Wesley Saxman, 91

Wesley H. Saxman, age 91, of Leonidas passed away Wednesday, April 15, 2009, at his home, after a short illness.

Wesley was born April 8, 1918, in Leonidas Township, a son to the late W. Ivan and Mabel E. (Troy) Saxman.

On April 9, 1938, he married Gertrude C. Cooley. She preceded him in death on Aug. 7, 1987. Later in 1995, he married Dorothy Easterday.

Wesley was a lifelong resident of Leonidas. He graduated from Colon High School with the class of 1936 and furthered his education with two years of college.

Wesley served in the U.S. Army during World War II, assigned to the Counter Intelligence Corps. He worked for Weston Biscuit Company, Olivers of Battle Creek, (building B-47s and B-52s), AK Zinns Feed Co., all of Battle Creek, Then he worked for Kirsch Company of Sturgis from 1954 to 1981.

Wesley had still lived in the same house he built in 1948 in Leonidas, where he operated a small farm. He also built a home at Watersmeet in the U.P.

He had served on the Colon school board for 12 years and was instrumental in bringing a girls’ sports program to Colon High School.

He was a member of the Colon Masonic Lodge #73 and Colon American Legion Post #454. He had also attended Factoryville Bible Church.

He is survived by three daughters, Judith (Carl) Quirin of Sturgis, Kathryn (Leon) Barrett of Colon and Mary Ellen (Sam) Otterpohl of Land O’ Lakes , Wis.; two sons, Raymond W. (Marilyn) Saxman of Colon and James L. (Linda) Saxman of Leonidas; 17 grandchildren; 21 great-grandchildren; three great-great-grandchildren; stepchildren Bea Walls of Pallmetto, Fla., Steven (Alice) Easterday of Sturgis, Kenneth (Denise) Easterday of Angola, Ind., Joe (Lea) Schuler of Rice Lake, Wis.; several stepgrandchildren and step-great-grandchildren; two brothers, Alan (Betty) Saxman of Battle Creek and Robert (Mary) Saxman of Bellevue; a sister, Julia Fitzgerald of Niles; and several nieces and nephews.

The family will receive relatives and friends from 2-4 p.m. and 6-8 p.m. Friday at the Schipper Funeral Home in Colon, with a Masonic Service at 8 p.m., and also Saturday at the Factoryville Bible Church from 9:30-11 a.m., at which time funeral services will take place with the Rev. Fred Goebert officiating.

Burial will follow at LeonidasCemetery, with Military Honors conferred by the Colon American Legion, assisted by the U.S. Army Honor Guard.

If desired, the family suggests memorials be made in memory of Wesley to either the Three Rivers Health Hospice or Factoryville Bible Church. Envelopes will be available at the funeral home and church.

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