Gregory Allan Koroch
November 4th, 1951 - November 19th, 2022
Greg was born on November 4, 1951 to Ken and Mary (Adams) Koroch and was raised on his family’s small farm in Spinks Corners. It was there, working side-by-side with his family, including his grandparents and a colorful collection of farmhands, that he had many of his fondest memories. The experiences of working to plant, tender, pick and pack fruits and vegetables influenced his life on many levels.
He attended Benton Harbor High School, which was quite a change from his K-8 education at Spinks Corner School that only had four rooms, four teachers, and less than a hundred students. However, he adjusted and became tri-captain of the football team, was active in choir, and participated in a variety of other clubs and organizations – several of which he served as president.
After graduating from BHHS, Greg attended and graduated from Central Michigan University. As a student there he booked concerts for the university and started an organization that provided student support for university fund raising, alumni and student recruitment programs.
His professional career began in Ypsilanti where he served as the community’s first Manager of the local chamber of commerce’s Visitors and Convention Bureau. He then moved on to become the head of Eastern Michigan University’s Annual Giving, and later was appointed to head the university’s fund-raising program.
Greg met his future wife Deborah while they both worked at EMU. Shortly thereafter they returned to the BH/SJ area where he began his 31-year career at Lake Michigan College. During his time at the College, he served under five presidents and served a brief stint as the interim president.
Greg loved working with the scores of volunteers and the dedicated staff at the College. He counted himself as fortunate to have worked with so many of these individuals to plan and implement many fund-raising programs and other campaigns leading to a number of important College programs. Notable among those were the completion of the Mendel center, the construction of the College’s Bertrand Crossing campus, and the campaign to bring the South Haven area in the College district and eventual construction of the South Haven campus. He also helped with initiatives to raise scholarships that provided financial support for thousands of students.
Greg’s family was a top priority. He cherished the time he spent with his two boys, Justin and Ryan, normally playing baseball. Rarely, did he ever miss a game or a school program of any type. Later in life he loved playing golf with them and relished the conversations they had on the course. Family vacations to the Caribbean, Hawaii, and “up north” ranked high on his great memories list. As did family gatherings of any type for any reason. He loved cooking family meals whether it be nightly dinners holiday meals like turkey and all the fixings for Thanksgiving, or his special chicken strips on New Year’s Day.
Deborah and Greg were married for 41 years. They built a life together, and in the process attended hundreds of ballgames, traveled, and took great joy in watching their boys build careers and families. After retirement they moved to Florida for three years until they moved back to the area in 2019. For the last several years Greg courageously battled his illness with great stoicism and a positive outlook, always treasuring the moments he had with his friends and family.
Greg is survived by his wife and two sons, Ryan (Melissa) Reffitt and, their two children Jackson and Reid, of Kalamazoo; and Justin (Lacie) Koroch of McKinney, Texas and their son Paxton. Greg is also survived by his brother Tom of South Bend and his wife Cindy and their daughter Nicole.
A Celebration of Life Memorial Service will be held Wednesday, December 28, 2022 at 12 PM at Starks & Menchinger Chapel, 2650 Niles Rd., St. Joseph, MI. Friends may visit with the family an hour prior to the service. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Koroch & Reffitt Families Scholarship at Lake Michigan College or the Caring Circle. Those wishing to leave an online condolence may do so at www.starks-menchinger.com.
the Koroch & Reffitt Families Scholarship at Lake Michigan CollegeCaring Circle
View the current service details below. Sign up for email or text updates to receive notifications of any changes to service schedules or important information.