Marinus “Joe” Meringa Jr., 83, passed away Sunday, Nov. 1, 2009 in Kalamazoo. He was born April 4, 1926 in Grand Rapids. He moved to Three Rivers with his family in 1940 where his father opened Reen’s Supermarket. Joe joined the United States Navy the same year he graduated from Three Rivers High School, June 6, 1944.
After serving in WWII Joe returned home on reserve status. While working at his father’s store he met Betty May Kennedy who worked at the pharmacy next door. They were married on Jan. 15, 1949. Joe was recalled to active duty on Oct. 8, 1951 during the Korean conflict.
Joe owned and operated the Rainbow Inn / PaPa Joe’s until he retired. He loved his family and enjoyed spending his time with them. He was an avid gardener, enjoyed golf and watching the Tigers.
He is preceded in death by his father, Marinus “Reen” Meringa, and his mother, Myrtle Meringa.
He is survived by his wife, Betty; their four children, Deborah Meringa, Nancy (Steven) Keene, Robert (Tabitha) Meringa and Mikel (Lisa) Meringa; one brother, Edward Meringa; 12 grandchildren; 17 great-grandchildren.
Memorial services will be held Thursday, Nov. 5, at 1 p.m. at the Kalamazoo First Assembly of God, 5550 Oakland Drive, Portage.
Military honors will follow the memorial service conducted by the Veteran’s of Foreign Wars Post #3030, Otsego. Joe will be interred at the Riverside Cemetery in Three Rivers afterward.
Contributions in memory of Joe may be made to Kalamazoo First Assembly of God Mission programs