Honoring Tradition.
Celebrating Life.

John Lesiewicz

March 16, 1929 - May 25, 2024
Grand Rapids, MI



Tuesday, May 28, 2024
5:00 PM to 8:00 PM EDT
Heritage Life Story Funeral Homes
Alt & Shawmut Hills Chapel
2120 Lake Michigan Dr., N.W.
Grand Rapids, MI 49504
(616) 453-8263
Driving Directions


Wednesday, May 29, 2024
10:30 AM to 11:30 AM EDT
Basilica Of St. Adalbert
654 Davis Ave
Grand Rapids, MI 49504
(616) 458-3065
Web Site


At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.

Emmanuel Hospice
401 Hall St. SW, Suite 263
Grand Rapids, MI 49503
(616) 719-0919

Carmelite Sisters of the Divine Heart of Jesus
2161 Leonard St NW
Grand Rapids, MI 49504
(616) 915-2447


Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.

Ball Park Floral
8 Valley Ave.
Grand Rapids, MI 49504
(616) 459-3409
Driving Directions
Web Site

Life Story / Obituary


A kind and loving man, John Lesiewicz lived a life rich in faith, family, and friends. John embodied the principles of his faith, welcoming each day as a gift and every person as a friend. Hardworking and persevering, John confidently met life’s challenges with hope and enjoyed celebrating the best of times with those he loved. A loving and dedicated husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, brother, uncle, and friend to everyone who knew him, John will be deeply missed and lovingly remembered.

The beginning of 1929 found the nation continuing to ride the decade’s roaring wave of peace, prosperity, and hope. The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) was created in New York City, The San Francisco Bay Toll Bridge opened, and the very first Academy Awards were presented. As the wave of sweeping social and economic growth rapidly increased, nowhere was there more hope for the future than in the hearts of Joseph and Pauline (Eifler) Lisiewicz as they welcomed their son John on March 16, on the family farm on Linden Ave in Wright Township, Ottawa County, Michigan.

Raised on the family farm, John enjoyed the good company of his siblings and started working as soon as he was old enough. His parents raised cows, which kept the family busy. John attended Sand Creek Elementary School, a one-room school house which was on Linden Ave, near his home. After completing the eighth grade, John left school to begin working.

John first worked as a pin setter at a local bowling alley. For a short time, he worked at Stickley Brothers Furniture Company, where he had the good fortune of meeting Florence Mroz. Instantly smitten, John and Florence, who was seventeen at the time, began dating. Florence’s mother didn’t make it easy for John, often chasing him from their neighborhood. Sometimes, with a broom in her hand! In 1949, when gas was 27 cents a gallon, John was proud to buy a 1941 Chevy Business Coupe for $775. He was also happy to teach Florence how to drive.

After two years of dating, John and Florence married at Saint Adalbert’s Catholic Church, officially beginning their 72-year adventure. The newlyweds settled into their first apartment on First Street NW. In 1947, at the age of 18, John began working for the City of Grand Rapids laying sidewalks, then he transferred to the street lighting division. John loved the work he did preparing the city for Christmas by installing the Christmas decorations each year. Florence sold Tupperware until she and John became parents.

In time, the happy couple welcomed seven children to their family. John Jr., Charles, Edward, Michael, Laura, Steven, and Julie were the centers of their worlds.

Soon after the start of their family John and Florence were pleased to purchase a farmhouse on Mapelrow in Walker Township. Although the farmhouse served their family well, a small home was no longer large enough. John and Florence built a cape cod style home in front of the existing farmhouse to have enough room to raise their growing family. John enjoyed working in his fruit and vegetable garden alongside his father-in-law and raising Basset Hounds.

The family enjoyed taking special trips. Many summers were spent at the family cottage on the Muskegon River, and any time they could, they ventured to local parks such as Richmond and Garfield to picnic. Longer family outings would include Half Moon Lake, Grand Haven, Muskegon Beach, and the annual Ionia Free Fair were special places to spend time together, as was taking their pop-up camper to Brower Park. The family often attended the Holiday Parade downtown and also enjoyed a special trip to Virginia when one of their sons was stationed there in the service.

Music was a cornerstone for John and his family. John would commonly bring his children to the local polish halls to listen to polka music. These trips have inspired the love of music in John's children as many of them still play polka music to this day. Because of their love of their polish heritage John and Florence were the king and queen of the Pulaski Day Parade.

Always busy, John was a very involved father and hard worker. In addition to working for the city of Grand Rapids for 39 years, John enjoyed helping others and would commonly be found removing trees, hedges, and landscaping where needed. After retiring in 1986, he and Florence enjoyed spending more time camping, traveling, and spending time with family. Staying in the family trailer on the Muskegon River in Stanwood continued to be a favorite, as did going to the casino. They traveled to Las Vegas. John was blessed to take an epic trip to Poland, his home country, with his son Ed, for the purpose of finding family. John had a special love for the Amish community and had the good fortune of going to lunch with an Amish family.

A powerful role model for all who were blessed to know him, John’s legacy of faith, love, and hope will continue to live on in the hearts of those he so dearly loved. In each moment we enjoy gathering as a family, camping, traveling, tending the garden, exploring our faith, and sharing the day with our beloved, we celebrate the countless ways John made the world a better place. In this way, we keep his spirit alive and inspiring others as he so inspired each of us.

John Lesiewicz, age 95, of Grand Rapids, MI, passed away with his family by his side on Saturday, May 25, 2024. John was born in the Spring of 1929 in Wright Township, Ottawa County, MI to the late Joseph and Pauline (Eifler) Lisiewicz. John is preceded in death by his wife of 72 years Florence (Mroz), his parents, brothers and sisters. He is survived by his children, John Jr. (Dee Dee) Lesiewicz, Charles (Paulette) Lesiewicz, Edward (Sally) Lesiewicz, Michael (Judy) Lesiewicz, Laurie Lesiewicz, Steve Lesiewicz, and Julie VanDyke; 17 grandchildren; 36 great-grandchildren; many nieces, nephews and other family members. John was the last surviving sibling of the Nezwek-Lesiewicz family. John was a loving and dedicated husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, brother, uncle, and friend to everyone who knew him. John will be deeply missed and lovingly remembered. He had been a lifetime member of Saint James Catholic Church. A service to celebrate John’s life will be held on Wednesday, May 29, 2024, at 10:30 AM at Basilica of St. Adalbert, (654 Davis Ave NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504. Visitation has been scheduled for Tuesday, May 28, 2024 from 5:00 – 8:00 PM, with a vigil at 6:30 PM, at Heritage Life Story Funeral Home - Alt & Shawmut Hills Chapel, (2120 Lake Michigan Drive NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504). Additional visitation will be held at the church prior to the funeral mass on Wednesday from 9:30 – 10:30 AM. John will be laid to rest in Holy Cross Cemetery in Grand Rapids, MI. Please consider making a memorial contribution in John’s memory to either Carmelite Sisters of the Divine Heart of Jesus, (2161 Leonard St NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504) or to Emmanuel Hospice (401 Hall St SW #263, Grand Rapids, MI 49503). John’s family would like to offer a note of special thanks to the staff of St. Ann’s Home, the Carmelite Sisters, and Emmanuel Hospice for their loving care of John. To leave a memory or condolence, please visit www.heritagelifestory.com.