Life Story Funeral Homes®
The exclusive providers of the Life Story Experience


Life Story Funeral Homes®
The exclusive providers of the Life Story Experience

Deborah Blackmer

May 22, 2024
Vicksburg, MI




Deborah Kay Blackmer age 73, passed away peacefully at Kairos Dwelling in Kalamazoo on May 22, 2024. She was born March 25, 1951, to Ansel and Coeta (Roth) Doolittle in Clovis, New Mexico. Deborah graduated with Honors from Albuquerque High School in 1968. She attended classes at Texas Tech University, Lubbock Christian College, and South Plains College all in Lubbock, Texas. She was currently studying Theology in Nation to Nation University to complement her strong religious background. While working as a Secretary in the Personnel Department at Washington State University, she met the love of her life, Gary L. Blackmer, and they were married on September 22, 1969. Shortly after their marriage, they moved to Los Angeles, California where they lived for two years before moving to Lubbock, Texas where they lived for ten years before finally moving to her husband's home State of Michigan. Deborah soon became employed in The Upjohn Pharmaceutical Company and eventually became an Executive Secretary in the Public Affairs Division.

Deborah was a devout Christian, and she was an inspiration to those who knew her. She exhibited her faith every day, and she always put the wants and needs of others far ahead of her own. Deborah was a devoted wife, mother, and grandmother. Beyond her inspiring spirit, she was a gifted and talented individual. She and Gary were accomplished dancers, and together they won first place in world competition twice in Cha Cha, and they won second place overall in world competition twice in two different divisions. They also taught country-western dance for 13 years. Deborah was a talented seamstress. She loved sewing, and she designed and produced all of their dance costumes. In addition, Deborah demonstrated her artistic talents through her several colorful and unique paintings, and one of her greatest passions was growing dahlias. Among her many close friends, she was known as the 'Dahlia Lady.' Through the years, she grew more than a hundred different varieties of dahlias, and she loved to freely distribute these gorgeous flowers to her friends. Above all, Deborah's family was the center of her universe, her reason for living.

Deborah will be deeply missed by her husband Gary, by her two sons Bradley (Melissa) Blackmer and Brian (Joan) Blackmer, and by her four grandsons, Kyle, Ryan, Connor, and Austin Blackmer, and by her sister Kimberly Doolittle and cousins Randy and Terry Doolittle. Deborah was preceded in death by her father Ansel Doolittle, her mother Coeta Gott and stepfather John Gott.

A Memorial Service will be held on Wednesday, July 17, 2024, at 11:00 AM in the Firm Foundation Ministries Church located at 651 East Main Street in Centreville, Michigan 49032. A committal ceremony will also occur at the Ravenna Cemetery in Ravenna, Michigan at 11:AM on Thursday, July 18, 2024. In lieu of sending flowers to the Blackmer family, please consider a memorial contribution to the Kairos Dwelling on 2945 Gull Road in Kalamazoo, Michigan 49048. The Blackmer family also wishes to express their heart-filled thanks to Compassus Hospice at 5220 Lovers Lane in Portage, Michigan 49002 for their excellent service and support through these troubling times.