Private Graveside Service
The service is limited to immediate family members. However, everyone is invited to watch the service live by following the link above.
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.
Edison Christian Life Services Foundation
1000 Edison Ave NW
Grand Rapids, MI 49504
Life Story / Obituary
A woman naturally centered in love, Hazel Stahl embraced each day as an embodiment of faith, living in conscious service to others. Whether working to create a loving home where all were welcome, serving her church community, caring for the family farm, or sharing time with friends and family, Hazel always led with her heart. A devoted wife, mother, grandmother, and fellowship friend she found pleasure in showering others with her good care while welcoming life’s challenges and joys equally. Though she will be sadly missed, Hazel will be lovingly remembered by those she loved.
The 1920s were marked by tremendous confidence, prosperity, and previously unknown comforts. The economy boomed, wages rose for most Americans, and prices fell, resulting in a higher standard of living for most. With the inventions of the washing machine, vacuum cleaner, self-winding watch, bulldozer, instant camera, drive-in restaurants, Band-Aids, and the convertible the post-war, era marked significant advancement, and morale flourished throughout the land. While the US census reported for the first time in history that more Americans lived in urban areas than rural ones, the wave of sweeping social and economic growth grew exponentially with the ratification of the 19th amendment, which granted women the right to vote. More than a million women worked in white-collar jobs while the automobile industry nearly doubled. This vibrant time grew even more brilliant on January 14, 1926, in McBain, Michigan, when John and Bertha (Bandsma) Meyering welcomed their daughter Hazel into their hearts and home.
The second of the four Meyering children, Hazel’s early years were rooted in faith, family, and farm life in Lucas, Michigan. The cornerstone of life was the family’s Christian faith, and days centered around the required hard work of tending to chores around the home and on the farm. For Hazel, this included milking the cows. When there was time for leisure, Hazel was able to hitch a short ride into town with someone who was driving down the street.
Sadly, Hazel’s father died when she was only 15 years old. As a result, the family sold the farm and moved into the village of McBain, where they continued to explore and celebrate their faith at the Christian Reformed Church. Hazel found work as a nanny in Cadillac. Not only did she care for children, but she also cooked, cleaned, did laundry, and tended to other household chores.
In time, Hazel met her beloved, Arthur, who was also a church fellowship member. After safely returning home from serving in the Army during WWII, the couple married on December 6, 1946. For a time, they lived in Cadillac, where they welcomed their daughter, Marilynn. After Art secured a better job, the family moved to Grand Rapids, where they welcomed two more children, Judy and Karl. They eventually settled into a home on Spring Street, just up the block from East Leonard Christian Reformed Church. The house and church remained their homes for 35 years.
While her children were young, Hazel dedicated herself to creating a supportive home, firmly built upon her unwavering faith and resourcefulness. Once all of the kids were in school full-time, she started working at Valley City Linen. She then found work in dietary at Holland Home Fulton Manor.
During their retirement years, Hazel and Art grew the love of camping they had shared with their children while they were growing up. In 1987 they sold their home and lived a nomadic life for a few years traveling the country. Much of this time was spent with the Roving Volunteers in Christ Service (RVICS), a Christian ministry dedicated to providing a variety of maintenance, service, and construction assistance to needy non-profit Christian organizations. Countless hours were spent, in the good company of a growing fellowship of friends, volunteering their time and talents across the country. Hazel particularly enjoyed the work, painting, cleaning, making curtains, and preparing meals with signature love and care.
Hazel hated the cold, so winters were soon spent in Florida, where she relished in the warmth and sunshine. They made their home on a spot they found through RVICS at Edgewood Children’s Ranch, A Christian based housing community for kids. While away, they kept in touch with their family via mail and phone calls. In the spring, Hazel and Art returned to Michigan, making their home Leisure Village since 1990. A short time after returning north in the spring of 1997, Art was diagnosed with cancer and passed away the following year.
In the face of losing Art, Hazel leaned into the comforts of long walks, her family, and her faith community. She continued to wintering with her friends in Florida for a few more years and volunteered at North Kent Service Center. In 2017, she moved to Edison Manor, where she enjoyed continuing to be a part of the Edison Christian community for the rest of her life.
Without a doubt, it is difficult to imagine life in the absence of Hazel’s warm, generous presence. While she will be ever so missed, may we find comfort in carrying her legacy forward. With each moment we choose to center ourselves in faith and give of our talents in service of others, we will celebrate the gift of Hazel’s life. In this way, we will keep her spirit alive and inspiring others as she so inspired each of us.
Hazel Stahl, age 94 of Grand Rapids, passed away December 17, 2020, of natural causes. She was preceded in death by her husband, Arthur, in 1998; her son-in-law Don DeKorte and daughter-in-law Marsha; sister Irene (Neal) Schaaf; brother, Ernest Meyering and brother-in-law Leon Scholten. Hazel is survived by her children Marilynn Vegter, Judy DeKorte, and Karl Stahl; grandchildren Nanette Flynn, Janice (Kamron) Gribben, Scott (Heather) DeKorte, Holly (Charles) Anselm, Hope (John) Porcia, April (Mark) Norman, Eric (Jen) DeKorte, Erin (Rob) Wybrecht, David (Jasmine) DeKorte, Gage (Brianna) DeKorte, Ashley DeKorte, and Donovan DeKorte; 21 great-grandchildren and 3 great-great-grandchildren; sister, Cecile Scholten; and many nieces, nephews, and cousins. A private graveside service will be held at Fairplains Cemetery. For those who wish, memorial contributions to Edison Christian Life Services Foundation are appreciated. To read more about her life, to share a memory or photo, or to sign her guestbook, visit www.heritagelifestory.com