Barckholtz, Darwin A. “Andy”, Saginaw, Michigan

Passed away at age 90 on Thursday, December 22, at St. Mary’s of Michigan. He was born July 19, 1921, to the late Andrew and Gladys Barckholtz in St. Charles, Michigan. As the youngest of five boys, he joined the family working on the farm while also attending school. There he met Phyllis Stapleton and married her on December 10, 1942, before leaving to serve in World War II. Upon returning from the war, Andy and Phyl settled in Saginaw where Andy worked for U.S. Graphite for more than 30 years. They raised two boys and enjoyed traveling throughout the United States and to their cottage on Jose Lake near Hale. Andy was a regular volunteer at church fish fries – and remained a master fryer his entire life. He was also a regular soloist at his churches. Andy retired in 1976 and moved to Florida’s Pine Island, where he and Phyl spent most of the year enjoying friends, the abundant fruit trees in their yard, traveling, walking, fishing, tandem bicycling, and church activities at Fisher’s of Men Lutheran Church. They returned to Saginaw each summer for nearly 35 years to visit family and friends. Up until an untimely fall in his home earlier his month, Andy enjoyed excellent health and walked a mile a day. He willingly participated in son Terry’s various construction projects at the farm and cottage, happily humming the whole time. In recent years, he built a sunroom on his home in Florida – then rebuilt it after Hurricane Charley blew it down. Andy faithfully cared for Phyl for nearly eight years as her health declined due to Alzheimer’s disease. She died less than a year ago on January 29, 2011. Andy returned to Saginaw to be near family and, while he desperately missed his wife, he enjoyed attending his grandchildren’s softball, baseball and basketball games, concerts, puttering in his shed, and mowing lawns – his own and Terry’s. This fall, he and youngest son Randy took a two-week road trip adventure to Florida and Houston. Andy is survived by two sons, Terry (Melinda) Barckholtz of Hemlock and Randy (Joy) Barckholtz of Friendswood, TX; sister-in-law Lois Cleworth of San Luis Obispo, CA; brother-in-law James (Imogene) Stapleton of East Jordan; grandchildren Jessica Osborn of Portage, Jason (Deanne) Barckholtz of Bozeman, MT, Jennifer Barckholtz of Orlando, FL, Lindsay Barckholtz of Friendswood, TX, Claire and Clay Barckholtz of Hemlock; great grandchildren Sarah, Christian, Andrew, Lauren and Jake; as well as many nieces and nephews. Andy is predeceased by his parents and brothers Walter (Doris), Norm (Dorothy), Jim (Fran) and Glenn (Nellie) Barckholtz. Funeral service will take place on Thursday, December 29, at 11:00 a.m. at Peace Lutheran Church, 3427 Adams Ave., with Pastor C. William Weis officiating. Friends and family may call at W. L. Case and Co. Funeral Chapel, 4480 Mackinaw Road, on Wednesday from 5-8 p.m. and between 10:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. on Thursday before the funeral. Those wishing to honor Andy’s life are encouraged to sip a good cup of coffee in a foam cup, smoke a cigar, hum a tune, and praise the Lord. Those planning an expression of sympathy are asked to consider the St. Mary’s of Michigan Foundation.