Norman K. Parker of Lake City, formerly of Farmington Hills and Melvindale, passed away at home on April 27, 2020. He was 94 years old.
Norm was born April 30, 1925, to John Bernard ( J.B.) and Edith Parker in Clawson, Michigan. He was the only one of his siblings that was not born in either Wexford or Missaukee County. He attended Lake City schools until he was drafted out of high school to serve in World War II.
Norm joined the US Navy and attended Great Lakes Naval Base for his basic training. There he was a member of the Navy Rowing Team. Norm was a gunner on Liberty ships carrying supplies to ships and troops fighting in Europe and in the Pacific. He was stationed in Bremerton, Washington, nearly finished with his tour of duty when he received a message from home that a baby brother was born and he was needed at home. Norm left Washington and took the train back to Michigan to be with his family and his new baby brother, Patrick.
After the war Norm attended Central Michigan College of Education (Central Michigan University) in hope of becoming a physical education teacher. After two years of college he left school to drive a truck in Detroit for the summer to make some extra money. At one time he had the largest transportation company in Michigan.
Norm’s passion was baseball and enjoyed both playing it and watching his beloved Tigers on TV, also during spring training in Lakeland, FL, and an occasional game at Tiger Stadium. He also enjoyed March Madness and all of college basketball. He enjoyed golfing with his wife and bowling in his younger years. Norm and his wife, Charlie, spent their winters in Tampa, FL, and golfed down there as much as possible. In his younger years he went to as many dances as he could find in his area.
Norm’s greatest joy, however, was spending time with his family, whether playing Alligator Rummy of just socializing with them. He enjoyed his time with his grandchildren and was a positive force in their lives. As the great grandchildren came along, he enjoyed watching them grow and showing them a few of his passions.
Norman is survived by his wife of 36 years, Charlene (Charlie); his daughter, Patricia (Patti) Parker-Forbes (Scott) of Lake City; grandchildren, Michael Forbes (Jennifer) of Farmington Hills; Sean Forbes (Joanne) of Royal Oak; and Jeffrey Forbes (Dianna) of Newport; great grandchildren, Dylan, Quinn, and Rory Forbes; and a step-son, Richard Frembes (Sandra) of Farmington Hills; brothers John (Ben) Parker, Lynn Parker, Patrick Parker (Carol), and sister Vonceille (Edythe) Parker; and scores of nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents John B and Edith Parker; sister Glennice Parker Harris; brothers Rodney Parker and Theron Parker.
There will be a Celebration of Norman’s life at a later date.
In lieu of flowers donations may be directed to the Missaukee County Humane Society or Hospice of Michigan.
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