January 2, 1924 - August 31, 2013 Resided in Portage, MI
Bockstanz, Ernest L. "Ernie"
of Portage, Michigan
Passed away at Rose Arbor Hospice Residence on Saturday, August 31, 2013. Age 89. He was born in Grosse Pointe, MI on January 2, 1924, the son of the late Louis and Winnie (Wright) Bockstanz. He served with the United States Army Air Corp. during World War II, where he was a navigator on a B-17 and was a prisoner of war. He was employed by the Kalamazoo County Road Commission and then as a civil engineer for the United States Air Force at the Pentagon, retiring in 1995. Ernest was a past member of Fourth Reformed Church. He enjoyed volunteering at the Air Zoo and spending time with his grandchildren and great-grandchildren and attending their sporting events. He was married to Wilma (Ohman) Bockstanz in 1946; she preceded him in death in 2003. He is survived by his children, Larry Bockstanz of Las Vegas, NV, Andrea Ailes of Kalamazoo, Marilyn Leland of Anchorage, AK and Michael (Alice) Bockstanz of Portage; five grandchildren, Kevin Ailes, Jeremy (Rochelle) Ailes, Chad Ailes, Alicia (Ron) Crandall and Michelle (Brian) VanderBor; seven great-grandchildren, Sean Ailes, Jessica Ailes, Bradley Ailes, Jayden Ailes, Yazmene VanderBor, Trenton VanderBor and Collin Crandall; a sister, Leila Brokstad of Muskegon, MI; and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his daughter-in-law, Hilary Bockstanz; and three brothers, Louis, Glenn and Irving. Friends may visit with the family from 2:00 – 4:00 & 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. on Wednesday, September 4, 2013 at the Langeland Family Funeral Homes, Westside Chapel, 3926 S. 9th St. The funeral service will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Thursday, September 5, 2013 at Greenwood Reformed Church. Pastor Jim VanderRoest will officiate. Interment with military honors will take place 1:00 p.m. on Friday at Tallman Cemetery in Tallman, MI. Memorials may be made to a charity of the donor's choice.