Ronnie L. Russell, 71, of Battle Creek, died on Tuesday, June 16, 2020, at his home surrounded by his loving family and friends.
Ron was born on December 28, 1948 in Albion to Lloyd and Lois (Gridley) Russell. He graduated from Tekonsha High School in 1967, and remained friends with his classmates from Tekonsha schools for the rest of his life. Ron served in the United States Army during the Vietnam War, attaining the rank of Sergeant, and was honorably discharged in 1970. Ron became “Brothers” with his fellow F-Troopers in Vietnam, John Schreckengost, Larry Johnson, Al Mix, Lester (Woody) Woodward, Jack Lawrence, Gary (Doc) McKnight, Rob Koller, and Mike Shannahan. On June 3, 1989 he married Jan Fultz Woods in Burlington.
Ron retired from Statler Ready Mix in 2007 after several years as a truck driver. He also worked for many years at Clark Equipment in Battle Creek. Ron was a member and past Post Commander of the Battle Creek American Legion and a member of the Athens VFW Post 5319. Ron enjoyed farming with his father for many years, playing cards, bowling, and driving his Corvette. When he was younger, he enjoyed dirt bike racing, and at one time he was the Michigan state champion in enduro racing. Ron loved spending time with his family especially time with his children and grandchildren.
He is survived by his wife Jan; children, Monica (Eric) Blakeslee, Bradley (Michele) Russell, and Jackie Woods; grandchildren, Corey Hinton, Haylee Dotson, Chandler Wood, Bradley Russell, Colton Russell, Kaden Russell; siblings, Ken Russell, Larry (Glenys) Russell, Nancy Hamon, and Randy Russell. He was preceded in death by his parents. Ron’s family wishes to thank Pat MacDonald, his friend and tireless caregiver during his last days.
Visitation will take place from 3-6pm on Sunday, June 21, 2020 at the Kempf Family Funeral and Cremation Services 723 Old US Hwy 27 N Marshall MI 49068. ** Due to Covid19 there will be marked entrances and exits to follow for visitation**. Funeral services celebrating his life will take place at 11am on Monday, June 22, 2020 at the Kempf Family Funeral and Cremation Services 723 Old US Hwy 27 N. with Pastor Douglas Fleury officiating. Interment with Military Honors will follow at 1pm at Fort Custer National Cemetery. Memorial contributions are requested to Disabled American Veterans (https://www.dav.org/) or to the Humane Society of South Central Michigan (http://www.hsscm.org/). Memorials can be mailed to the Kempf Funeral Home PO Box 519 Marshall MI 49068 Leave a personal message for the family and sign the online guestbook at http://www.kempffuneralhome.com
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