Gerald Spence Sr., 75

Gerald William Spence Sr., 75, of Sturgis, passed away Monday morning, July 4, 2011, at his home.

He was born Jan. 9, 1936, in Hillsdale County, a son of the late Clifford and Genevieve (Booth) Spence.

Gerald had been a Sturgis resident since 1967. His early life was spent in Hillsdale County.

On Sept. 11, 1961 he married Yoko Otsuka in Tokyo, Japan.

Following 22 ½ years of dedicated service with the U.S. Army, he retired January 9, 1996, with the rank of staff sergeant. He served his country during the Korean War, Vietnam War and Operation Desert Storm.

Gerald enjoyed woodworking, playing golf, hunting and fishing and was an avid reader.

He is survived by his children, Gerald W. (Diane) Spence, Jr. of Gobles, Clifford (Pennie) T. Spence of Sturgis, Martha (Joe) Long of Orland, Ind., and Rebecca (Eric) Rose of Elkhart, Ind.; six grandchildren; three great-grandchildren; three sisters, Diane (Fred) Hooks, Kathy Smith and Patricia Presdorf; two brothers, Thomas Spence and Richard Spence; and several nieces and nephews.

In accordance with his wishes, cremation has taken place. There will be no visitation or services.

Hackman Family Funeral Homes – Hackman Chapel, 114 S. Nottawa St., Sturgis, is entrusted with the arrangements.

The family suggests those wishing to make a memorial donation in Mr. Spence’s memory consider the American Legion Post #73, 500 W. Chicago Road, Sturgis, MI 49091 or the VFW Post #1355, 264 W. Fawn River Road, Sturgis, MI 49091.

His obituary is also at, where personal messages of support may be left for the family.

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