Judith Ann Zimmerman, age 83, of Marcellus, passed away Thursday, September 30, 2021 at Bronson Methodist Hospital in Kalamazoo.
Judi was born in Oak Park, Illinois on April 25, 1938, the daughter of John Rutkowski and Hazel (Gosselin) Rutkowski. Judi spent her childhood years living in Muskegon, and graduated from Muskegon Catholic Central in 1956. After high school, Judi began a career in cost accounting at Anaconda and not long after, Muskegon Piston Ring. It was during her time with Muskegon Piston Ring that Judi and her son, Greg, were introduced to Nathan. Judi and Nate courted a year prior to their marriage on May 10, 1969 in Newaygo. Nate, Judi and Greg resided in Newaygo for several months before finally moving to their forever home in Marcellus.
Judi spent the earlier part of her marriage as a stay-at-home Mom to her growing family. During this time, Judi began working on her flower gardens and often helped Nate with a vegetable garden that produced food for the long winters. On summer weekends, you would more than likely find the family at Van Buren State Park enjoying pancakes by Nate and a full day of sun, water and sand. Summer months were the busiest as Judi would preserve vegetables from the garden and fruits into jelly and dried fruit leather.
Once the children were all of school age, Judi began working at Three Rivers Schools in their food service department. Judi was presented with a full-time position at a local bank in Lawton, and remained a banking customer service representative until her retirement. During her employment at the bank, Judi was able to fulfill her dream of having an inground pool, and she spent summers enjoying it with her children and grandchildren. Judi also loved to travel and once her children were raised, she and Nate traveled south to visit with friends and west to visit their son, Brady, in Colorado. Judi also enjoyed girls trip vacations with work friends to Toronto and Las Vegas and those friendships lasted for decades. One of her close friends, Gail Baumgartner was a fixture in Nate and Judi’s home on Monday evenings for a meal and fellowship after Judi retired.
Judi cherished her time with family, especially with her children and grandchildren. She would attend sporting events, band concerts and the occasional Grandparents Day hosted by the school. Judi was blessed with 11 grandchildren and 2 great grandchildren and many cats. Each of them brought her great joy. She loved laughing and being silly with her grandchildren. There was always lots of laughter at family gatherings!
Judi’s presence will be greatly missed. She was loved by her family and friends and her legacy will remain as she is remembered with fondness and thankfulness for the role she played in all of their lives. Judi is survived by her husband, Nathan Zimmerman; children, Matt (Donna) Zimmerman of Chesterton IN, Brady (Amy Johnson) Zimmerman of Lawton, Erika (Robert) Knepple of Kalamazoo, Chad (Rochelle) Zimmerman of Norton Shores, and brother Jack (Sandi) Rutkowski of Muskegon, 11 grandchildren and 2 great grandchildren.
Judi was proceeded in death by her parents, John and Hazel Rutkowski and son, Greg Zimmerman.
Cremation has taken place and the family will receive friends from 1 to 3 pm on Sunday, October 10, 2021 at the Mater-Ralston Funeral Home located at 52780 M-40 North, Marcellus, MI 49067. A luncheon will follow at Marcellus Methodist Church. Memorial donations may be directed to the Adopt A Friend For Life of Southwest Michigan, PO BOX 251, Paw Paw, MI 49079. Online condolences may be left at www.materralstonfuneralhome.com
Family has requested for masks to be worn at the funeral home.