Near, Lee R., Merrill, Michigan

Passed away Saturday, October 8, 2011, at the Cartwright Hospice Residence. Age 75 years. The son of the late Clarence and Irma (Rapson) Near was born October 15, 1935 in Huron County, Michigan. He married Catherine Powell, July 30, 1955. She passed away in 2002. He later married Carolyn Bailey, of Shepherd, MI, April 9, 2005. She survives him. He had been employed by General Motors, retiring with over 35 years of service. He attended the Alma First Presbyterian Church. He was a member of the Traffic Club. He enjoyed bowling and golf, participating in several leagues. Lee loved the out-of-doors, camping, hunting and fishing, but especially enjoyed his home in the country, nestled in the woods. Surviving besides his wife, Carolyn, are three daughters and their spouses, Paula and Dave Weed, Hemlock, MI; Claudia and Rick Kanuszewski; Monica Near, all of Saginaw; two step-children, Scott and Gail Walldorff, Greenville, MI; Denise and Mark Palmer, St. Johns, MI; eleven grandchildren, Catrina Weber, Serena Weed, Miranda Schwind, Harmony Terry, Autumn Kanuszewski, Caleb Kanuszewski; Grace Palmer, Jada Palmer, Kyle Walldorff, Neil Walldorff, Christian Walldorff; eight great grandchildren, Tyler, Paige, Mason, Noah, Braden, Skylar, Ian and Aurora; three brothers, four sisters and their spouses, Charles and Alice Near; Glen and Shirley Near; Clarence Near Jr. and his wife, Linda; Winifred Darby; Dorothy Phillips; Helen and Louis Underwood; Donna and Earl Proctor; many nieces and nephews. A daughter, Caren Lee Near and a sister Marian Donaldson, have predeceased him. The funeral service will take place on Wednesday, October 12, 2011 at 11:00 a.m. at Alma First Presbyterian Church, 495 Charles Ave., Alma. Rev. Thomas Brackbill and Rev. Mary Ann Evans-Justin will officiate with burial in Swan Creek Twp. Cemetery. Friends may call at the Church from 9:30 a.m. Wednesday until the time of the funeral service. Those planning an expression of sympathy may wish to consider the Cartwright Hospice Residence c/o V.N.A. Hospice, 500 S. Hamilton, Saginaw, MI. 48602 or the Alma First Presbyterian Church.