Wednesday, September 18, 2019
10:00 AM to 11:00 AM EDT
Heritage Life Story Funeral Homes
Alt & Shawmut Hills Chapel
2120 Lake Michigan Dr., N.W.
Grand Rapids, MI 49504
Life Story / Obituary
Loving, creative, and kind, Laurine Maxine Michels lived a life devoted to the care of those she loved. A woman who truly loved all people, Laurine could strike up a conversation make quick friends with anyone. She had a gift for putting people at ease and making them feel special. She rarely sat still for each moment was precious, and there was always much to do. A dedicated wife, mother, grandmother, and friend, Laurine was treasured by all who were blessed to know her.
Despite the obvious gloom of the Great Depression, 1931 beheld a power of hope that undulated in the hearts of many. With a natural drive to not just endure but thrive in the face of uncertainty, the nation continued to put one foot in front of the other to build a better future. It was in the midst of this time of despair and hope that Edward Dausey and Laura Corey gifted the world with the birth of their daughter Laurine on April 6, in Shelby Michigan.
At the age of six, Laurine was adopted out. Regardless of the challenges Laurine faced, she managed to find joy in her friendships. She loved going roller and ice skating with her friends. At 16, Laurine headed out to the world on her own.
In 1949 she married Richard Dale Greiner, whom she had met as a teen, St. Joseph Church in Weare, Michigan. Richard worked in heating and cooling. Together, Laurine and Richard were blessed with four daughters. Beckie, Jackie, Karline, and Kelly were the center of Laurine’s world. After eight years of marriage, and many moves, Laurine and Richard divorced.
After the divorce, Laurine and the girls settled in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Times were tough, but if Laurine knew one thing for sure, she knew she could do hard things! She worked several jobs to keep the family together. A talented crafter, Laurine worked odd jobs and sold her crafts to make ends meet. She made beautiful beaded bracelets, created wall hangings and paintings, worked in ceramics, and cake decorating, painted murals, made grapevine wreaths and potpourri and many more wonderful creations.
Laurine had the good fortune of meeting Charles Michels who lived in her neighborhood. The couple began dating, fell in love, and married on April 29, 1972, at Faith Lutheran Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Charles worked for C&O Railroad and had four children of his own. Laurine and Charles’ love was especially blessed by the ease with which the two families blended and became one. For over 40 years they made their home at 3498 Hayes.
Laurine was always on the move and never ran out of interests to pursue. She and Charles became members St. Paul’s Episcopal Church where Laurine was very active in organizing parish functions and arranging the flowers in the church. She would have Charles pick weeds in the yard and then she would transform them into beautiful floral arrangements. She took classes at Kendall School of Art, and her home was decorated in a Victorian theme. She loved to collect pink depression and gold-trimmed glassware, crystals, and lace. Over the years, Laurine worked at Beverly’s, Robinett’s, and Jacobson’s. She worked as a food demonstrator, floral arranger, and as a caterer. She was also a member of the Red Hatter Society. For many years, Laurine and Charles traveled in their RV.
When home, Laurine could be found in the kitchen. She was a wonderful cook! Her roasts, turkey, ham, sweet potatoes, chop suey, slab apple pie, and other desserts were unrivaled. In the rare moment that she relaxed in front of the TV she enjoyed watching morning shows as well as Jeopardy, Wheel of Fortune, Dancing with the Stars, the Hallmark Channel. She also loved watching Tiger Woods golf, Bob Ross, the painter on PBS, and going to the theater.
For 20 years the happy couple enjoyed wintering in their home in Bowling Green, Florida where Laurine played bingo twice a week and participated in the "Song Birds" singing group. As they aged and their needs changed, Laurine and Charles moved into an assisted living facility in Comstock Park. Their past few years they lived at Addington Place Assisted Living, where on Halloween Laurine made a tradition of handing out beaded bracelets rather than candy. The staff still wears their bracelets with great fondness for their special community member. As Laurine grew older, she suffered from dementia and other ailments. Three months ago she was placed under hospice where her family often visited and continued to enjoy her good company. Here, Laurine died peacefully with the comfort of her loving family at her side.
Laurine’s welcoming smile and infectious laugh warmed the hearts of many. A living role model for all who were privileged to know her, Laurine embraced each day as a gift and each person as a friend. Without a doubt, it is difficult to say goodbye to the vibrant woman who gave so much. May it afford comfort to know we carry her beautiful legacy forward; whenever we unhesitatingly give of our time and talents, find beauty in life’s weeds, and gather around the table with our loved ones, we celebrate the many ways Laurine gifted our lives. And, in this way, we keep her spirit alive and inspiring others as she so inspired us.
Laurine Maxine Michels, aged 88, passed away peacefully on Saturday, September 14, 2019. She is survived by her devoted husband of 48 years, Charles; her children, Rebecca (Doug) Owsinski, Jackie (Brian) Holton, Karline (Maurice) Wood, Kelly (Donald) Teesdale, Charles Michels (Marge DeYoung), Laura (Jerry) Jacobs, LeAnn (Mark) Isenhoff, and Carl Michels. Laurine was loved by her many precious grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and great-great-grandchildren. A service to celebrate Laurine’s life will be held on Wednesday, September 18, at 11:00 am at Heritage Life Story Funeral Home, 2120 Lake Michigan Dr. NW, and Visitation at the funeral home on Wednesday from 10:00 am until the service begins at 11:00 am. To read more about Laurine’s life, to sign her guest book and to leave your own memory of her, visit her web page at www.heritagelifestory.com