Archive - Obituary

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January 26th, 2011

Lt. Col. Thomas S. Will

On Oct. 27, 2010, Lt. Col. Thomas Sherman Will, U.S.A.F., (Ret.) beloved husband of Nancy L. (nee Randall) Will, devoted father of Todd Will, Tari French, Tamara Smith and Tanya Bodde, brother of the late Kenneth Will, Jr. passed away. He is also survived by eight grandchildren and four great grandsons and several nieces and nephews.

Tom was born in Ann Arbor in 1936 to Hilda E. Will and Loren Kenneth Will, who preceded him in death. Mr. Will attended the Tecumseh schools until 1952 then transferred to Cranbrook from which he graduated. From there, he attended the University of Michigan. Upon graduation, he entered the United States Air Force and served 21 years in the field of Communications-Electronics Security. During his years in the Air Force, he was stationed in several states and countries, including Hawaii, Vietnam and Germany.

A graveside service with full military honors will be held on Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2011, at 1 p.m. in Arlington National Cemetery. Family and friends should gather at the Administration Building by 12:30 p.m. Arrangements were made by Harry H. Witzke’s Family Funeral Home, Inc., 4112 Old Columbia Pike, Ellicott City, Md. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to either the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund, 2600 Virginia Ave NW, Suite 104, Washington, D.C.  20037 or the Air Force Memorial Foundation, 1 Air Force Memorial Drive, Arlington, VA  22204.

Michael James Compau

Michael James Compau, 57, of Tecumseh passed away peacefully on Tuesday, Jan. 25, 2011, at Bixby Medical Center in Adrian after a six month battle with cancer.

Michael was born March 10, 1953, in Wyandotte, Mich. to Michael Eugene and Donna Jean (Dailey) Compau.  He lived as a child in Trenton and Belleville, Mich. and graduated from New Boston Huron High School in 1971.

On May 20, 1977, he married Linda Boelter at St. Stephen Catholic Church in New Boston, Mich. Michael worked at Ford Motor Company in Saline for 33 years, retiring in 2004.

In addition to his wife Linda, Michael is survived by his two sons whom he was very proud of: Michael Zachary Compau of Adrian and Joshua Lee Compau and his girlfriend Jennifer Weiss of Tecumseh.  His dog Kolzig will also greatly miss Dad.  Other survivors include four brothers, Timothy (Rhonda) Compau, Jeffrey (Joyce) Compau, John (Jennifer) Compau, and Christopher Compau; and one sister, Kimberly (Rick) DeWitt, along with many nephews and nieces.  He is also survived by his mother-in-law, Hilda Boelter, brother-in-law Brian Boelter, and two sisters-in-law, Debbie Brown and Karen Barth.

Michael was preceded in death by his parents Michael and Donna Compau; father-in-law Marvin L. Boelter and brother-in law Marvin E. Boelter.

The family of Michael is following his wishes for cremation and no services.  Memorial gifts may be made to Tecumseh Acres Elementary, 600 Adrian Street, Tecumseh, MI  49286 to be used for the outdoor classroom.  Condolences to the family may be made online at

The family would like to thank the staff in the Palmer 2 at Bixby Medical Center for the wonderful care they gave Michael and how nice they were to the family; it is very much appreciated.

Clark Griffin

Clark Griffin, age 62, of Britton, lost his battle with cancer on January 24, 2011.
He was born Nov. 4, 1948 in Tecumseh, Mich., the son of Clare and Jane (Clark) Griffin.
On April 7, 1970, he married Jackie Griffin and she survives.  

Clark was a graduate of Britton High School, Class of 1966.  He was a 23-year veteran, U.S. Army and Army Airforce. Clark was retired from Ford Motor Company, Saline Plant.   He had a passion for camping and any and all activities with his family.

In addition to his wife Jackie, Clark is survived by two daughters, Jacqueline (Jason) Lawrence and Keri (BJ) Rose; son, Chad Griffin; 5 grandchildren, Clayton, Madelyn, Michael, Jade Marie, and Gavin; and two sisters, Janie Gurica and Cindy (Chuck) Vaughn.
Funeral services will be 2 p.m. Friday, Jan. 28, 2011, at the J. Gilbert Purse Funeral Home, Tecumseh with Rev. Frank Rupnik III officiating.  Burial will follow in Ridgeway Cemetery with military honors performed by the Lenawee County 40 & 8 and the Britton American Legion.

Visitation will be 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 4 to 8 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 27, 2011, and from 12 noon until the time of service on Friday.  Condolences to the family may be made online at

Donald Chrisman

Donald Chrisman, age 87, of Tecumseh, went to be with his Lord and Savior Jan. 19, 2011.

Donald was born Feb. 22, 1923 in Cement City, Mich., the son of Henry and Livona (Burns) Chrisman.  On April 10, 1942, he married Linda Woodby in Napoleon, Ohio.  She preceded him in death on Nov. 9, 1997 after 55 years of marriage.   Don proudly served his country in the U. S. Army during WW II.   He retired from Tecumseh Products after 42 years of service.   

Don was a loving father and extremely proud grandfather.  His grandchildren and great grandchildren were the light of his life.  He was a devout Christian and faithfully attended Trinity Baptist Church in Adrian, Mich.

He loved fishing and enjoyed deer hunting.  He especially liked having family over for cookouts.

Donald is survived by his three children, Shirley (Dennis) Venia of Clinton, Mich., Larry (Shirley) Chrisman of Britton, and Karen (Harold) Jeffers of Britton; 11 grandchildren; 21 great grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.

He sadly lost his oldest child, Barbara Chrisman Grinnell; his parents; one grandson, Grant Wallace; one brother and three sisters.

Funeral Services were held at 3 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 22, 2011, at the Trinity Baptist Church, 2200 Occidental Highway, Adrian with Pastor Joe Tatsak officiating. Burial followed in Lenawee Hills Memorial Gardens, Tecumseh. Visitation was from 4 p.m. -8 p.m., Friday, Jan. 21, 2011 at the J. Gilbert Purse Funeral Home, Tecumseh.  Condolences to the family may be made online at

Gerald M. Papworth

Gerald M. Papworth, age 68, of Britton, passed away January 22, 2011.

Jerry was born March 25, 1942, in Tecumseh, Michigan the son of Maurice and Beatrice (Downing) Papworth.   On April 29, 2000, he married Marilyn Mason in Britton. He was a 1960 graduate of Britton High School.  He served his country in the National Guard for six years.    He was an avid hunter and fisherman and enjoyed farming, camping and snowmobiling.   He especially enjoyed spending time with his grandchildren.  Jerry was a devoted husband, father, grandfather and great grandfather and will be dearly missed by his family.

Besides his wife Marilyn, he is survived by his children, Todd (Rhonda) Papworth of Britton, Holly Rossbach of Oscoda; brother, Richard "Dick" (Karen) Papworth of Britton;  grandchildren, Ashley (Matt) Clark, James Bellville,  Nathaniel and Joshua Papworth, and a great-grandson, Jakob Clark and stepchildren,  Kathleen (Larry) Guenther of Deerfield and Jeff (Andrea ) Mason of Virginia Beach.

He was preceded in death by his parents.

Funeral services were held at 2 p.m., Tuesday, Jan. 25, 2011, at the J. Gilbert Purse Funeral Home, Tecumseh with Rev. Richard Burstall officiating.  Burial took place in Ridgeway Cemetery, Ridgeway.  

Visitation was from 4-8 p.m., Monday, Jan. 24, 2011 and one hour prior to the service on Tuesday at the J. Gilbert Purse Funeral Home, Tecumseh.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Grace United Methodist Church or Hospice of Lenawee. Condolences to the family may be made online at

James E. Meade

James E. Meade, 86, of Tecumseh, passed away peacefully, surrounded by his loving family, on Sunday, Jan. 23, 2011, at the Provincial House of Adrian.  He had been in poor health since November.

A lifetime resident of Tecumseh, James was born in the family home on Nov. 9, 1924; he was the son of Walter and Minnie (Aebersold) Meade.  He was a 1942 graduate of Tecumseh High School, and honorably served his country in the US Army during World War II.  On March 16, 1945, he married Virginia Milner in Tecumseh.  James was a 48-year employee of Tecumseh Products, retiring in 1991.

He was a member of the Ridgeway Church of the Nazarene, enjoyed fishing, traveling, especially vacationing up north, but mostly time spent with his family.  He will surely be missed by all those who knew and loved him.

He leaves to mourn his loving wife of 66 years, Virginia; his sons, Michael (Val Marino) Meade of Munising and Richard (Dolores) Meade of Tecumseh, his grandchildren; David, Megan, Mandy, Emily, and Daisy; and a great granddaughter, Cheyenne Ivey.

Sadly, his parents and a brother, Harold, preceded him in death.

At his request cremation has been held.  The family will greet friends at the Tecumseh Chapel of the Handler Homes on Thursday, Jan. 27, from 1 p.m. until a memorial service celebrating his life at 4 p.m.  Officiating will be Rev. Ray Hansen of the Ridgeway Church of the Nazarene.  Inurnment will take place at a later date at Brookside Cemetery, Tecumseh.

Memorial gifts in his name may be given to the Provincial House of Adrian.
Online condolences may be offered to the family by visiting the obituary page at

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