Nature 28

Ila Mae Pioch

January 11, 1937 ~ May 3, 2021 (age 84)


If you are reading this, then I died on May 3, 2021, at my condo in Kalamazoo, MI. I was 84 years, three months, and 23 days old, for a total of 30,793 days, including 21 leap years. I had a collection of amusing obituaries and had to read a lot of obituaries to find something amusing so I hope you will enjoy this one.

The fourth of six children, I was born in Northville, MI, on January 11, 1937, a daughter of the late J. Vernon and Caroline Newton. A graduate of Northville High School in 1954, I played tenor saxophone in the band, and was class secretary my freshman and senior years. After graduation from Cleary College in Ypsilanti, in 1955, I was an executive secretary for Evans Products Co. in Plymouth for four years. From 1975 to 1980, I was a part-time secretary for the Grant Miller Advertising Agency. Today, that position is called an Administrative Assistant who does not do shorthand, is very fortunate to use a computer instead of a manual or electric typewriter and uses a printer instead of carbon paper for copies. And now there's the smart phone and that GPS thing! What great changes for the whole world.

Kenneth Pioch and I met at St. Paul's Lutheran Church in Northville and were married there on September 6, 1958. We came to the Kalamazoo area in 1961, had transfers to Milan and Auburn (lived in Bay City) then back to Kalamazoo in 1963. Our house was built in 1966 (I lived there 45 years.), the big red barn was built in 1970. Ken retired in 1986, and we enjoyed some cruises, motor coach trips, and several trips to Branson, MO. After Ken died, I sold our home and loved living in my beautiful, new condo.

I enjoyed eating out, going to the movies, reading mysteries, watching "Survivor" and the Fox News Channel on TV, doing jigsaw puzzles, and playing the piano (I had lots of sheet music of popular songs of the '40s and '50s.). I liked playing Michigan Rummy, Spite & Malice, Eight Off Solitaire, TypeRacer speed typing races, and sharing jokes on the computer. I volunteered on Fridays for many years in the office at Zion Lutheran Church and was a Girl Scout troop leader in the Singing Sands Council for several years.

I recorded Ken's genealogy research on the computer and printed the Pioch/Reese and Newton/Witt genealogy records. It was interesting and fun to do, we even took two trips to Germany for research. My brothers, Cleon and Elvin, worked on the Newton/Witt genealogy, and I updated it and added pictures. I was a news junkie and enjoyed following politics even as frustrating as that was! I also liked reading People, Time, and Newsmax magazines.

I could not predict my last meal (or even prepare it) but I would have had my roast beef hash with lots of onions, corn on the cob, and my chocolate cream pie, but will probably have an IV "meal." Make that a chocolate IV, please. My favorite treats were a Chunky candy bar (actually, anything chocolate) and Maple Nut Goodies. I preferred Pepsi. What angered me was the reduction in size, quantity, and the higher price of almost everything we use or consume, you know that's called inflation!

Survivors are daughters, Kristine Pioch (Karl Westra), Kalamazoo, and Jan (Bob) Zdzinicki, Holland, MI; grandchildren, Sarah Mosher (Mike Marlowe), Cincinnati, OH, Jared Zdzinicki and Evan Zdzinicki, Holland, MI; three brothers, Cleon Newton, Saline, MI, Walter Newton, St. Louis, MO, and Elvin Newton, Fort Wayne, IN; a sister, Cecilia Grabowski, Northville; and 13 nieces and nephews.

Preceding me in death were my husband, Ken, on October 1, 2010; sister, Alice Newton; sisters-in-law Sue Newton, Julia Newton, Sara (Sally) Newton, and Ruth Pioch; brothers-in-law Richard Pioch and Ronald Grabowski; nephew Douglas Pioch; and niece Vivian Steel. My Witt grandparents had 41 grandchildren of which 22 are deceased - now 23.

My body has been cremated, and there will be no service. My earthly life has ended and now I've moved on to enjoy a peaceful (no politics up here!) and wonderful eternity. Thank you to all who made my life so great. Loved you all! I'll be watching from above, just ask TV Long Island Medium Theresa Caputo! Bye for now - see you later! Ila

Memorials may be made to Zion Lutheran Church, 2122 Bronson Blvd., Kalamazoo, MI 49008. Arrangements entrusted to Langeland Family Funeral Homes Burial & Cremation Services, 3926 S 9th St, Kalamazoo, MI 49009. To view Ila's personalized web page, please visit


You can still show your support by sending flowers directly to the family, or by planting a memorial tree in the memory of Ila Mae Pioch


Zion Lutheran Church
2122 Bronson Blvd., Kalamazoo MI 49008
Tel: 2693822360

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