Terry Lee VanNest, age 67, of Sturgis, lost his battle with cancer early Thursday morning, June 23, 2011, at his home.
He was born Feb. 10, 1944, in Centreville, a son of the late Albert and Thelma (Morrison) VanNest.
Terry was a lifelong Sturgis area resident and a graduate of Sturgis High School with the class of 1962.
On March 30, 1965, he married Vivian Chapla at the Holy Angels Catholic Church in Sturgis.
As a young man, Terry enjoyed serving the community through his affiliation with the local Jaycees and devoted five years to the local Muscular Dystrophy Telethon.
An avid sports enthusiast, Terry loved Tiger baseball, the Detroit Lions, Red Wings and the University of Michigan football and basketball games.
As a pitcher on his high school baseball team, he stood proudly by as his four sons became pitchers in school. Terry coached rocket football for five years, baseball for eight years and soccer for three years.
Terry is survived by his loving and dedicated wife of 46 years, Vivian; four sons, Scott VanNest of White Pigeon, Steven (his fiancée Rebecca Poulsen) VanNest of Sturgis, Christopher VanNest of White Pigeon and Michael VanNest of Sturgis; six grandchildren; three great-grandchildren; two brothers, Richard (Jill) VanNest of Burr Oak and James (Anna) VanNest of Sturgis; his aunt, Arlene Roberts of Sturgis; his faithful dog, Abby; and several nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents; and two uncles, Lejeune Morrison and Truman Roberts.
At his wish, cremation has taken place. The family will receive friends from 2-4 p.m. Saturday at the Hackman Family Funeral Homes – Rosenberg Chapel, 807 E. Chicago Road, Sturgis. A memorial service celebrating the life of Terry VanNest will be held at 10 a.m. Monday at the funeral home. The Rev. Robert Keim of the First United Methodist Church of Sturgis will officiate. Burial of the ashes will follow the service at Oak Law Cemetery in Sturgis.
The family suggests those wishing to make a memorial donation in Mr. VanNest’s memory consider Heartland Hospice, 8075 Creekside Dr., Suite 120, Portage, MI 49024.