Courier-Leader, Paw Paw Flashes, & South Haven Beacon Obituaries

Obituary: David Paul DeCou

David Paul DeCou, of Paw Paw, Michigan, devout husband, father, educator, and coach, passed away peacefully at his home, July 2, 2024.  Born on Dec. 29, 1947, to Glen and Leota DeCou in Saginaw, MI, David grew up in Vassar, Michigan.

After being the valedictorian of his graduating class at Vassar in 1966, David attended Albion College, earning a Bachelor of Arts in History and English Education in 1970.  At Albion, David was a member of the Sigma Nu fraternity and was an athlete on the basketball and track and field teams.  After graduating, David enlisted in the United States Coast Guard, serving honorably at Wilmette Harbor in Illinois.  During his time in the service, David met his wife, Charlene.  

                After being honorably discharged from the United States Coast Guard, David and Charlene moved to Kalamazoo, MI, before settling in Paw Paw in 1976.  David began his teaching career at Marcellus Community Schools.  During this time, David earned a master’s degree in social studies education from Western Michigan University.  David continued his service to Marcellus Community Schools and the Marcellus community for the next 46 years.  At the time of David’s retirement in 2020, he was teaching the fourth generation of students at Marcellus under his tenure.  David served as a teacher, coach, and athletic director during his tenure at Marcellus.  In special commemoration, the Marcellus High School track was dedicated to David during his induction into the Marcellus Athletic Hall of Fame in 2023.  David was also inducted into the Michigan Interscholastic Track Coaches Association Hall of Fame in 2024.

                A devout and loving husband to Charlene for 50 years, David had two children, Anne and Jonathan.  David enjoyed spending time with his family, spending the summers traveling to different beaches and sand dunes, canoeing, fishing, and road trips to see family. 

David is preceded in death by his father, Glen; mother, Leota; and sister, Sharon Cooney.

David is survived by his wife, Charlene; sister, Janice Potter; daughter, Anne (Tom) Coles; son, Jonathan (Ashley) DeCou; and grandchildren, Amber, Tommy, Addison, Kambree, Alexis, Grayson, Hudson; and numerous nieces and nephews.

                Memorial services were held July 8, at Adams Funeral Home, Paw Paw, with burial held July 9, at Fort Custer National Cemetery, Augusta, MI.

                In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations in David’s name be directed to St. Jude’s Children Research Hospital.

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