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Mary Duika

Mary Duika

Died: Thursday, September 01, 2011
Age: 92
Grosse Pointe resident Mary Duika, 92, died Thursday, Sept. 1, 2011.

She was the beloved wife of Paul, who predeceased her, and loving mother of Dennis (Diane) Duika, Michael (Kaye) Duika and Mary Ann Miller. She was the proud grandmother of Jason Duika and Alexandra Miller and sister of Tatiana Shamie.

Mrs. Duika is also survived by many loving family and friends.

She was loved deeply and will be missed greatly.

A private memorial service will be held at a future date.

Express condolences or share a memory at cremationmichigan.com.

Catherine J. Marshall

Died: Thursday, September 01, 2011
Age: 79
Longtime Grosse Pointe Park resident Catherine J. Marshall, 79, passed away Thursday, Sept. 1, 2011, after a long and courageous struggle with illness.

She was born Jan. 18, 1932, in Coleman to Melvina and Theodore Marshall. She was the beloved mother of Theodore and Catherine, but was known by everyone as “Mom.” She was the cornerstone of the neighborhood, befriended anyone and always had an open door and open heart.

She enjoyed cooking and canning and shared the fruits of her labor with friends and especially her grandchildren. Her family said it was well- known that if you were hungry, “Mom” always had something for you.

Ms. Marshall loved her family and friends and was especially proud of her three grandchildren, Alison, Ashley and Michael. She loved passing on stories or funny jokes and was the life of a party. Her American Indian heritage was special to her and her family believes her strong beliefs will guide her in her afterlife. She will be missed greatly by family and friends.

Ms. Marshall is survived by her son, Theodore Marshall; daughter, Catherine (John) Pomaville; grandchildren, Alison and Ashley Pomaville and Michael Marshall; sisters, Barbara Muessig-Short, Mercedes Thomas and Mary Marshall and brother, Theodore Marshall Sr., as well as several generations of nieces and nephews.

She was predeceased by her parents, Theodore and Melvina and her brother, Wilmer.

Donations may be made to Liggett Breast Center, St. John Health Foundation, P.O. Box 673271, Detroit, MI 48267-3271.

Funeral services were held Sept. 3, at the Church of Daniel’s Band in Midland. Burial was in the Warren Township Cemetery in Coleman.

Barbara J. Bentley

Barbara J. Bentley

Died: Wednesday, August 31, 2011
Age: 77
City of Grosse Pointe resident Barbara J. Bentley, 77, passed away peacefully Wednesday, Aug. 31, 2011, following a courageous battle with cancer.

Born and raised in Stoke-On-Trent, England, she survived the German air raids during World War II, graduated with honors from St. Dominic’s High School in 1950, and married Airman 1st Class Raymond J. Trudel, of Detroit, Nov. 1, 1952, at St. Augustine’s Church in Stoke-on-Trent. She immigrated to the United States in February 1954 with her infant son, Michael. They lived in Cape Cod, Mass. before settling in Detroit upon Mr. Bentley’s honorable discharge from the U.S. Air Force in 1956.

Mrs. Bentley helped provide for her family by working as an executive secretary. In 1962, the family bought a home in Fraser. It was shortly thereafter, she discovered local community theater. She was cast in a production with the St. Clair Shores Players, where she made connections that led her to the Grosse Pointe Theatre and the beginning of a 48-year relationship.

In 1963, Mrs. Bentley was cast in the Grosse Pointe Theatre show “Teahouse of the August Moon,” as geisha Lotus Blossom. It was the first of 18 comedic, dramatic and musical roles she had over the years. She loved being in the ensemble of “Annie” that included both her son and granddaughter, the first GPT production to feature three generations of one family in the cast.

Although accomplished on stage, she enjoyed directing. Her first GPT directorial assignment was 1977’s “Catch Me if You Can.” For her second effort, “Equus,” Mrs. Bentley received GPT’s highest honor, a Clarence Award for best director, the first of nine she would receive. She directed her 12th and final show for GPT earlier this year, the charming English comedy, “Relatively Speaking.”

While involved with GPT, Mrs. Bentley pursued a college education. She began taking classes at Macomb Community College, then transferred to Oakland University, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in history and graduated cum laude in 1975. During her time at OU, she also began working at several law firms as a legal secretary. It was a few years after her graduation, she enrolled in Wayne State University’s Law School. Working as a paralegal during the day and taking classes at night, she received her law degree in 1984 and passed the bar in 1985. For the next 25-plus years, she practiced law, focusing on personal legal issues for friends and family, and accepting assignments from Wayne County Probate and Juvenile Court.

Mrs. Bentley is survived by her sister, Avril Pritchard and her nephew, Steve Pritchard, of England; son, Michael Trudel; daughter-in-law, Leslie, and grandchildren, David and Elizabeth, all of Grosse Pointe Park.

Donations may be made to the Grosse Pointe Theatre Memorial Fund at gpt.org.

Ann Marie Fermoile

Ann Marie Fermoile

Died: Sunday, August 28, 2011
Ann Marie Fermoile, nee Cusick, of Cape Coral, Fla., passed away Sunday, Aug. 28, 2011.

She was raised in Detroit and Grosse Pointe by her parents, William and Dorthea Cusick and attended the University of Detroit and Wayne State University.

Mrs. Fermoile worked as a secretary for Sen. Patrick McNamara in Washington D.C., on the campaign for Lt. Gov. Glen Anderson in California, as a subscription manager for Time-Life Book division in Chicago, a manager for National Bank of Detroit and a logistics consultant for Metropolitan Life.

One of her many adventures included sailing around the world with her husband.

Mrs. Fermoile is survived by her husband of 43 wonderful years, James L.S. Fermoile; brother, Thomas Cusick of Northbrook, Ill.; sister, Jeanne Perry of Lake Forest, Ill. and numerous nieces, nephews and godchildren.

She was predeceased by her parents and brothers, Patrick and Paul Cusick.

Memorial Masses will be celebrated at 10 a.m. Friday, Sept. 9, at Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal Catholic Church in Florida and Saturday, Sept. 17, at St. Norbert Catholic Church in Northbrook, Ill.

Donations may be made to either Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal Catholic Church, 12165 Stringfellow Road, Bokeelia, FL 33922 or St. Norbert Catholic Church, 1809 Walters Ave., Northbrook, IL 60062.

Express condolences or share a memory at nationalcremation.com.

Mary Jenkins Blevins

Mary Jenkins Blevins

Died: Saturday, August 27, 2011
Age: 84
Former Grosse Pointe resident Mary Jenkins Blevins, 84, of Willow Street, Pa., passed away Saturday, Aug. 27, 2011. She was born Aug. 16, 1927, in Charleston, W.V., the youngest of five children of George W. Jenkins and Elsa Riley Jenkins.

She graduated from Stonewall Jackson High School in 1946 and received a Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism from Marshall University, Huntington, W.V., in 1950, where she was vice president of the Pi Kappa Sigma sorority; vice president of the journalism fraternity, the Fourth Estate; and listed in “Who’s Who Among Students in American Colleges and Universities.” She married William Edward Blevins Aug. 25, 1951, in Charleston. They lived in Grosse Pointe, where their three children graduated from Grosse Pointe South High School, before relocating to Lancaster County, Pa., in 2004.

Before their marriage, Mrs. Blevins worked at the Charleston Gazette as a reporter of social events. In New York City, she worked as a researcher at the March of Time, a Time-Life subsidiary. Upon moving to Grosse Pointe, she was an active member of the Grosse Pointe Congregational Church; the American Association of University Women; and Detroit’s Goodwill Junior Group. She also volunteered at Bon Secours Hospital and was a longtime member of the Daughters of the American Revolution. She loved to travel with her husband and children throughout the United States, Europe and Asia.

Mrs. Blevins was an active contributor to the HHT Foundation and she strongly supported the research, education and treatment of those with the blood disorder hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasia.

Mrs. Blevins is survived by her loving and devoted husband of 60 years; children, Jennifer (Christopher) of Glen Ridge, N.J., and Bradley (Anne) of Glen Ellyn, Ill.; nine grandchildren and her sister, Frances Van Cleve, of Charleston.

She was predeceased by her son, Jeffrey and her parents.

Visitation will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 2, at Wilson’s Funeral Home, 420 Lee Street, Charleston.

The funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 3, at Christ Church United Methodist, 1221 Quarrier Street, Charleston.

Donations may be made to the HHT Foundation at hht.org.

Express condolences or share a memory at wilsonfuneralandcremation.com.

Serie Frazer

Serie Frazer

Died: Saturday, August 27, 2011
Age: 77
Serie Frazer, 77, of Vero Beach, Fla., died Saturday, Aug. 27, 2011.

She was born Feb. 4, 1934, in Philadelphia to Oliver and Serie Wigton. She was self-employed as an interior decorator.

Mrs. Frazer is survived by her daughter, Elizabeth (Tom) Smith; sons, John (Christine) Frazer and Brad (Susan) Frazer; grandchildren, Ashley Mason, Garrett Zable, Lindsey Hotchkiss, John Frazer and Allison Frazer. She also is survived by her great-grandchildren, Tyler Wierzbecki, Hunter Hotchkiss and Lucas Hotchkiss.

She was predeceased by her brother, David Wigton.

Visitation will be held from 3 to 8 p.m. Sept. 1 at Chas. Verheyden Funeral Home, Inc., 16300 Mack, Grosse Pointe Park. The funeral service will be at 7 p.m.

Express condolences or share a memory at verheyden.org.

Paul Alfred Szabo

Paul Alfred Szabo

Died: Tuesday, August 23, 2011
Age: 97
Longtime Grosse Pointe Woods resident Paul Alfred Szabo, 97, passed away Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2011, surrounded by his loved ones.

He was born Feb. 27, 1914, in Chicago, the son of Paul and Anna Szabo. He spent his early years in South Bend, Ind., and Cleveland.

Mr. Szabo served in the Civilian Conservation Corps during the early 1930s. He was drafted into the Army during World War II, serving as a drill instructor in the United States, before shipping off to the European Theatre. In 1951, he married Jackie Jakimec and they settled in Grosse Pointe Woods shortly thereafter.

Professionally, Mr. Szabo was an orthopedic shoe fitter and worked at several shoe stores in the Detroit area.

He was an avid runner with 20 marathons completed between the ages of 65 and 82. His many interests included ushering at various Detroit venues and singing with church and local choirs. He also spent many volunteer hours working for Habitat for Humanity. He was a member of the Senior Men’s Club of Grosse Pointe and St. Joan of Arc Catholic Church.

Mr. Szabo is survived by his loving companion, Toni Ferlito; daughter, Sue Klink; son, Robert (Monica) Szabo and grandchildren, Andrea Szabo, Stephen Szabo, Katie Klink, Kyle Klink, Jack Klink and Kimberly Szabo.

He was predeceased by his wife, Jackie in 1990.

A funeral Mass was celebrated Aug. 26 at St. Joan of Arc Catholic Church in St. Clair Shores.

Donations may be made to the American Lung Association National Headquarters, 1301 Pennsylvania Ave. N.W., Suite 800, Washington, D.C. 20004 or a charity of the donor’s choice.

Express condolences or share a memory at ahpeters.com.

Russell Forest Piché

Russell Forest Piché

Died: Monday, August 22, 2011
Russell Forest “Forre” Piché died Monday, Aug. 22, 2011, of natural causes.

Mr. Piché is survived by his wife of 67 years, Marie Piché and their eight loving children, Greg (Tamara) Piché of Denver, Guy (Vivian) Piché of Redding, Calif., Gary (Mary) Piché of Colorado Springs, Colo., Gordon (Cathy) Piché of Grosse Pointe Park, Renee Van Assche of Northville, Grant (Donna) Piché of Winter Haven, Fla., Regina (Mark) Billiet of St. Clair Shores and Glen (Bridget) Piché of Chandler, Ariz. He also is survived by 23 grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren, as well as his sister, Thelma Marchand of St Clair Shores.

Mr. Piché graduated from St. Paul High School in 1938 and served in the U.S. Navy during World War II.

He was a passionate, life-long fan of Detroit professional sports teams, especially the Detroit Tigers.

He was instrumental in the creation of Little League baseball in both the City of Grosse Pointe and Clinton Township.

Mr. Piché spent his life as a barber. Piché’s Barber Shop was a mainstay business in the Village in the City of Grosse Pointe for more than 50 years. Many people remember their interesting conversations with Mr. Piché about sports and politics while watching a Tigers game on television.

Visitation will be held from 2 to 8 p.m. Friday, Aug. 26, at Chas. Verheyden Funeral Home, 16300 Mack, Grosse Pointe Park.

A funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 27, at St. Paul on the Lake Catholic Church, 157 Lakeshore, Grosse Pointe Farms. Visitation begins at 9:15 a.m. at the church.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers, c/o Brother Edward Redmond, P.O. Box 302, Maryknoll, NY 10545.

Fouad AlNajjar

Fouad AlNajjar

Died: Monday, August 22, 2011
Age: 64
Grosse Pointe Woods resident Fouad AlNajjar, 64, passed away peacefully at Henry Ford Hospital Monday, Aug. 22, 2011.

Born July 1, 1947, in Baghdad, Iraq, AlNajjar was dean of graduate studies at Baker College Flint campus. He received his PhD from the University of Strathclyde in the United Kingdom. He also was an accounting professor for many years at Baker College, Davenport University, and Wayne State University.

He enjoyed traveling, playing badminton, gardening and taking walks with his wife. He was active in the community and adored by many. His greatest joy in life was spending time with his family.

AlNajjar is survived by his wife, Faye; children, Wisam (Nozomi), Samer (Angela) and Ramiz and granddaughter, Kohana.

A private burial was held Aug. 25 and a memorial visitation was held Aug. 27 at A.H. Peters Funeral Home in Grosse Pointe Woods.

Marie Louise Bergeon

Marie Louise Bergeon

Died: Monday, August 22, 2011
Age: 89
Marie Louise Bergeon, nee Keller, of Midland, died Monday Aug. 22, 2011, at her daughter’s residence. The former 50-year Grosse Pointe Park resident was 89.

She was born May 28, 1922, in Detroit to Theodore Emil and Ella Marie, nee Verg, Keller. She graduated from Western High School in Detroit in 1940, and attended Wayne State University in the 1940s. On Oct. 21, 1955, she married A. Stanley Bergeon, who predeceased her in 1975.

Mrs. Bergeon was a member of Peace Lutheran Church in Detroit for more than 60 years. During that time, she served in many capacities, including as a Sunday School teacher, public relations chairperson on the board of directors, editor and business manager of The Peace Messenger, and chairperson of PROP, a revitalization program that raised $60,000 for repairs to the church and school. In 1987, she was named the church’s woman of the year.

Mrs. Bergeon worked at both the Detroit News and Detroit Free Press for a combined total of 30 years, starting at the News in 1946. While at the Detroit Free Press in 1972, as classified telephone room manager, she began selling “Happy Ads” by which people sent pleasant messages to each other on special occasions. It was an instant success as a moneymaker and a circulation-builder.

After retiring from the Free Press, Mrs. Bergeon worked for the Grosse Pointe Park public service department, where in 2002 she retired after 20 years of service.

Mrs. Bergeon is survived by her daughter, Karen Ellen Mills and her husband, Brian Stanford Mills of Midland; grandchildren, Jeffrey Patrick Mills of Greenville, S.C., and Amy Elisabeth Mills of Indianapolis.

Donations may be made to Friends of the Grosse Pointe Public Library, 10 Kercheval Ave., Grosse Pointe Farms, MI 48236 or to the Grosse Pointe Animal Adoption Society, 296 Chalfonte, Grosse Pointe Farms, MI 48236.

Arrangements handled by Wilson Miller Funeral Home of Midland. Share a memory at wilson-miller.com.
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