Cover photo for Earl W. Witzel's Obituary
Earl W. Witzel Profile Photo
1932 Earl 2016

Earl W. Witzel

December 28, 1932 — December 24, 2016

Earl W. Witzel, 83, of Berrien Springs, died Saturday, December 24, 2016, at Lakeland Medical Center in St. Joseph.

A memorial service will be at 5 p.m. Monday, January 2, 2017, at the Village Seventh-day Adventist Church in Berrien Springs, with Pastors Ron Kelly and Bruce Hayward officiating.  Memorial donations may be made to Your Story Hour; or Radio 74, 1209 W. Robert Avenue, Ridgecrest, CA 93555.  Allred Funeral Home is entrusted with arrangements, and online messages for the family may be left at www.allredfuneralhome.com.

Earl was born December 28, 1932, in La Valle, Wisconsin, the son of Albert Earl and Alma Mae (Costerisan) Witzel.  He graduated in 1952 from Mt. Ellis Academy in Bozeman, Montana, where he first met his future wife, Merna.  He served with the United States Army from 1956-1958, and while stationed in Anchorage, Alaska, he and Merna L. Yeatts were married on May 20, 1957. 

He graduated from La Sierra College, Riverside, California, in 1964; in September, he and Merna left to serve as missionaries in Brazil.  They served for 21 years, with Earl teaching dairy and farming of all fruits and vegetables, as well as doing maintenance and carpentry for the school.

In 1985 they returned to La Sierra College where Earl served for nine months before moving to Wisconsin Academy.  In May of 1991, the Witzels moved to Berrien Springs where Earl worked at the Andrews University dairy until 1999, and part-time after that.  Ever since he retired, he made maple syrup in his backyard. 

Earl served as a deacon at the Village SDA Church, and he was in charge of making keys and he helped with maintenance.  He was known for always saying, “Keep Smiling!”

He is survived by his wife, Merna; son, Keith (Vera) Witzel of Brazil; daughters, Kitty Witzel and Kim (Marcel) Pichot all of Berrien Springs; five grandchildren; five brothers: Everet (JoAn) Witzel of Ridgecrest, California; Eugene (Irene) Witzel of Middleton, California; Duayne (Ronna) Witzel of Lincoln, California; Harold (Cheryl) Witzel of Ukiah, California; Allen (Patsy) Witzel of Edgewood Valley, California; and one sister, Alberta (Emery) Sekete of Apopka, Florida.

He was preceded in death by his parents and a brother, Fred.

Memorial Service:
Village Seventh-day Adventist Church
635 St. Joseph Avenue, Berrien Springs, MI 49103

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