomas Allen Nell, 80, of Lake Leelanau went home to his Savior Saturday, Sept. 2, 2017.

Tom was born on Dec. 18, 1936 in Hanover, PA, the son of Chester and Kathryn (Pfaff) Nell.  On April 13, 1957 in Gettysburg, PA, he married Marilyn Ruof, who survives.

Tom earned a BA from Gettysburg College and a BSME from Penn State.  Upon graduation, he was a mechanical engineer with Pontiac Motor Division.  After leaving Pontiac, he started a new chapter and was a business owner of Tom Nell Bicycles, in partnership with his wife Marilyn, for 25 years.  In 1997, he retired and moved to his home in God's Country, with a beautiful view of Good Harbor Bay.

Tom was blessed with many God given talents:  Woodworking, including building a beautiful octagon porch; building performance engines for NASCAR, NHRA and SCCA; and racing mountain bikes and winning seven Michigan Mountain Biking Championships (in his class).  Tom was a member of LCUMC and previously served as church treasurer.  He was also a statistician, volunteer coordinator and past president of LCN.  In his spare time, he enjoyed playing cards with the Tuesday bridge group.

His achievements and kindness were countless, but he attributed his success to determination and to the Glory of God.

He was a loving husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather and friend to everyone.  He will be greatly missed.

In addition to his loving wife of 60 years, Tom is survived by his children, Jeff Nell, Cristi Nell, Vicki (Alan) Craker, and Richard Nell; eight grandchildren, Nick, Katrina, Zach, Windsor, Austin, Natalie, Jeremy (Heather), and Johnny; one great-grandson, Liam; and a brother, Phillip Nell of Russell, Iowa.

A celebration of Tom’s life will be held on Saturday, Sept. 30 at 1 p.m. at Leland Community UMC.  Rev. Daniel Hofmann will officiate.

Memorials may be directed to Leland Community United Methodist Church.

Please share memories and condolences at  Arrangements are with the Martinson Funeral Home & Cremation Services of Leelanau. 

Joan M. Rutherford Died Sept. 16, 2017

Joan M. Rutherford

Died Sept. 16, 2017

LAKE LEELANAU – Joan Mary Rutherford, 79, of Lake Leelanau, entered into Eternal Joy Saturday, Sept. 16, 2017 at her home with her loving family at her side.

Joan was born March 8, 1938, in Detroit, to Francis George Wallace Kearns and Sophia Angeline (Guzdzial) Kearns.  On Sept. 6, 1958 at St. Dennis Church of Royal Oak, she married John Frank Rutherford who survives.  They most enjoyed music and dancing together.  Her marriage was first with her and her love for John was beautiful.

Always the life of the party, you’d see Joan leading the conga line and toasting with a glass of Merlot!  Joan’s love of taking pictures and posting them online is treasured now more than ever in the memories they provide.  Joan was an excellent cook and would create huge Thanksgiving meals for upwards of forty people.  The kids especially remember her molasses cookies, kapusta, and pumpkin pies.

Her 12 grandchildren were her joy!  She was their fierce protector and confidant.  Meema had a way of praising her grandchildren and they all knew they were her favorite!  A lady of strong faith, Joan loved St. Mary’s Church and School.  She enjoyed the chicken dinners and playing bingo.  She was the director of the Leelanau County Chamber of Commerce and earned the Citizen of the Year award upon retirement.  An exceptional secretary and bookkeeper, she worked for Electric Motor Repair and Service and Harris Properties.  Her hobbies included Scrabble, Canasta, crosswords, journaling, and spending time with her grandchildren.

Joan is survived by her loving husband of fifty-nine years, John; her three children, Janine (Jeffrey) Winkler, Cindy Rutherford, Caroline (Basil) Bardenhagen; her siblings, Irene Atchison, Laura Wachlarz, Judy (Phil) Cunningham; her brothers and sisters in-law, Danny Paciocco, Richard (Sue) Rutherford, and Lyane Kearns; and her twelve grandchildren, Andrew Zeits (son of Cindy), Ellen, John, Steven, Maria, and Joseph Winkler, and Jack, Matthew, Sophia, Clarice, Lillian, and Francis Bardenhagen.

She was preceded in death by her parents; and her siblings, Kenneth and Larry Kearns and Jeanette Paciocco.

Visitation will be held Friday, Sept. 22 from 6 to 8 p.m. with the Rosary to be prayed at 7 p.m. at the Martinson Funeral Home of Suttons Bay.  The mass will be celebrated at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 23 at St. Mary’s Church of Lake Leelanau with the family greeting family and friends at 10 a.m.  Burial will follow in St. Mary’s Cemetery.  Father Bryan Medlin will serve as celebrant.

Memorials may be directed to The James Harris Memorial Scholarship, c/o David Baldwin, The Prospectors Club, 5600 W. MacFarlane Rd, Glen Arbor, MI 49636.

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