Cover photo for Merton Alvin Norman's Obituary
Merton Alvin Norman Profile Photo
1937 Merton 2023

Merton Alvin Norman

August 4, 1937 — May 21, 2023

Paw Paw

Merton Alvin Norman, creator and operator of Norman Camera for 44 years, went to be with his Heavenly Father on May 21, 2023. Born in Plainwell, MI on August 4, 1937, to Leonard and Dora Norman, Mert is the third of five children, and has resided in West Michigan all his life. As a boy, Mert excelled as a baseball player until he was afflicted with polio at age 15. Then bedridden, doctors told him he would never walk again and not live past 40. Refusing to be defeated, Mert fought the prognosis and exercised rigorously until he could stand up. He walked for more than 50 years. And he lived to be 85. Never using a handicap for an excuse, Mert founded Norman Camera Company and successfully ran the Kalamazoo and Battle Creek business for nearly half a century.

Mert married Phyllis Diane Sturgis in 1967, to whom he has been a loving and faithful husband for over 55 years. He fathered Brian, Julie and Angela Norman, has been an amazing provider, and always set for his children and grandchildren a consistent example of honesty, integrity, dependability, and hard work. Mert was a generous donor to several organizations and a member of Immanuel Fellowship Church for 23 years, where he served as a deacon.

Most importantly of all, Mert accepted the free gift of eternal salvation by asking God to forgive him of all his sins through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross. Because he did this, he is now in glory, enjoying life with his Lord and with others who before having died, did the same.

Mert is preceded in death by his two daughters and one grandson: Julie Ann Norman, Angela Marie (Norman) Moore, and Wyatt Josiah Norman. He is also preceded in death by his two sisters, Reta Sackett and Marlene Whitman. He is survived by his wife, Phyllis, his son, Brian, his daughter-in-law Virginia, his son-in-law, Tom Moore, nine grandchildren, one great-granddaughter, and his brothers, Melvin and Dennis Norman. He will be dearly missed until we join him on the other side – our bodies healed – and forever gloriously alive.

Visitation will be held Friday, June 9 from 5-7:00pm at Langeland Family Funeral Homes Burial & Cremation Services, 3926 S 9th St, Kalamazoo, Michigan 49009. A funeral service will take place Saturday, June 10 at 11:00am at Immanuel Fellowship Church, 6015 W H Ave, Kalamazoo, Michigan 49009. Interment will follow immediately in Grand Prairie Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation in Mert’s name to Immanuel Fellowship Church or Shalom, Inc, P.O. Box 265, Kalamazoo, MI 49004.

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Service Schedule

Past Services


Friday, June 9, 2023

5:00 - 7:00 pm (Eastern time)

Langeland Family Funeral Home Burial & Cremation Services

3926 South 9th Street, Kalamazoo, MI 49009

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Funeral Service

Saturday, June 10, 2023

Starts at 11:00 am (Eastern time)

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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