Thomas L. Hall
Thomas Lee Hall, 73, of Bellevue, passed away peacefully surrounded by his loved ones on Tuesday, March 30, 2021. He was born April 10, 1947 in Charlotte to Paul and Donna (Hampton) Hall. After graduating from Charlotte High School, he was drafted into the U.S. Army serving from 1966 to 1968. When he returned to Charlotte, Tom started an apprenticeship with LCC becoming a painter, and later started his own business alongside his father, Paul, becoming another in the long line of family painters. “Tom Hall Painting” was in business over 50 years, and painted almost every house in Charlotte during that time.
With many interests and hobbies, Tom was a wealth of knowledge that he was ready to share at any given moment from his mental archives. He learned through experience, always participating and never one to just sit on the sidelines and watch. To his family’s surprise, Tom secretly learned how to play the guitar. The family was so excited that they formed a family band, practicing in the basement, and even playing at a few local venues. Tom loved to fish and hunt, and his grandkids share stories of taking their first deer while hunting with their grandpa. A devoted family man, Tom very much enjoyed time spent with family and friends, making even the simplest moments memorable.
Tom is survived by his wife of 51 years, Helen; children, Misty Harris and Holly (Andrew) Allen; grandchildren, Paul Walker-Hall (Samara Simmons), Chassity (Tanner) McNelly, Paige (Jean) Lizaire, Marranda Mitchell, and Drue Allen; great-grandchildren, Ava, Malaya, and Hendrix; mother, Donna (Tom) Salik; siblings, Ed (Linda) Hall, Mary (Pat) Schneider, and Rebecca (Ed) Magoon. Tom was preceded in death by his father, Paul Hall.
Friends are encouraged to share memories of Tom on histribute page at PrayFuneral.com, or by attending services. Visitation is in the Pray Funeral Home Garden, 401 W. Seminary St., Charlotte, MI on Tuesday, April 6, 2021, 3-5:00 p.m., with a Memorial Service at 5:00 p.m. Mask, group capacity, and distancing guidelines will be practiced. The family is in the care of Pray Funeral Home.
Robert L. Eitniear
Robert “Bob” Lloyd Eitniear, 87 of Dimondale, died March 28, 2021. He was born in Dimondale on May 7, 1933 to Merle and Flossie (Hart) Eitniear. In 1956 he married Roberta Button and they had two children, Colene and Robert II “Robbie.” Bob was a talented builder, and he could make just about anything. Officially retiring from building in 1994, Bob had more time for the other things in life he enjoyed, including hunting, drawing, watching wildlife, feeding and watching the birds and squirrels at home, cooking (he especially loved the family and neighborhood pig roasts with the roaster he built), and making things for people with his building skills.
Bob is survived by his daughter, Colene (Mike) Foster; grandchildren, Jamie (Dustin) Howard, Zach (Diana) Foster, and Josh (Tab) Foster; six great-grandchildren, Mallory, Kaylee, Luke, Agnes, Mason, and Avery; siblings, Shirley Gilbert, Jake Eitniear, and Ann (Wayne) Vahs, and many nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his wife, Roberta; son, Robert “Robbie” Lloyd Eitniear II; his parents; siblings, Wayne and Ted Eitniear; and special-friend, Phyllis Harkins.
Friends are encouraged to support Bob’s family by sharing memories on his tribute page at PrayFuneral.com. A celebration of life is being planned. If desired, the family suggests memorial contributions to a college fund for his great-grandchildren (checks payable to Colene). The family is in the care of Pray Funeral Home, Charlotte.
Phyllis J. Landis
Phyllis Jean Landis, of Charlotte, passed away March 28, 2021 at the age of 84, surrounded by loved ones. Phyllis was born October 21, 1936 in Payne, Ohio to Marion and Adah (Brewer) Fisher into a large family that included six brothers and one sister. She married Jimmy D. Landis in 1956 and together they had many adventures. Many around Charlotte may remember Phyllis from the Charlotte Eagles, where she had been a member for 46 years; bowling at CharLanes; drove bus for Charlotte Public Schools, and she tended bar at several establishments over the years. Phyllis enjoyed trips to the casino, traveling with her group of friends, the “Big 6,” and especially time she spent with her family.
Phyllis is survived by her daughters, Debbie (Fred) Hayes, Rhonda (Martin) Procko, and Shelley Sommer; grandchildren, Kristin McHale, Jimmy (Michelle) McHale, Nicholas (Heather) Cantin, Katie James, Alex Sommer, and Grant Sommer; great-grandchildren, Harper and Max Cantin, Beckham James, and Lyla McHale; and “Bestest Life-Long Pals,” Wanetta Wolever and Pat Crandell. She was predeceased by her husband, Jimmy; all of her siblings; and her parents.
Friends are encouraged to support Phyllis’s family by attending visitation or funeral services or sharing memories on her tribute page at PrayFuneral.com. Funeral services were Friday, April 2, 11 a.m. at Pray Funeral Home in Charlotte with Pastor Charles Jenson officiating. Mask, group capacity, and distancing guidelines will be practiced. If desired, the family suggests memorial contributions to Eaton Community Palliative Care or Eaton County Humane Society. The family is in the care of Pray Funeral Home, Charlotte.
Jason “Cody” Zinser, 49, of Clare, Mich., passed away unexpectedly in Tonopah, Arizona on Friday, March 26, 2021 and passed from this life into eternal life. Cody was born the son of James “Jim” M. and Margaret “Maggie” A. (White) Zinser on September 23, 1971, in Mt. Pleasant, Mich. Cody was a graduate of the class of 1990 at Clare High School. His high school friends were still some of his best friends.
Most of his life he worked alongside his family that owned J-Bar-J Rodeo. He was a member of the International Pro Rodeo Association and then moved on to the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association. He was honored to be selected to work the Great Lakes Circuit Finals in Louisville, Ky. as a pick-up man and he also reached the pinnacle of his career by making the Great Lakes Circuit Finals in the steer wrestling in 2000. He was known as one of the best pickup men around, someone you could count on to have your back in and out of the arena. He loved his horses he rode. His lifelong rodeo horse, Hero, at age 31 is still on the ranch. After rodeo, he worked as a Heavy Equipment Operator with Operating Engineers Local 324. He also worked for Central Michigan Contracting, the Dunkle family.
Cody was a member of the NRA, and enjoyed fishing, hunting and water sports including Air Chair. Although childless he loved children and they loved him. His niece, Jayce, was his pride and joy. Cody spoiled his friend’s kids and was just like one of the kids anytime he was around them. He cherished them all and shared his favorite candy, Jolly Ranchers, with them. Cody dedicated his life to Jesus Christ in 2018 and showed a true desire to change his life. Those that knew Cody know that he lived life to the fullest.
Cody is survived by his parents, Jim and Maggie Zinser; his sister, Shannon Zinser and her fiancé Jack Taylor, favorite niece Jayce Jordan and nephew Cody Jack Taylor.
Cody was preceded in death by his brother, Michael Fred Zinser in 1970, and his grandparents, Joe and Leona White, and Fred (Dutch) and Ellen Zinser. A celebration of Cody’s life will be held at the J Bar J Ranch, 6731 E. Coleman Road, Clare, Mich. on Saturday, June 19, 2021 at 1 p.m. In lieu of flowers, memorials are suggested to the Justin Cowboy Crisis Fund, justincowboycrisisfund.org/ or Western Days Ministry, westerndaysministries.org/donate. Arrangements were handled by the Clare Chapel of Stephenson-Wyman Funeral Home. On-line condolences may be left at stephenson-wyman.com.
Gerald C. Elliott
Gerald Charles Elliott, a devoted and loving husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather, died Wednesday, March 31, 2021 surrounded by his family. Gerald, 90, of Potterville, was born May 11, 1930, in Battle Creek, MI, the son of James and Salina (Eakin) Elliott. He proudly served his country during the Korean War. Upon his return on May 22, 1953, he married Lala Reaves and together they spent the next 50 years creating their legacy together. Gerald worked at General Motors for 30 years, retiring in 1988. He also owned the Hill Top Trailer Park with his brother for 30 years. Gerald enjoyed going out and dancing with Lala, wintering in Frost Proof, Florida, watching his grandchildren play in the marching band. He was a generous man who created a scholarship fund for children attending community college. Above all he loved his family.
Gerald is survived by his daughters, Brenda Elliott, Diane (Roger) Moening, Dawn (Terry) Johnson, Sherry (Jeff) Humes; 11 grandchildren; 19 great-grandchildren; sister, Maxine Wynegar. He was predeceased by his wife, Lala; 6 siblings; several extended family members; and his good friend Francis Arnold.
Friends are encouraged to support Gerald’s family. Funeral services are Friday, April 9, 2021, at 1:00 p.m. at Pray Funeral Home Gardens in Charlotte with Pastor Lloyd Scharer officiating. Visitation will take place two hours prior to the service from 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. Interment will take place at Chapel Hill Memorial Gardens. Mask, group capacity, and distancing guidelines will be practiced. The funeral will be webcast so you may watch it from any computer, smartphone, or mobile device that has internet access. Go to www.prayfuneral.com, click on Gerald’s tribute, then click on Photos and Videos from your computer (or Media from your smart phone). If desired, the family suggests memorial contributions to Eaton Area Humane Society. Friends and family are encouraged to share memories of Gerald on his Tribute Page at www.PrayFuneral.com. The family is in the care of Pray Funeral Home, Charlotte.
Jerry L. Franklin
Jerry Lynn Franklin, kind, generous, sweet and always smiling, died March 23, 2021 at the age of 79. Jerry, of Dimondale, was born March 20, 1942 in Lansing to Garald C. and Beatrice (Carver) Franklin. Jerry loved to be part of the fun with his family. Camping, square dancing, cross-country skiing, belly dancing, hunting, and snowmobiling were a few of the activities shared. He was a member of the Chief Okemos Shooting Club. Jerry and his family enjoyed time together at their cottage on Houghton Lake, and wintered in Gulf Shores, Alabama. He knew everyone, and he was loved by everyone. If you knew him well, you knew that he loved Jif Peanut Butter on everything.
Jerry is survived by his wife, Connie; children, Bryon (Brenda) Franklin, Pamela (Timothy) Sibley, Melony Ann Fronckel; grandchildren, Stephanie, Timmy, Jessica, Christopher, Travis, Paige, Roxanna and Ryan, Jacob, Ashley; eight great-grandchildren; siblings, Eileen Fritts, Patricia (Robert) Green, Rex Franklin; sister-in-law, Kathy Franklin. He was predeceased by his first wife, Judy; brothers, Dewight (Sally) and Ronald Franklin; parents, brother-in-law, Bud Fritts; and sisters-in-law, Evelyn Franklin, and Kandy Franklin.
Friends are encouraged to support Jerry’s family by sharing memories on his tribute page at PrayFuneral.com. A private family memorial service will be held at a later date. Special thanks to Fred and Dixie Robins, Carl and Debbie Collins, and the Dimondale Community for their support to the family. If desired, the family suggests memorial contributions be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital or to The Eaton County Humane Society. The family is in the care of Pray Funeral Home, Charlotte.
Maxine (McDaniel) Crafton of Eaton Rapids passed away March 28, 2021 at the age of 93. She was born in Fredonia, Kansas on February 29, 1928, the daughter of Oscar and Della (Mallonee) McDaniel. Maxine was a member of Calvary Evangelical Lutheran Church and The Jean Bradford Kline Senior Center. She enjoyed baking, any type of needlework, vegetable gardening, playing games, including Bunco and occasionally Fire Keepers Casino.
Maxine is survived by her children, Darlene, Donald (Susan Ohmer), Ronald, Kenneth (Benita), and Mark (Beth) Crafton; five grandchildren; three great-grandchildren and sister, Marie Francka. She was preceded in death by her parents; husband, John B. Crafton; brother, Nathan McDaniel and granddaughter, Christina Crafton.
Funeral services will be held 11 a.m. on Saturday, April 3, 2021 at Calvary Evangelical Lutheran Church, 10500 Plains Rd., Eaton Rapids, with Pastor Mark Eckert officiating. Interment will follow in Rosehill Cemetery. Visitation will be held one hour prior to the service at the church. For those desiring, memorial contributions may be made to donor’s choice of charity in memory of Maxine Crafton. Online condolences and memories may be shared at millsfuneral.com.
Jack G. Jesse
Jack Glen Jesse, 74, went home to be with his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, after a five-year battle with metastatic prostate cancer on March 30, 2021. Jack leaves behind numerous friends and family members who loved him dearly.
He was born on July 3, 1946. Jack grew up to be a valued educator, receiving his BA and MS degrees from Michigan State University and his PhD in Counseling Psychology from Columbia Pacific University. He taught at four different mid-Michigan colleges, including Lansing Community College, Michigan State University, Great Lakes Bible College, and Sienna Heights University in the Graduate Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program. Jack was also a Clinical Social Worker in Charlotte, and Director of his own private practice, Ingham Behavioral Health and Healing (formerly Miracles Unlimited) in Lansing.
Jack was baptized as a young man and his relationship with Jesus Christ led him into a life of service. His family, friends, clients, and students benefitted from his servant’s heart, his endless energy, and his positive attitude, which was contagious. Jack was a forgiving man who always encouraged those he met. No matter their past, Jack always saw the best in people and valued them.
Jack had a multitude of interests. He loved animals, gardening, art, music, and he had a particular passion for writing and creating. He loved his family dearly and he wanted them to know that God and family were always his most important priorities, despite all his other accomplishments.
Jack is survived by his wife of 28 years, Elizabeth; children, Jaremy (Maureen), Heidi, Andrew (Kami), Cody, Chase; stepchildren, James (Krista), Heather, Michael (Lisa), Andrew (Erin), nine beautiful grandchildren; brother and sister-in-law, James and Jeanette Jesse; as well as nieces and nephews and many dear in-laws and friends.
Jack was preceded in death by his father and mother, James and Pauline (VanEvery) Jesse.
Jack will be cremated, and a private family service held at a later date. For those desiring, memorial contributions may be made to a homeless shelter of your choice in memory of Jack. To share memories or leave condolences please visit SkinnerFuneralHomes.com.
Joyce Y. Dunn Schmidt
Joyce Yvonne Dunn Schmidt went home to Jesus on March 30, 2020 at the age of 83.
Joyce was born to Nora Louise and George Dunn on April 11, 1937 in Dermott, Ark. She met William Thomas Schmidt on a blind date in Memphis, Tenn. and immediately knew Tom was “the one.” Tom and Joyce were married for 59 years and had three children: David, Deborah, and Pamela. In addition to being a loving wife and mother, Joyce graduated from the Methodist Hospital School of Nursing in Memphis, Tennessee and was a Registered Nurse. She spent her professional career caring for people and was proud of her work. Throughout her entire life Joyce held an unwavering faith in God and in the spirit of her name, Joyce shared the joy of the Lord with all those who knew her. Joyce was a member of Church of the Nazarene in Eaton Rapids. She served her church in numerous other capacities by teaching Sunday school and being the director of Women’s ministry. Growing up, Joyce was an athlete and an amazing basketball player. Her hobbies included sewing quilts and caring for her house cactus plants. Joyce most enjoyed spending time with her husband and family.
Joyce joins her daughter Deborah Arnold and her parents George and Louise Dunn in Heaven. Joyce is survived by her husband, William Thomas Schmidt; son, David (wife Liz) Schmidt of Memphis, Tennessee and her daughter Pamela (husband Tony) McDaniel of Eaton Rapids. Joyce had twelve grandkids and five great-grand kids who were her pride and joy.
Funeral services were held at 1 p.m. on Friday, April 2, 2021 at the Mills Funeral Home, Shelly-Odell Chapel, located at 518 S. Main St. in Eaton Rapids, with Pastor Harold Demott officiating. Interment will follow in Rosehill Cemetery. Visitation was held one hour prior to the service at the funeral home. For those desiring, memorial contributions may be made to The Church of the Nazarene, 2225 S Michigan Rd., Eaton Rapids, MI 48827, in memory of Joyce. To place online condolences or memories please visit millsfuneral.com.
Tyrell A. Kennedy
Tyrell Arthur Kennedy of Eaton Rapids passed away unexpectedly on Wednesday, March 24, 2021 at the age of 38. Ty was born on March 3, 1983 in Lansing, the second son of Rhonda (Balzer) Kennedy and Todd Kennedy. He was raised in Eaton Rapids where he attended school and excelled in sports, playing varsity basketball and baseball for three years and graduating with the class of 2002. After high school Ty attended Ferris State University before joining the Army National Guard, his service included two separate tours to Iraq. He worked for Spartan Motors in Charlotte and most recently worked for Titleist in San Diego, Calif. Ty was passionate about golf and played numerous courses throughout Michigan, California, Arizona and Nevada. He was a loyal friend, brother, and son and would do anything for the people he cared about.
Ty is survived by his mother, Rhonda Kennedy of Eaton Rapids; brother, Thad (Jamie) Kennedy of Eaton Rapids; nieces, Hailey and Sophia Kennedy; aunts and uncles, Andy and Cindy Smith, Diane and Al Cooper, Stephanie and Jerry Platte and Ty, Kim, Karla and Kathy Kennedy and numerous cousins and friends.
A private family service was held on Thursday, April 1. To share memories or leave condolences please visit SkinnerFuneralHomes.com.