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Arthur  Roderick

Arthur James Roderick

September 29th, 1938 - May 23rd, 2024

Arthur's Obituary

Arthur James Roderick, 85, died peacefully in his sleep Thursday, May 23, 2024. “AJ” was born September 29, 1938, the only child of Russell and Ruth Roderick, both deceased. His favorite (and final) wife of 25 years, Jeanette, preceded him in death. Arthur leaves behind his only daughter and very special son-in-law, Sheila and Mike Wood, grandchildren Haley (Scott) Raines, Maggie (Brandon) VanOosten, and Joe Wood. Art held a very special bond with his children by marriage to Jeanette: Laurie and Chuck Palanca (Claire Salter, Dr. Ariel Palanca), Linda Seiler-Davies, Rick and Beth Seiler (Jake [Kendall], Joseph, Sadie, and Luke [Alex] Seiler), Ron and Joy Seiler (Hannah [Andre] and Sarah [Regis] Seiler). He is also survived by his first wife, Ilse Roderick, second wife Carol, and third wife, Barbara. (It took him awhile to get it right!)

Art possessed a lifelong passion for sports. A standout baseball and basketball player in both high school and college, he left Missouri State University to enlist in the Army where he played baseball in Germany. There he met a flirtatious and charming German girl, Ilse, whom he married and swept off to the U.S. They settled in Seattle where he began an off-and-on career in flooring sales, and they had a daughter, Sheila. They later moved back to South Haven where Art grew up in the warm embrace of a community that helped raise him after his father disappeared in his early childhood. Art enjoyed many close friendships throughout his lifetime and will be remembered as a kind, outgoing, and fun sports fanatic with a great sense of humor.

Art enjoyed a twilight career as an affable bus driver. He was especially fond of driving the WMU volleyball team, and the feeling was mutual. He also enjoyed organizing bus trips to Washington D.C. or Branson, Missouri through Peace Lutheran Church. He brought his deep baritone singing voice to church, but also to barbershop quartets and school days choir performances. Among the other jobs he held in his colorful life: radio voice for WJOR, furniture sales for Wank’s Home Furnishing, bookie, bartender at Fidelman’s, host at Clementine’s, light bulb salesman, owner of flooring company in Renton, Washington, and insurance agent.

Art especially enjoyed attending the sporting events of his grandchildren - the Woods and the Seilers. He was a fine golfer and a member of the American Legion. It is fitting that Art will be returned to the earth of South Haven, the place that he always returned to, a town where he always felt like he was home despite his many ventures out into the world. Thank you, South Haven.

We will host a celebration of life Sunday, June 2, at 10:30 a.m. in the Peace Lutheran Church cafeteria (06321 Blue Star Memorial Hwy, South Haven, MI), following the 9:30 service. Memorial donations may be made to either Peace Lutheran Church or the American Legion. Everyone is asked to come by and share memories and refreshments.

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