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Dorothy J. Signs

Dorothy J. Signs, age 89, passed away surrounded by her family on September 23, 2020. Dorothy graduated from Elsie High School in 1948, and on October 27, 1951 she married Raymond A. Signs Jr. at St. Cyril Catholic Church in Bannister. They raised their family together in St. Johns where Dorothy has resided since. Raymond passed away in 2002.

Dorothy was a strong woman with an enormous heart who worked tirelessly every day to love and care for her children and grandchildren. Her love extended to her many cousins, nieces, and nephews who were always part of her life. She took great joy in welcoming and feeding anyone who walked through her door, insisting they leave with arms full of food. She enjoyed flower gardening, playing Euchre, and dancing the polka. Unfiltered in her manner, she was led solely by her heart and will be remembered for the fun and extraordinary flare she added to all family gatherings. Dorothy’s gusto for life left an impression on everyone she met, and she will be greatly missed.

She is survived by her children, Marla (Charles) Signs-Rehmann of Petoskey, MI; Chris (John) Signs-Warstler of Boyne City, MI; Michelle (Sheldon) Parker of DeWitt, MI; Raymond (Annie Saules) Signs of Haslett, MI; Eric (Stephanie) Signs of Bath, MI; grandchildren, Alison (Shannon) Gillespie, Jacob Warstler, Joseph Parker, Jenna Parker, Molly Signs-Rehmann, Samuel Signs, Maxim Signs, Ella Signs, and Milo Signs; one great-grandchild, Simon Gillespie; and brothers, John Loznak and Edward (Doris) Loznak. She was preceded in death by her daughter Sandra Signs, 3 brothers, and 3 sisters. We are grateful for Dorothy’s adopted family: the caretakers of Rosewood AFC who filled her final months with love and laughter, and the Hospice staff whose guidance and compassion eased her journey.

A graveside service officiated by Fr. Mike Williams will be held at Hillcrest Memorial Gardens in Owosso at a later date. Memorials may be made to St. Vincent DePaul of St. Johns, because Dorothy always took care of people in need. Arrangements are by Keck-Coleman Funeral Home.


Nadine J. Watros

Nadine J. Watros, age 85 passed away on September 23, 2020. She was born on May 19, 1935 the daughter of Jim and Florence (Waggoner) Smith and was married to Gordon A. Watros on March 6, 1954 in Lansing. Nadine worked with her husband for over 45 years as the bookkeeper in their business, Watros Construction. She enjoyed doing interior decorating and design, bowling and playing cards. She was an avid fan of MSU events.

Surviving are her children, Jody Lynn (Dale) Wigginton and Mark A. Watros both of Lansing. 3 grandchildren, Danielle (James) Richardson, Kelly (Cj) Colon and Bryan (Steffanie) Watros; great grandchildren, Bryce Richardson, Kayla Crim and Skylar Watros and great-Great grandchildren, Meliah and Amelia Crim.

The family will receive friends and relatives at Keck-Coleman Funeral Home in St. Johns on Monday, September 28, 2020 2-4 and 6-8 P.M. Funeral services will be held at the funeral home on Tuesday, September 29, 2020 at 1:00 P.M. with Chris McNeilly officiating. Memorials may be given to the charity of the donor’s choice.


Cecilia Loydine Bird

Cecilia Loydine “Billie” Bird, 77, of Maple Rapids, MI, passed away Wednesday, September 23, 2020, at Laurels of Fulton in Perrinton, MI.

Billie was born in Los Angeles, CA on January 18, 1943, the daughter of Lloyd and Marilyn (Polkinghorne) Pennington. She graduated from Chula Vista High School, San Diego, CA with the class of 1961.

Billie married Gary Dee Bird on June 18, 1961, at Wedding Bell Chapel, San Diego, CA. Billie traveled with Gary all over the U.S. while he was serving in the U.S. Navy and in the Ministry. Throughout these years; she taught Sunday School, she was a Youth Sponsor, she drove a school bus for a couple of years, she worked at Walmart in St. Johns, and she worked at Beck’s Farm Market on US-27. But most of all she was a loving mother, grandmother and housewife.

She is survived by her husband Gary, her daughter Melissa (Marty) Wesner, and her favorite granddaughter Mariah Wesner; her two sisters Pam Schwank and Edy (Paul) Palumbo of Temecula, CA and many nieces and nephews.

The family is being served by Smith Family Funeral Homes – Osgood Chapel, St. Johns, MI.


Kenneth J. Osentoski

Kenneth J. Osentoski, age 76, passed away, unexpectedly, at his home on Wednesday, September 23, 2020. He was born on May 15, 1944 in Colfax Township, MI, the son of David C. and Eleanor F. (Ostrowski) Osentoski. He graduated from Ubly High School and received a BA degree from Ferris State College. On December 14, 1968 he married Lois M. Hull in Big Rapids, MI.

Ken taught Industrial Arts at St. Johns Public Schools for over 35 years and was active in the Clinton Northern Railroad Restoration program, the Clinton County Arts Council, enjoyed meeting with the tired teachers (lol) monthly at Swany’s, was a member of the Church of the Living Word in Ovid, was an avid reader, loved restoring his 1970 Chevy C10 Custom truck named “the Pickle,” loved playing euchre and, most of all, loved spending time with his grandchildren.

Surviving Ken are his wife, Lois, children Kathryn (Larry) Swartz of Manton, MI; Gayle (Roger) Griggs of St. Johns; Karen (Brad) Ingersoll of Rockford, MI and Joe Osentoski of Lansing. He has three grandchildren, Gabe, Gavin and Gideon Griggs. He is survived by one brother, Richard Osentoski, and two sisters, Evelyn Clor and Mary Ann Osentoski. He was preceded in death by sister Betty Osentoski and brother Donald Osentoski.

The family will receive friends and relatives at Keck-Coleman Funeral Home on Friday, September 25, 2020, 2-4 and 6-8 P.M. A memorial service will be held at Church of The Living Word, 1100 N. Ovid Rd., Ovid, MI on Saturday, September 26, 2020 at 11:00 A.M. with Pastor Audie Clairmont officiating. There will be a brief visitation period at 10:30 AM, before the service at the church. Memorial contributions may be made to Clinton Northern Railway Museum, 215 N. Clinton Ave., St. Johns, MI 48879.


Elizabeth Mary Schafer

Elizabeth “Betty” Mary Schafer, age 97, of Westphalia, passed away peacefully on September 22, 2020. Betty was born in Fowler, the daughter of Joseph W. and Anna R. (Werner) Thelen. She was a devoted member of St. Mary’s Catholic Church and the Christian Mother’s Society.

She is survived by her children, Mary (Roger) Dershem, Janet (Brent) Coffman, Rick (Patti) Schafer, Bob (Doris) Schafer, and Ron (Karen) Schafer; 16 grandchildren; 20 great-grandchildren; siblings, Stanley Thelen, Doris Andrews, Loretta (Jerry) Halm, Therese (Jules) Poirer, Francis (Jeanette) Thelen, and Marie Fox; in-laws, Bertine Thelen, Marie Thelen, and Mildred Schafer and many special nieces and nephews. Betty is preceded in death by her parents; beloved husband of 60 years, Raymond; son, Gerry Schafer; siblings, Paul (Mary Jane) Thelen, Leon Thelen, Alvin Thelen, Don Thelen, and Jerry Thelen; in-laws, Evelyn Thelen, Bernard Fox, and Richard Andrews.

The Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated by Rev. Eric Weber at 10:30 a.m., Friday, September 25, 2020 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Westphalia. Rite of Committal will follow at St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery. The family will receive friends on Thursday from 2-4 and 6-8 p.m. at the St. Mary’s Funeral Chapel, 210 N. Westphalia Street, Westphalia. Arrangements are entrusted to Lehman Funeral Homes.


Joann C. Walton

Joann C. Walton, age 72 passed away at her home on Sunday, September 20, 2020. Joann was born on April 4, 1948 in St. Johns, MI the daughter of Joseph and Jean (Abbott) Gavenda. She graduated from Fulton High School in 1966 and on July 16, 1966 she married Dale E. Walton. Joann was a homemaker, loved quilting, feeding the birds, deer hunting and loved being with her grandchildren.

Surviving her are her husband, Dale and children Gregory (Maureen) Walton of Indianapolis, IN., Scott (Krista) Walton of Perrinton, MI and Angela (Chris) Richards of St. Johns; grandchildren, Sarah, Samantha, Logan, Ethan Walton and Kimberly and Jesse Richards; her brothers, Joseph (Mary) Gavenda Jr. of Ashley and James (Linda) Gavenda of Maple Rapids, MI; brother in law, Larry Baker, sisters in law, Sue Gavenda, Jean Walton and Bette (Jim) Potts. She was preceded in death by her parents and sister, Jean Baker and brother Jerry Gavenda.

The Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11:00 A.M. Thursday, September 24, 2020, at St. Joseph Catholic Church, St. Johns, with Rev. Fr. Michael Williams as Celebrant. The Rite of Committal will follow at Eureka Cemetery.

The family will receive friends and relatives 2-4 and 6-8 P.M. on Wednesday, September 23, 2020. A Rosary/Vigil Service will be prayed at 7:00 P.M. at the Keck-Coleman Funeral Home. Memorials may be made to Elara Caring Hospice, 1011 S. US 27, St. Johns, MI 48879.


Joy B. Woodbury

Joy B. Woodbury, age 81, of St. Johns, MI, passed away Saturday, September 19, 2020 at her home.

A private family graveside service will be held at Union Home Cemetery, St. Johns, MI.

Joy was born in St. Johns, Michigan on September 13, 1939, the daughter of Asa Henry and Vera Ruth (Fry) Bigelow. She graduated from Ashley High School. Joy enjoyed traveling and trips to the casino. Joy enjoyed cooking and baking. She loved her family and cherished time spent with her grandchildren who called her Mia.

The family would like to express their thankfulness to granddaughter-in-law, Megan for all of her kind and loving care. They would also like to thank Karla and Barb for their visits and food.

She is survived by her daughters: Julie and Terry Brunner of Leslie, MI, Cindy and Ken Clark of St. Johns, MI, grandchildren: Joshua of St. Johns, MI, Jill and Phil Lee of Austin, TX, Andrew and Megan Heathman of Elsie, MI, Trevor Brunner of St. Johns, MI, Kenny and Calvin Clark of St. Johns, MI; great-grandchildren: AJ, Ashlynn, and Bentley. She is also survived by her siblings: Janice and Leo Thurston of St. Johns, MI, Jackie and Bill Miller of Ionia, MI, Asa “Butch” and Linda Bigelow of Portland, MI, Helen and Jerry Fisk of Panama City, FL, and many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents; husband Alan Woodbury Sr., and son Alan Woodbury Jr.

Memorials may be made to Owosso Memorial Homecare. The family is being served by Smith Family Funeral Homes – Osgood Chapel, St. Johns, Michigan.


Mark S. Grost

Mark S. Grost, 60, of Lansing Michigan, died at home in Lansing, Michigan on September 14, 2020. Mark was born in St. Johns, MI on September 29, 1959, the son of James (deceased) and Inge (Kuehl) Grost. He was a 1977 graduate of St. Johns High School in St. Johns, MI, and Michigan State University, receiving a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture and Natural Resources Communications.

Mark had an accomplished career working as a Branch Manager, General Manager, Divisional Human Resources Manager for local, Regional and National Lawn Care Services and Home Improvement Services. He excelled in the “people” part of these businesses and leveraged his communication skills with the “art of persuasion” for great success. He worked in Michigan, New England, and Florida.

Surviving are his 2 loving children: Jessica Grost, Nashville, TN; Bradley Grost, Chicago, IL Mother: Inge Grost, Traverse City, MI; 6 Siblings: Kathy (Ron) Sergeant, Higgins Lake, MI; Mike (Ann) Grost, Stevensville, MD; Lynne (Bob) Frye, Higgins Lake, MI; Eric (Dee) Grost, Traverse City, MI; Tim (Colleen) Grost, Clarkston, MI; Karen (Jerry) Taylor, Traverse City, MI; 14 Nieces and Nephews: Nick (Amber, Julia) Sergeant, George (Lexi) Frye, Mariah (Stu, Sayla, Henry) Colie, Joe (Haley, Gatlin, Aria) Frye, Jimmy (Shelby) Frye, Jake Taylor, Tim Taylor, Max Taylor, Kaitlin Grost, Daniel Grost, Chloe Grost, Scott (Ali) Grost, Brian Grost, Matthew Grost. Mark was preceded in death by his father James.

Mark enjoyed spending time with Brad and Jess. Specifically, he cherished coaching them through their youth sports and scholastic endeavors. He inspired extraordinary achievement as they progressed through college and into their professional careers. They were his passion and he was their biggest fan. Mark also enjoyed spending time with his family and friends. He cherished lifelong friendships – once a friend always a friend. He was a devoted fan of Michigan State University and supported Spartan Athletics whenever he could. He was a “super” fan attending hundreds of football and basketball games. He would never miss a televised game if he could not be there in person. Additionally, for recreation, Mark loved to walk sidewalks, trails, beaches and frozen lakes. As a devoted Spartan fan, he thoroughly enjoyed tailgating with friends and family – it was always a huge part of the gameday ritual.

To honor Mark, “pay it forward” with a random act of kindness, to someone in need. The family is being served by Gorsline Runciman DeWitt Chapel.


Mabel Beck

Mabel Beck, age 94, of Maple Rapids, passed away Tuesday, September 15, 2020 at Country Friends Adult Foster Care. She was born February 28, 1926 in Clinton County the daughter of Frederick and Edna (Bartlett) Schavey. She married Roy Beck in 1948. She was a faithful member of the Maple Rapids Baptist Church, volunteering with funeral dinners and VBS. She enjoyed baking and collecting porcelain dolls.

Mabel is survived by a son, Bob (Sheila) Beck; three grandchildren, Michelle (Mark) Rosendale, Angela (Kyle) Graham, Kristie (Randy) Johnston; seven great-grandchildren; and one great-great-grandchild. She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Roy: a son, Wayne Beck; and her siblings, Gaylord, Louis, Dorothy, Vera, Viola and Millie.

Funeral services will be held on Monday, September 21, 2020 at 12 pm at Dodge Funeral Home, Middleton with Pastor Steve Lang officiating. Interment will be held at a later date in Eureka Cemetery. Visitation will be held on Monday from 10 am until the time of services at the funeral home. Those desiring may make memorial donations to Country Friends Adult Foster Care, 10481 Buchanan Rd., Sumner, MI 48889.


Divorce decrees filed the week of September 14, 2020

Donovan, Susan A / Donovan, Joseph G.

McCombs, Elizabeth A. / McComb, David W.

San Miguel, Melissa / San Miguel, Alexander

Thomas, Samantha A. / Thomas, Bryan G.

Johnson, Jennifer L. / Johnson, James M.

Basinger, Tiffany E. / Basinger, Elisha T.

Koschmider, Amy M. / Koschmider, Michael W.

Kramer, Rebecca M. / Kramer, Jeffrey J.

MacLennan, Amber L. / MacLennan, Keith R.

Nelson, Sandra M. / Nelson, Adrian J.