Jerry D. “Pat” Vreeland, age 80, of Burr Oak, passed away unexpectedly Monday morning, Oct. 10, 2011, at the Sturgis Hospital emergency room.
He was born March 17, 1931, in Branch County, a son of the late William and Annabelle (Martin) Vreeland.
Pat had resided in Burr Oak for the past 56 years, coming from the Sherwood area.
On Feb. 19, 1955 he married Martha Greshaw in Angola, Ind.
Pat retired from Americraft Carton in Sturgis following 10 years of employment. Prior to joining Americraft, he had been employed by Doerr Products in Burr Oak and Bronson Plating in Bronson.
Pat was proud to have served his country in the U.S. Army during the Korean War, earning the rank of sergeant. He was awarded a Combat Infantry Badge, United Nations Service Medal and Korean Service Ribbon with two Bronze Service Stars, two Overseas Bars and a Purple Heart. Pat was a member of Captain John J. Kelley Post #1355 VFW and a Life member of AMVETS. He enjoyed hunting, fishing, camping and working in his yard.
He is survived by his loving wife of 56 years, Martha; three daughters, Kathy (Bob) Dennis of Colon, Paula (Mark) Klein of Mendon and Juanita Vreeland, serving in the U.S. Army stationed at Fort Knox, Ky.; seven grandchildren, Jeanette, Jessica, Marty, Stephanie, Michelle, Matt and Cindy; three great-grandchildren, Colton, Paige and Chris; a sister, Matilda Schrieber of Coldwater; and several nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents; his in-laws; two sisters; and two brothers.
In accordance with his wishes, cremation has taken place. The family will receive friends from noon-12:45 p.m. Thursday at Hackman Family Funeral Homes — Rosenberg Chapel, 807 E. Chicago Road, Sturgis.
A memorial service celebrating the life of Pat Vreeland will be held at 1 p.m. Thursday at the funeral home. David Farrell will officiate. A graveside committal will follow the service at Burr Oak Cemetery in Burr Oak. Full military honors will be conferred by Captain John J. Kelley Post #1355 VFW and the U.S. Army Honor Guard.
The family suggests those wishing to make a memorial donation in Mr. Vreeland’s memory consider the VFW Post #1355, 264 W. Fawn River Rd., Sturgis, MI 49091.
His obituary is also at www.hackmanfamilyfuneralhome.com, where personal messages of support may be left for the family.