Calvin Pomarius

October 31, 1924 - June 1, 2016
Grand Rapids, MI



Sunday, June 5, 2016
3:00 PM to 6:00 PM EDT
Heritage Life Story Funeral Homes
Van Strien Chapel
1833 Plainfield Ave., N.E
Grand Rapids, MI 49505
(616) 361-2613
Driving Directions


Monday, June 6, 2016
2:00 PM EDT
Berean Baptist Church
1574 Coit Ave NE
Grand Rapids, MI 49505
(616) 363-9824
Web Site


At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.

Berean Baptist Church, Missions Fund
1574 Coit Ave NE
Grand Rapids, MI 49505
Web Site


Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.

Ball Park Floral
8 Valley Ave.
Grand Rapids, MI 49504
(616) 459-3409
Driving Directions
Web Site

Life Story / Obituary


With a life that spanned times of war and times of peace, times of plenty and times of want, Calvin Pomarius lived a life of purpose while holding his loved ones near. He was never one to worry about the things of this world, rather, his focus was on being the hands and feet of the Lord he loved. Second only to his faith was his family, and nothing made Calvin more proud than witnessing his family tree blossom to include numerous branches of loved ones he adored. Known for being easy going and outgoing as well, he was the sort of man whom everyone seemed to know. Although he will be deeply missed, Calvin leaves behind a priceless collection of memories that his loved ones will forever treasure.

The 1920s were an exciting time to be an American. Innovation was taking us places we had never been with several technological advancements changing the way we lived our everyday lives. Radios, washing machines, and motion pictures in both color and sound were among some of them, and things were very exciting in the world of flight thanks to the fearless spirits of Amelia Earhart and Charles Lindbergh. Amidst this eventful time was the year 1924 that was met with great anticipation for Charles and Helen (Ruhf) Pomarius as they were eagerly awaiting the birth of their new baby as October dawned in Comstock Park, Michigan. The big day finally arrived on Halloween, October 31st, when the baby boy they named Calvin Oscar. drew his first breath. He was the sixth of eight children in the Pomarius clan as he was raised in the family home on 6256 Vinton Avenue alongside his four brothers, Charles, Laurence, Warren, and Don, and his three sisters, Dorothy, Helen, and Marian. Cal was the last surviving of the eight children.

In many ways Cal was a typical young boy. His parents were both of German descent, and his father worked as a painter and also owned a billiard parlor on Bridge Street while his mother was a busy homemaker. Of his upbringing Cal would always say, “We were very poor, and then the Depression came along!” He enjoyed things like swimming in Mill Creek, playing football, and drama. Faith was a cornerstone in Cal’s life, and along with his family he was a member of Alpine Baptist Church. For his education he attended a two-room schoolhouse, Colton Elementary, in Comstock Park and then went on to Comstock Park High School. Just seven days after graduating in 1943, Cal enlisted in the United States Navy and went on to serve for three and a half years during the days of WWII. From there he attended Central Michigan University from 1946 through 1948 and then Michigan State College, before the school was even a university, from 1948 through 1950 receiving his Bachelor of Science degree.

New and exciting changes were in store for Cal when he met the young woman who would change the course of his life forever. Her name was Virginia Christiansen, and they met at Alpine Baptist Church prior to his military service. Once he returned from the military and completed his schooling, the sweethearts were finally united in marriage on September 1, 1950, at Berean Baptist Church in Grand Rapids. Together they welcomed two daughters, Karol and Linda, into their hearts and home. Both Cal and Virginia were very involved in the lives of their children, and they raised their daughters in a loving and nurturing home. They were very committed to the things their girls were doing such as taking them to piano lessons for six years. Some of their best memories as a family were made on various trips to Florida, up to the Upper Peninsula, and to Mackinac Island. For years Cal treasured the companionship of their beagle, Tippy.

Throughout his life Cal was a busy man. He was very involved with Berean Baptist over 60 years as he served as a deacon, usher, Boys Brigade, volunteered with AWANA, and was a Sunday school class officer. Cal was also involved with the Literary Council of West Michigan. During his retirement years, Cal traveled extensively as he went to Europe, Arizona, Mexico, and Hawaii, and he also went on a mission trip to Peru with a church group where they worked on an orphanage.

When reflecting on the life of Calvin Pomarius, words such as warm, genuine, and kindhearted come to mind. He had a great sense of humor and a fun-loving spirit that drew others near with ease. Cal was thrilled to be a grandfather to five amazing grandchildren, and his family was his greatest source of pride and joy. Dearly loved, he will never be forgotten.

Pomarius, Calvin O. Age 91, passed away on June 1, 2016 with his family by his side. Cal was born October 31, 1924, on Halloween, the 6th of 8 children to Charles and Helen (Ruhf) Pomarius. He is a 1943 graduate of Comstock Park High School. Cal enlisted in the United States Navy seven days after graduation and served 3 1/2 years during WWII. He attended CMU for 2 years and later earned his Bachelor of Science from MSU. Cal was married for 61 years to Virginia Christiansen, who passed away in 2012. Besides his wife and his parents, he was preceded in death by his siblings, Charles Pomarius, Dorothy Pomarius, Laurence Pomarius, Warren Pomarius, Don Pomarius, Helen Wisneski, and Marian Bodell. Cal is survived by his daughter, Karol Magistrelli of Grand Rapids and her daughters Rachel Magistrelli and Rebekah Magistrelli; daughter, Linda (Walter) Slaktoski of Sparta and their children, Amber (John) Saur, Jonathan Slaktoski, and Alexa Slaktoski. Also surviving are his brothers-in-law, Norm Wisneski of Grand Rapids and Gene Bodell of Comstock Park; sister-in-law, Lanora Christiansen of Comstock Park; and many nieces, nephews and cousins. A special thank you to the staff at Vista Springs Northview for their loving care of Cal. Friends may visit with Cal's family on Sunday, June 5th, from 3-6 PM at Van Strien-Creston Chapel, 1833 Plainfield Ave NE. A funeral service will be held Monday, June 6th, at 2:00 PM at Berean Baptist Church, 1574 Coit Ave NE. A private family burial will take place at Pine Grove Cemetery. Memorials may be made to the Berean Baptist Church Mission Fund. Please visit Cal's personal web page to learn more about his life story and to leave your own memory at www.lifestorynet.com.