Ellis LaVerne “Al” Hicks, 96, of St. Johns, MI, passed away Wednesday, February 26, 2020, at Grace Haven Assisted Living, St. Johns, MI.
In the Spring, Graveside Services will be held at Lowe Cemetery, St. Johns, MI.
Ellis was born in Greenbush Township, MI on October 8, 1923, the son of Leon F. and Carrie (Gilson) Hicks. He was the Salutatorian of the Maple Rapids High School class of 1943. Ellis proudly served his country in the U.S. Army; serving across Europe and participating in the Battle of the Bulge. He actively supported the Vets and was a proud member of the Mid-Michigan Chapter, 82nd Airborne Division Association. On February 17, 1946 Ellis married Letha Jane Fillhard in Letha's parents' backyard, Alma, MI. Together they celebrated their 74th anniversary this month.
Ellis was happiest when outdoors fishing, hunting and gardening. He was always proud of his lush green lawn and sweet red strawberries. He began working for General Motors in 1949 and retired as a machine repairman in 1979 after 30 years of service.
Ellis is survived by his wife Letha Hicks; 4 daughters: Cheryl (Jim) Naffziger of Mecosta, MI, Jennifer French of Kingman, AZ, Krystal (John) Chapman of Page, AZ, and Katrinka Fetzner of St. Johns, MI; 4 grandchildren: Jodie (Aaron) Ballow, Alan Fetters, Carrie (Phil) Ramirez, and Matthew (Crystal) Fetzner. He is also survived by 6 great-grandchildren: Zachary Ballow, Oscar Ramirez, Isaiah Ramirez, Mia Ramirez, Riley Fetzner, and Keira Fetzner; and many nieces and nephews. Ellis was preceded in death by his parents, 2 sons-in-law: John Fetzner and Jim Ellery; infant great-grandson Rafe Ramirez, and siblings: Robert, Ruth, Irene, Orval, Oral, and Harold.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Honor Flight - 4601 North Fairfax Drive, Suite 1200, Arlington, Virginia 22203, www.honorflight.org Online condolences can be made at www.smithfamilyfuneralhomes.com. The family is being served by Smith Family Funeral Homes - Osgood Chapel, St. Johns, MI.