Sunday, July 22, 2018
4:00 PM to 7:00 PM EDT
Heritage Life Story Funeral Homes
Alt & Shawmut Chapel
2120 Lake Michigan Dr., N.W.
Grand Rapids, MI 49504
The Rosary will be prayed Sunday at 7:00 pm.
Monday, July 23, 2018
11:00 AM EDT
St. Mary's Catholic Church
423 First Street NW
Grand Rapids, MI 49504
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.
St. Ann's Home
2161 Leonard St. NW
Grand Rapids, MI 49504
Life Story / Obituary
Reflecting on the life of Sharon Ann Fredricks, words such as independent, determined, and funny come to mind, yet the word that is most fitting to describe her is loving. Sharon had a generous heart and loved to gather her family together over the years. They grew to count on her for organizing annual picnics, vacations, and holiday get-togethers. There simply wasn’t anything she wouldn’t do for a friend or family member in need. In return, she was repaid with so many beautiful lifelong friends, especially Joanie Troeger. A treasure in the kitchen, she loved to cook as well as bake and generously cooked for family events, shut-ins and her parish priests! Sharon was an exceptionally generous and caring woman. Sharon had a deep appreciation for the arts. She loved ceramics, making a beautiful Nativity set that is displayed annually at Christmas. She instilled a love for the theater and symphony by exposing her family from a young age. Even after the children had left the house, Sharon and Bob enjoyed attending the Pops concerts and Broadway shows as often as they could go.
Sharon was born to Lawrence and Leone (McLaughlin) McDonald on March 29th 1944 in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Born seventh of ten children, she lived a happy childhood full of fond memories. Growing up on Ann Street NE, Sharon lived a typical childhood of the times. Her father worked at the local factory, Knape & Vogt, while her mother was a homemaker. There was never a dull moment with so many siblings to play with and to look after her. Sadly, at the tender age of three years, she was struck by a car that put her in a coma for months. Always a fighter, she recovered and lived a passionate and fulfilling life. As a child, she attended St. Alphonsus Elementary and attended the church each and every Sunday with her family. Graduating from Mt. Mercy Academy with the Class of 1962, she went on to work in the packaging department where her father worked. Little did she know that the man of her dreams, Robert Fredricks worked in the shipping department! Not one to be shy, Sharon asked him to accompany her to the wedding of her dear friends, Steve and Barb Enter and the rest was history! She and Robert dated for roughly a year before he proposed. The happy couple were married in her home church, St. Alphonsus in a beautiful ceremony on September 7, 1968. They danced the night away at their reception at the Casino Club before setting off on their honeymoon to Michigan’s beautiful northern destination of Traverse City!
Sharon and Robert welcomed five children into their loving family home at 1012 Veto NW. Sadly, their youngest infant daughter, Marianne passed away at only one week old. Wonderful with children, Sharon ran a daycare out of the home when the kids started school. Later, she became certified as a nurses aide and worked at St. Gertrude’s and then for 17 years at St. Ann’s Home. As a young family, she and Robert treasured spending time taking their children on many vacations during their growing years. The Greenville Trailer Lodge became a family favorite where they enjoyed fishing, boating, and swimming. They also took trips to the popular theme park, Cedar Point, as well as the bustling cities of Washington DC, Chicago, and Toronto. With a desire to raise their children with the same values and beliefs they had as children, they enrolled all of them in the school of St. Mary’s Catholic Church where they were members. Later, they moved to 945 Collindale NW where they lived happily for more than thirty years.
Regardless of the countless hours and years she spent caring for others, Sharon’s richest rewards were her endearing relationships with her family. Close to her sisters, cousins, nieces, and nephews, she loved to get together for cards and to share good food! As much as she admired her role as a mother, she was over the moon to be a grandmother! Sharon enjoyed years of attending school events and special celebrations and often babysat them during their younger years playing cards and games. In addition to her wonderful sense of hospitality and nurturing ways, she kept herself busy in several organizations dear to her heart. Sharon was an active member of St. Mary's parish where she built strong friendships through parish, her kid's school and sporting events. In her later years, she loved being a member of her Red Hatters and Bible Study Fellowship.
Sharon and Robert shared many interests over the years. They were members of the Westgate Bowling mixed couple league, often played cards with family and friends as well as participated in the Renew group at their church. After retirement, they seized every opportunity for travel. They enjoyed touring Japan, Europe, and Hawaii. With each and every trip they genuinely loved spending time together. Sharon left a legacy of unconditional love and tenderness for her family to cherish. She will be deeply missed and her warm memories will be forever etched on the hearts of all who had the privilege to know and love her.
Sharon Ann Fredricks, aged 74, of Grand Rapids, passed away on Sunday evening, July 15, 2018, at Mercy Health – St. Mary’s. Born March 29, 1944, she was the daughter of the late, Lawrence and Leone McDonald. She is survived by her husband of 50 years, Robert J. Fredricks; her children, Joseph (Tracey) Fredricks, Katie (Mark) Spitzley, Christine Fredricks, Julie (Joe) Gaus; her grandchildren, Tyler, Jordynn, Nate, Luke, Jake, Micah, Raven, Drake and Marianna; her sister, Carole McDonald; brother-in-law and sisters-in-law, Dan (Ruth) Fredricks and Carol Fredricks; many nieces, nephews and friends. Sharon was a loving and dedicated, sister, wife, mother, grandmother who always put her family first. She will be deeply missed and lovingly remembered. She was preceded in death by her infant daughter, Maryanne, and eight of her siblings. Cremation has taken place. The Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Monday, July 23 at 11:00 am at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, 423 First St. NW. Burial in Rosedale Cemetery. Relatives and friends may meet her family on Sunday from 4:00- 7:00 pm at Heritage Life Story Funeral Home, 2120 Lake Michigan Dr. NW, with the Rosary prayed at 7:00 pm. In lieu of flowers, contributions in her memory may be made to St. Ann’s Home where she worked for 17 years. To sign her guest book and to leave your own memory of her, visit her web page at www.lifestorynet.com