Allegan County News & Union Enterprise Obituaries

Obituary: Earl Edward Calkins

Earl Edward Calkins, a beloved husband, father, grandfather, and friend, passed away peacefully on October 30, 2023, in Grand Rapids, MI. Born on December 16, 1938, in Hopkins, MI, he was the son of the late James and Mae (Nichols) Calkins and husband of Kathleen Jean (Lanting) Calkins. Earl was a proud graduate of Hopkins High School. After graduation, he bravely served his country in the United States Army. Following his service, Earl embarked on a rewarding career as a truck driver, a job he held for over 40 years. His dedication to his work was evident, and he was known for his reliability and strong work ethic.
Earl was a man of many interests and passions. He was an avid outdoorsman who loved boating, fishing, and hunting. He found great joy in the tranquility of nature and the thrill of the catch. Earl also enjoyed playing cards with his family and friends, creating memories filled with laughter and camaraderie. As a faithful Michigan Football fan, he never missed a game and was always ready to cheer on his team. In his quiet moments, Earl liked to relax while watching his favorite shows, Perry Mason and Cowboys, a testament to his love for classic television.
Along with his parents, Earl was preceded in death by his in-laws, Gerrit and Emma Lanting, Ted and Betty Visser, Mel and Mae Visser and George and Helen Lanting. Earl is survived by his loving wife of 63 years, Jean Calkins; three sons, Bill (Marlane) Calkins, Don Calkins, and Dave (Ruthe) Calkins; two siblings, Gilbert Calkins and Sandra Roobol; two grandchildren, Matthew and Michael Calkins; two step-grandchildren, Glenn and Jeffrey Ftacek; and five step great-grandchildren. His family was the light of his life, and he cherished every moment spent with them. His legacy will live on in their hearts and memories.
Friends may meet with the family on Friday, November 3, 2023 at the Gorden Funeral Residence, Hopkins Chapel, from 12:00 PM to 2:00 PM, at which time the funeral service will begin, Pastor Jonathon VanderWall and Pastor Jim Harrision co-officiating. Earl will be laid to rest in the Maplewood Cemetery.

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