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Phyllis Jean Rhoades


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Phyllis Jean Rhoades, 76, of Charlotte, passed away peacefully on July 25, 2023, surrounded by her family.
Phyllis was born on August 10, 1946, in Charlotte, Michigan, the daughter of Leon and Gladys (Lamoreaux) Mathias. On February 23, 1974, she married William (Bill) Rhoades, and together in their 49 years of marriage, had two sons, Dustin and Steven, who were her world, second to her grandchildren.

Throughout the years, Phyllis worked at several places in Charlotte, and retired from Meijer in 2019. She had a passion for her co-workers and customers, and was lovingly nicknamed “Mrs. Meijer” by her son, Steven.
Phyllis’s friendship (and her good-natured antics) made everyone she knew feel special and loved, and brought her so much joy. For those lucky enough to know her, the world will be a little less bright without her, “Hi Honey, how are you doing? and her hugs, and peanut butter balls.

Phyllis was preceded in death by her parents, four sisters, five brothers, and her faithful four-legged companions, Sissy Sue, Brutus Lee, and Max.

She is survived by her husband, Bill; sons, Dustin (Jennifer) and Steven (Julie); along with her world’s greatest joys, her grandchildren, Emily, Garrett, and Eli.

A memorial visitation for family and friends will be held on her birthday, Thursday, August 10, 2023, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Burkhead-Green-Kilgo Funeral Home.

Those desiring may make contributions in memory of Phyllis to the Eaton County Humane Society, 129 N. Main St., Olivet, MI 49076.

To view Phyllis’s obituary online or to leave a condolence for the family please visit

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Jerry Ross Robinson


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Jerry Ross Robinson passed away on July 31, 2023, at Rose Arbor Hospice. He was born on July 18, 1943, in Battle Creek, Michigan, the son of William D. Robinson and Jane L. (Sterling) Robinson. On March 2, 1974, Jerry married Marcia L. Parr in Battle Creek.

After graduating from Battle Creek Central High School, Jerry spent his career as a lab technician, scheduler and logistics manager at Michigan Carton Corporation, retiring in 2003. That career was briefly interrupted when he was drafted by the Army as a helicopter mechanic from 1965 to 1967. After retirement from Michigan Carton, he enjoyed driving a variety of cars as a porter for the Henkel Auto Group before retiring again in 2018. He also enjoyed road trips to visit his grandchildren, league bowling, card games, feeding birds, watching Detroit sports and fishing.

He is preceded in death by his parents and sister, Alice Montague. He is survived by his wife, Marcia; son, Brent (Angela) Robinson of Cleveland, Ohio; two grandchildren; and sister, Mary Jo Goulet of Phoenix, AZ.

Visiting hours will be held from 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. on Saturday, August 19, 2023, and a remembrance service to follow at 12:00 p.m. at the Baxter Funeral and Cremation Service.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Battle Creek Community Foundation. (

Arrangements entrusted to the Baxter Funeral and Cremation Service, 269-788-9800.

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Susan Maria Vogel


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Susan Maria Vogel of Eaton Rapids, passed away July 31, 2023, at the age of 75 surrounded by her loved ones after a short illness. Susan was born on April 20, 1948, in Grand Rapids, MI, the daughter of Robert and Cora (Van Prooyen) Reynolds. As an elementary teacher for over 25 years, Susan valued the education of her students and her family. She received a Master’s in Administration at CMU and inspired all her daughters to dream big and achieve their dreams. Susan enjoyed reading, knitting, and ornament making. She made all of her grandchildren’s stockings. She also loved hunting and fishing with her husband Jim. She had a hard time holding out for the big bucks, scoring many a doe. Her motto was “if it’s brown, it’s down.” Susan’s greatest love was her family. She met the love of her life Jim the summer before heading to CMU. They married in 1971 and enjoyed 52 wonderful years of marriage. Susan doted upon her four daughters, passing down her life knowledge, her passion for life, and her love for Christ.

Susan is survived by her husband of 52 years, James Vogel of Eaton Rapids; four daughters, Lisa Stadler, Dr. Michelle (Bill Scott) Vogel, Dr. Amanda (David) Pratt, Sara Vogel; seven grandchildren, Isaac (Kovey), Olivia, Luke, Colin, Noah, Liam and Alex; sister, Linda (William) Critchell. She was preceded in death by her parents.
Visitation was held on Friday, August 4, 2023, from 5-7 p.m. and services will be held at Robbins United Methodist Church in Eaton Rapids, Saturday, August 5, 2023, at 11:00 a.m. with visitation one hour prior. For those desiring, memorial contributions may be made to Hearts and Hands Food Pantry or Donor’s Choice of a local Education Fund in loving memory of Susan Maria Vogel. Arrangements were entrusted to the Mills Funeral Home, Shelly-Odell Chapel in Eaton Rapids. To leave condolences for the family, please visit our website

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Gail Ann Bowyer


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Gail Ann Bowyer, age, 91, passed away peacefully in her sleep at her home in Eaton Rapids, MI on July 30, 2023. Born on December 2, 1931, in Eaton Rapids, MI, the daughter of Theodore and Doris (Martin) Lyons.
Gail was a graduate of Eaton Rapids High School class of 1950 and went on to receive a bachelor’s degree in bookkeeping from Western Michigan University. She served as a bookkeeper for Ackley, Peters, Haubert Insurance in Eaton Rapids for many years.

Known for her warm and outgoing nature, Gail was a true people person. During her children’s younger years, she took on the roles of both cub scout and girl scout troop leader, imparting valuable life lessons to the next generation.

Gail was an active member of the senior coffee group, where she enjoyed the friendships that were made during her regular gatherings at McDonalds. Her heart was filled with love for dogs, and over the years, she shared her home with several different chihuahuas. Beyond her love for animals, Gail found joy tending to her flower collection and had a special fondness for orchids.

She is survived by her children, Martin (Pauline) Bowyer, Sue Bowyer Arthurs; one brother, Norman (Sandy) Lyon and sister, Ardyce (Roger) Walser. Gail was preceded in death by her parents and husband, Don Bowyer.
A private committal service will be held at Oakwood Cemetery at a later date. For those desiring, memorial contributions may be made to Ingham County Animal Shelter. To share memories or leave online condolences please visit

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Richard Duane Foster


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Richard Duane Foster passed away Tuesday, July 25, 2023 at the age of 89. Richard was born April 8, 1934, to Bert Ray and Frances Helen (Ritter) Foster in Lansing, MI.
After living in Saginaw for a short time, the family moved to the Lansing area where he attended Valley Farms Elementary School, Pattengill Jr. High, and Eastern High School. He graduated with the class of 1952. While in high school he spent half a day at the Technical School where he received awards. He entered a tool and die apprenticeship at Adams Tool and Engineering. After working there for thirteen years he was a foreman at Michigan Magnetics in Vermontville. While there, he began acquiring the equipment he needed to launch his own business, Foster Tool Products.

He moved the business from its first Potterville location on M-100 to a new building on Lansing Rd. He made a change from tool and die to designing and making molds for plastic injection parts. In 1988, the State of Michigan decided it needed the property for highway I-69. So, with that it closed the door on that part of his life. He invested in a new business in Potterville, 21st Century Plastics, where he had many friends. As part of the Potterville community, he served on the Chamber of Commerce as well as ten years on the Benton Township Fireboard.

The family enjoyed many trips in the 1948 Ryan Navion 4-seater airplane that Richard piloted with skill for fifty years. A favorite destination was Beaver Island. The list of friends and family who “took a ride” with Richard is long. Several out of state trips took the family to Oklahoma, Wisconsin, Florida, and Massachusetts. Trips in the mini motorhome to California, Arizona, and North Carolina. The most recent trips were to Ireland twice and an Alaskan cruise with family.

After high school when all of his friends were buying “made in Michigan” cars he decided he wanted something different. From an ad in Popular Mechanics, he ordered the body and frame to a car named Woodill Wildfire Roadster. Only 100 were made in California. Originally he had a flathead Ford engine in the Wildfire, then in 1957 he found out that Chevrolet was coming out with the Corvette with a fuel injected engine, he wanted one of those engines. Through the Chevrolet dealership in Shepherd, he was able to acquire one from the Racing Division of Chevrolet. On August 10, 1957, he was lined up for the parade in the Shepherd Centennial when it was announced that a girl was needed to ride with him. That girl turned out to be his future wife, Jeanette Hynes of Shepherd; they married on December 21, 1957, and this began 65 years of marriage.

The Wildfire drew attention and awards including trophies in Kalamazoo, Detroit, and the old Lansing Civic Center. He also used to drag-race the car in Stanton winning all races he entered! The Wildfire underwent an extensive restoration in 2010 followed by Concours’ de Elegance car shows in Milwaukee, WI, Des Moines, IA, and Amelia Island Florida. The island show was a world-class show where Richard took first place in a class called “Forgotten Fiberglass.”

Richard was a resident of Hope Landing Assisted Living in Charlotte, MI for the past three and a half years.

Richard is survived by his wife, Jeanette Dale (Hynes) Foster of Charlotte, MI; children: Duane Gordon Foster of Milwaukee, OR; Dale (Terri) Richard Foster of Bellevue, MI; Janice Elaine (Foster) LaDuca of Milwaukee, OR; grandkids: Andrew Ray (Carman) Foster of Perry, MI; Anna Janelle Foster of Potterville, MI; great-grandkids: Gage Anthoni Foster of Perry, MI, and Reegan Elizabeth Foster of Perry, MI.

He was preceded in death by his parents, sibling Norrine (Foster) Waterman, and nephew Jeffrey Waterman.

The family received friends on Friday, July 28, 2023, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Burkhead-Green-Kilgo Funeral Home. A graveside service will be held on Saturday at 11 a.m. at the West Carmel Cemetery.

Those desiring may make contributions in Richard’s memory to the Helping Hands Food Pantry, 621 Jefferson St., Charlotte, MI 48813 or the Potterville Benton Township District Library, 150 Library Lane, Potterville, MI 48876.

To view Richard’s obituary online or to leave a condolence for the family please visit


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William L. Klei


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William L. Klei, born on February 12, 1945, in Detroit, MI, to Roy and Virginia Klei, passed on July 22, 2023. Bill, as he was affectionately known to his friends and family, was not one to seek the limelight, but his life was marked by quiet excellence and precision in all that he did.

Bill graduated from Charlotte High School in 1963, where he was a standout on the baseball team, earning the admiration of his peers. Following high school, he pursued higher education at Western Michigan University until he joined the Army and served during the Vietnam war.

After his military service, Bill worked for DBI Office Furniture in Jackson and Lansing. As a salesperson and designer, he put his meticulous nature to good use, ensuring that his work was always of the highest quality.

After he retired Bill spent his time fixing everything from household odds and ends to the tractors on his farm. In his earlier years he excelled in cross country motorcycle racing in northern Michigan and the Upper Peninsula, earning awards and trophies for his accomplishments. He also was a great Dart player – throwing darts at competitions throughout Michigan.

When not busy with work or fixing things, Bill loved spending time with his friends, often gathering around his BBQ and smoker to prepare mouthwatering delicacies. Whether it was a family birthday celebration or any other festivity, Bill was the go-to person for orchestrating the food, making sure that everyone left with full hearts and satisfied appetites.

Bill was an active member of the community, dedicated to serving and supporting his fellow veterans and neighbors. He was a proud member of the Charlotte Fraternal Order of Eagles Aerie 3552, where he found camaraderie and a sense of belonging among like-minded individuals. Bill’s commitment to honoring and remembering his fellow service members led him to be an esteemed member of both the Maple City VFW Post 2406 in Charlotte and the Charlotte American Legion Greenawalt-Flaherty Post 42.

Bill is preceded in death by his mother, Virginia; and his stepfather, Ed Simek; his father, Roy Klei of Detroit, MI; and his loyal dog, Becky. Bill is survived by his sister, Marilyn Uhl; fiancée, Nancy Granger; his beloved dog, Sammy; and numerous cousins, and many friends, all of whom will cherish the memories of this remarkable man. His legacy will continue through the lives he touched and the memories he left behind.

A Memorial Life Celebration will be held at the Charlotte Eagles 3552 on August 6, 2023, 1:00 p.m. as we come together to honor the life of this humble yet extraordinary individual. Those who wish to pay tribute to Bill’s memory can make contributions to the Charlotte Eagles Aerie 3552 or share memories on his tribute page at

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Wendell Elwood Frantz


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Wendell Elwood Frantz, age 94, of Charlotte, went home to be with his Lord and Savior in the early morning hours of Friday, July 21, 2023. He was born December 18, 1928, in Hastings, the son of Royal and Rosa (Smalley) Frantz. Wendell was raised in Sunfield and graduated from Sunfield High School with the Class of 1948. On July 10, 1954, he married the love of his life, Norma Mae Grant at the Chester Gospel Church. Wendell loved all things outdoors. Whether it was farming, cutting wood, or enjoying a day fishing at the lake, he loved it all. Wendell worked the majority of his life as a farmer and grounds keeper at Michigan State University. He also loved playing softball and baseball in his younger years. Wendell’s faith was very important to him. Both he and Norma are long time members of Chester Gospel Church.

Wendell is survived by his wife of 69 years, Norma; children, Thomas (Jolie) Frantz of Marshall, Timothy (Lynda) Frantz of Charlotte, Tamara (James) Dreps of Olivet, Todd Frantz of Potterville; grandchildren, Nicole (Erick) Fleming, Nisae (Jason) Williamson, Jeremy (Ellen) Dreps, Joshua (Taylor) Dreps, Emilee Steele, Allison Frantz, Darcy Frantz; six great-grandchildren; sister, Gwen Shelley; and numerous nieces, nephews and friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents; siblings, Beverly Welton, Bethel (Raymond) Stambaugh, Eleanor (Leonard) Dayton.

A memorial service was held on Friday, July 28, 2023, at 11 a.m. at the Chester Gospel Church. The family received friends on Thursday from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Burkhead-Green-Kilgo Funeral Home and one hour prior to the service at the church on Friday.

Those desiring may make contributions in Wendell’s honor to the Lansing City Rescue Mission or the Chester Gospel Church (to the benefit of Ethnos 360 for Jason and Nisae Williamson missionaries).

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David Eugene Lilly


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David Eugene Lilly, 75, of Charlotte, passed away on Monday, July 24, 2023, in Lansing. David was born October 14, 1947, in Hinton, WV, the son of the late Ernest Rusell and Elsie Fay (Evans) Lilly. David joined the U.S. Army immediately after high school in 1966. He was stationed in South Korea. After completing his military service, he returned to West Virginia for a short time before moving to Potterville, MI. He began working at Owens-Illinois factory in Charlotte in 1968. He worked there for 37 years, retiring as Shift Supervisor in 2005. David married Joyce Ann Welsh on April 7, 1987, and the two happily combined their families. David was a huge Spartan fan, avidly following both MSU basketball and football teams. He loved country music and he could often be found enjoying old Western movies.

David is survived by his wife, Joyce Lilly; children, Eric (Angie) Lilly, Brian (Christine) Lilly, Gina (Lawrence) McWilliams, Tim Welsh, Scott (fiancé Drema Emerson) Thomas, and Nick (Casey) Thomas; nine grandchildren; brother, Gary (Marrilyn) Lilly of Haslett; sisters, Joyce Louise Stricker of Camphill, PA, Brenda (Don) Lilly of Winchester, VA, and Anna Lee (Kevin) Breese of Harrison, MI; and his close friend, Ron Crook of Charlotte. David was predeceased by his parents; sister, Carolyn Susie Lilly; and brothers, Alvin Lilly and Roger Lilly.

Friends are encouraged to support David’s family by attending services or sharing memories on his Tribute Page at Funeral services were held at 1:00 p.m. on Friday, July 28, 2023, at Pray Funeral Home in Charlotte with Pastor Chuck Jenson officiating. Visitation was one hour prior to the funeral. Interment took place in Benton Township Cemetery. The funeral was webcast so you may watch it from any computer, smartphone, or mobile device that has internet access. Go to, click on David’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 Sparrow Herbert-Herman Cancer Center. The family is in the care of Pray Funeral Home, Charlotte.

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Frederick Biskie


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Frederick Biskie, a hall of famer and late-blooming professional athlete, died July 24, 2023, at his home with his family by his side. Frederick Walter Biskie was born on May 30, 1937, in Buffalo, New York, to parents Leonard and Winifred (Sias) Biskie. After living in Jolliette, IL, then coming to Michigan and living in Dearborn, Parma, and Hudson, Fred moved to Charlotte, MI to take a teaching job. While teaching at Charlotte High School, Fred met another teacher in the building, Sara Lu (Haddon), and they were the talk of the school when they began dating and married just six months later. Fred taught for 31 years as a business educator. Fred and his wife, Sara, have been married for 55 years. They have enjoyed teaching, raising a family, camping, fishing in Canada, visiting their children and grandchildren, traveling, and in recent years, spending winters in Sebring, FL.

Fred passionately pursued his hobbies. Introduced to rabbit raising by his father, Fred raised and showed American Checkered Giant rabbits for decades. He was inducted into the American Checkered Giant Rabbit Club Hall of Fame and was an ambassador for the hobby of rabbit raising. Case in point, for years, he was captain of a local bowling team called “Biskie’s Bucks” (buck is the term for a male rabbit) and his teams had an American Checked Giant rabbit emblazoned on their bowling shirts.

Not many can say that their time as a professional athlete began in their eighth decade of life. But when Fred joined the Sebring, FL Shuffleboard Club and Battle Creek, MI Shuffleboard Club, his winters on the Florida shuffleboard courts paid off and he “accidentally” became a pro in Michigan after scoring too many points in the ProAm tournaments. He continued to compete in shuffleboard until the summer of ’23. Some of his children enjoy claiming that they have the genes of a pro athlete.

Fred was introduced to the teachings of Jesus at a young age, when he committed himself to Jesus’ way. He imperfectly strove to live out his faith through the rest of his life, assured that God’s grace would cover his deficiencies. He was an active member of First Baptist Church in Charlotte, MI, and a participating member of Gideon’s International. His faith in God was very important to Fred, he could be found reading scripture each morning, and he tried to live out its teachings in practical ways. If you don’t have a lived-out-trust in Jesus, he encourages you to read the Gospel of John and reflect on the claims of Jesus.

Fred is survived by his wife, Sara (Haddon) Biskie; daughter, Beth (Chris) Smith; sons, Scott, Steve, and Dave Biskie; grandchildren, Taylor, Shae and Drew Biskie, Connor Brooke and Clay Smith, Ransom and Rhys Biskie; sister-in-law, Linda Walter; and several nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents; siblings, June North and Carolyn Cooper; and grandson, Christopher Smith.

Friends are encouraged to support Fred’s family by attending services or sharing memories on his Tribute Page at Visitation is Sunday, July 30, 4-6:00 p.m. at Pray Funeral Home in Charlotte. Funeral services are Monday, July 31, 11:00 a.m. at First Baptist Church in Charlotte with Pastor Pete Kroll officiating. The funeral will be webcast so you may watch it from any computer, smartphone, or mobile device that has internet access. Go to, click on Fred’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 First Baptist Church in Charlotte, MI, Gideons International, or Youth Haven Ranch. The family is in the care of Pray Funeral Home, Charlotte.

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Terry Lee Ranshaw Sr.


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Terry Lee Ranshaw Sr. (77) of Charlotte, Michigan, passed away on July 14, 2023. He was the son of LaRoy Ranshaw and wife Millie, of Charlotte, both of whom are deceased.

Terry was proud to be the Chief of Police in Sunfield, MI. His death has now ended a lifetime of passion and dedication to the police force where he learned to be an airplane and helicopter pilot. His memory will live on in a memorial dedication to be displayed at the National Law Enforcement Museum in Washington, DC.

He is survived by his sons, Terry Lee Ranshaw Jr. and David Wayne Ranshaw of Charlotte, Michigan. He is also survived by one brother, Rick Michalski with wife Audrey Michalski of Detroit, and one sister, Vicky Williams with husband Randy of Grand Ledge. There are several grandchildren, great grandchildren, nieces, nephews, cousins, and stepsiblings.

There will be a celebration of life held on August 5, 2023, at 3 p.m. at 7121 Granger Highway, Charlotte, Michigan. All are welcome. There will be live music and food for all. He will be buried next to his sister at Needmore Cemetery, Charlotte, Michigan.

Please no flowers, instead make a donation to the Needmore Church in Charlotte, MI.

To view Terry’s obituary online or to leave a condolence for the family please visit

The family is being served by the Burkhead-Green-Kilgo Funeral Home.

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