Now safe in the arms of Jesus, Ronald Bleecker, 86, beloved husband, father and grandfather passed away peacefully at home on January 4, 2012 in Adrian, Michigan.
He was born on July 7, 1925 to Maitland and Zana Bleecker in Hampton, Virginia and lived his early years in northern New Jersey. Mr. Bleecker was a World War II veteran who served in the European Theatre of Operations. On November 14, 1944, he was wounded while fighting in the battle to capture Metz, France. For this he received a purple heart with an oak leaf cluster and a bronze star. He was taken prisoner and spent the next six months as a POW in Germany. Upon his escape and subsequent return to the States, he enrolled in the University of Michigan from which he graduated in 1950. He then began a long and successful career in college administration. In 1990, he retired as VP of Finance and Treasurer of Adrian College after 25 years of service. He was also one of the founding members of Grace Point Evangelical Free Church. His favorite past time was his many hunting and fishing trips to Canada with friends and family over the years. Ronald married Helene Palpant on June 25, 1948. He is survived by his wife of 63 years, Helene, and their three children: Deb (Frank) Kaylor of Aurora, Colorado; Annette (Glenn) Pearson of Marietta, Georgia; and James (JoLynne) Bleecker of Adrian, Michigan; and nine grandchildren, Britt (Will) Restrepo of Fort Collins, CO, Kristin Trovillion of Chicago, IL; Casey (John) Frey of Denver, CO., Andrew Pearson of Boulder, CO, Stephanie Pearson of Los Angeles, CA, and Jason, Justin, Jennifer Bleecker of Adrian, and Jonathan Bleecker of Columbia, SC. He is also survived by his brother Allan (Olga) Bleecker of Honey Brook, PA, and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his father and mother.
A visitation will be held from 2-4 and 6-8 p.m., Sunday, January 8, 2012 at the Anderson Funeral home at 3050 W. Beecher Road in Adrian. A celebration of Ronald Bleecker’s life is scheduled for Monday, January 9th, at 11:00 a.m. at the Grace Point EFC, 4612 N. Adrian Hwy, Adrian with Pastor John Trimble officiating. Visitation will be one hour before the service. The committal service will be for family only. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests gifts to the missionary fund of Grace Point EFC. Envelopes are available at the Anderson Funeral Home, Adrian. “Through all of this I have known that God above in His great infinite care has guided me and given me health and strength. And by His will and grace someday soon I’ll return to those I love. God protect us all and keep us till that great day! Ronald Bleecker (POW, age 19) Written while in Stalag III A, Luckenwalde in April 1945” Taken from the preface of his book FAITH & FORTITUDE, Published by Mill City Press, 2011.