Larry Hovarter, 79

Larry L. Hovarter, age 79 of Sturgis, Michigan passed away late Sunday  evening November 29, 2009 at the Fairview Living Centre in Centreville.

He was born August 22, 1930 in Colon, Michigan a son to the late  Laurence E. and Velma M. (Woods) Hovarter.

Larry had resided in Sturgis since 1964 coming from Reed City. His early  life was spent in Colon and he graduated from Colon High School with the  class of 1949.

On June 25, 1954 he married JoAnn Ziglear at the First Presbyterian  Church in Sturgis.

Following over 25 years of dedicated service he retired from the  Michigan State Police in January of 1983. While with the State Police he  received many commendations for high standard of performance. One of his  many accomplishments as a state trooper was the fact that he was among  the first officers to serve with the State Police Underwater Recovery  Squad. He was a member of this squad for seven years and participated in  many recoveries of persons and property. Following his retirement he was  a corrections officer with the State Department of Corrections for  several years.

Larry was proud to have served his country in the U.S. Air Force from 1950-1954 during the Korean Conflict with the Air Police. Larry was a  talented fast pitch softball pitcher and was a member of the Air Force  Softball team and had pitched in nine different countries throughout the  world.

He was a member of the Colon Masonic Lodge, Eagles Lodge #1314,  B.P.O.Elks #1381, Neuman-Wenzel Post #73 American Legion and Captain  John J. Kelley Post #1355 VFW. He was a true outdoorsman enjoying  hunting, fishing and playing golf. He also always loved a good game of  cards especially Euchre. Larry had numerous memberships and involvements  but what was always first and most important in his life was his family.

He is survived by his loving wife of 55 years, JoAnn, Three Sons; Chip  (Mia) Hovarter, Jeff (his fiancée Mary Couch) Hovarter and Brent  Hovarter all of Sturgis, Six Grandchildren; Crystal Hovarter a student  at Michigan State University in East Lansing, Jacob Hovarter, Shayna  Hovarter, Austin Hovarter, Autumn Hovarter and Kelli Hovarter and  several nieces and nephews.

His parents and one sister; Betty J. Bailey preceded him in death. In accordance with his wishes his body has been donated for medical  research to the Michigan State University Department of Anatomy in East Lansing. A memorial service celebrating the life of Larry L. Hovarter  will be held at 11:00 A.M. Saturday at the Hackman Family Funeral Homes  – Hackman Chapel, 114 S. Nottawa St., Sturgis, MI 49091. The Rev.  Robert Keim of the First United Methodist Church will officiate.

Full military rites will be conferred by Captian John J. Kelley Post  #1355 VFW and the U.S. Air Force Honor Guard.

The family suggests those wishing to make a memorial donation in Mr.  Hovarter’s memory consider the charity of one’s choice.

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