IRON MOUNTAIN - Lucien Robert (Lou) Fontaine, 86, died peacefully of complications of emphysema, diabetes and heart disease, surrounded by loved ones at the home of his daughter Patricia in Golden Valley, Minn., on Sept. 6, 2012.
Lou was born May 25, 1926, in Iron Mountain, to Anna (Trudell) and Lucien Joseph Fontaine. His father was a foreman at the Ford Motor Co., and Lou fondly recalled growing up at 275 Cass Ave. in the "Ford Addition."
He graduated from Kingsford High School in 1944, and enlisted in the Navy. He served as a pharmacist's mate at mainland hospitals and was honorably discharged in July 1946.
Lou attended the University of Michigan, graduated with a degree in chemistry in 1950, and remained a true-blue Wolverine fan throughout his life.
He married Beatrice Fossitt in Newberry on Sept. 1, 1950.
Lou worked for the Dow Chemical Co. in Bay City and then Midland, Mich. for 30 years, becoming a senior research chemist. Even in his declining years, he could amaze his grandchildren by describing a chemical reaction for creating polyurethane foam. He spoke modestly of a patent he obtained for that process. He often reminisced, "It was easy to keep working because I was doing something I enjoyed."
Lou spent a happy retirement in Concord, Calif. enjoying travel and photography with the second love of his life, Goldie.
Lucien was preceded in death by his parents; his wife Beatrice (1983); and daughter Jennifer Schrum (2003).
He will be mourned by his brother Donald C. Fontaine (Sallie), sister Cynthia Masilunas (John deceased), son Donald Dexter Fontaine (Dana), daughter Patricia Fontaine Conboy (Greg), and grandchildren Jessica Thomas Dooley, Gary Schrum III, Caitlin and Michael Conboy, and Alex and Jacqueline Fontaine.
Lou's expressed wishes were to be cremated. A memorial celebration of his life is being planned for October in Midland, Mich.