EBEN JUNCTION - Howard Maki, 84, of Eben Junction, passed away at Select Specialty Covenant Hospital in Saginaw on Dec. 10, 2013, following complications from cancer treatment. He was born on June 27, 1929, in Marquette, to the late Matt and Laina Maki. He graduated from John D. Pierce High School in Marquette in 1948. In 1956, he married Carol Durand and they were married four years before she preceded him in death. After working at a department store for many years, he began his education at Northern Michigan University. Early in his schooling, Howard married Florence (Hautamaki) Elson on Aug. 3, 1963. They both continued to work and Howard graduated with a degree in social work in 1966. Howard then moved to Iron Mountain where he worked as a social worker in child welfare for the State of Michigan for 24 years until his retirement in 1991. He and his wife Florence later relocated to her family homestead/farm in Eben Junction.
Howard was committed to his Lord and Savior and was very involved in the St. Mark's Lutheran Church in Marquette, Our Savior's Lutheran Church in Iron Mountain and Calvary Free Lutheran Church in Eben. He loved to keep active, and living at the family farm in Eben afforded endless opportunities for repair and maintenance projects. Howard and Florence were avid travelers during their retirement, visiting friends and family all around the US and the world, including Africa and Finland. Howard was keenly interested in his Finnish heritage, studied the language and attended many Finnish festivals. He was a huge fan of the Detroit Tigers and Red Wings, and played both hockey and baseball in his younger years. He also enjoyed golf, bowling and horseshoes. Howard was a blessing to all who knew him and will be missed dearly.
Howard is survived by his wife of 50 years - Florence of Eben; children - Wayne (Bonnie) Elson of Issaquah, Wash., Rebecca (William) Erickson of Saginaw, Naomi (Gary) Greene of Scottsdale, Ariz., Philip (Dorothy) Maki of Redondo Beach, Calif., and Melinda (John) Holtz of Lilongwe, Malawi; grandchildren - Tyler and Lydia Elson of Issaquah, David (Mandy) Erickson of Ishpeming, Michael and Nathan Erickson of Marquette, Scott Greene of San Diego, Ben and Emily Greene of Scottsdale, Grace Maki of Redondo Beach, and Rachel and Heather Holtz of Lilongwe, Malawi; and five great-grandchildren - Jassmin, Olivia, Jeremiah, Isaiah, and Laina.
A visitation will take place from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Eastern time on Friday, Dec. 20 at the Bowerman Funeral Home in Munising. Visitation will also be held at Calvary Free Lutheran Church in Eben Junction on Saturday, Dec. 21, from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. Eastern time with a funeral service to follow, officiated by Pastor Tom Schierkolk.
Interment will be at the Northland Chapel Gardens cemetery in Negaunee in the spring.
Memorial donations may be made in Howard's memory to World Mission Prayer League at 232 Clifton Avenue, Minneapolis, MN 55403 (wmpl.org).
His obituary and guestbook may be viewed and signed at www.bowermanfuneralhome.net.