Larry L. Hovarter, age 79 of Sturgis, Michigan passed away late Sunday evening November 29, 2009 at the Fairview Living Centre in Centreville.
He was born August 22, 1930 in Colon, Michigan a son to the late Laurence E. and Velma M. (Woods) Hovarter.
Larry had resided in Sturgis since 1964 coming from Reed City. His early life was spent in Colon and he graduated from Colon High School with the class of 1949.
On June 25, 1954 he married JoAnn Ziglear at the First Presbyterian Church in Sturgis.
Following over 25 years of dedicated service he retired from the Michigan State Police in January of 1983. While with the State Police he received many commendations for high standard of performance. One of his many accomplishments as a state trooper was the fact that he was among the first officers to serve with the State Police Underwater Recovery Squad. He was a member of this squad for seven years and participated in many recoveries of persons and property. Following his retirement he was a corrections officer with the State Department of Corrections for several years.
Larry was proud to have served his country in the U.S. Air Force from 1950-1954 during the Korean Conflict with the Air Police. Larry was a talented fast pitch softball pitcher and was a member of the Air Force Softball team and had pitched in nine different countries throughout the world.
He was a member of the Colon Masonic Lodge, Eagles Lodge #1314, B.P.O.Elks #1381, Neuman-Wenzel Post #73 American Legion and Captain John J. Kelley Post #1355 VFW. He was a true outdoorsman enjoying hunting, fishing and playing golf. He also always loved a good game of cards especially Euchre. Larry had numerous memberships and involvements but what was always first and most important in his life was his family.
He is survived by his loving wife of 55 years, JoAnn, Three Sons; Chip (Mia) Hovarter, Jeff (his fiancée Mary Couch) Hovarter and Brent Hovarter all of Sturgis, Six Grandchildren; Crystal Hovarter a student at Michigan State University in East Lansing, Jacob Hovarter, Shayna Hovarter, Austin Hovarter, Autumn Hovarter and Kelli Hovarter and several nieces and nephews.
His parents and one sister; Betty J. Bailey preceded him in death. In accordance with his wishes his body has been donated for medical research to the Michigan State University Department of Anatomy in East Lansing. A memorial service celebrating the life of Larry L. Hovarter will be held at 11:00 A.M. Saturday at the Hackman Family Funeral Homes – Hackman Chapel, 114 S. Nottawa St., Sturgis, MI 49091. The Rev. Robert Keim of the First United Methodist Church will officiate.
Full military rites will be conferred by Captian John J. Kelley Post #1355 VFW and the U.S. Air Force Honor Guard.
The family suggests those wishing to make a memorial donation in Mr. Hovarter’s memory consider the charity of one’s choice.