Doris.V. Decker

March 2, 1942 - June 20, 2016
Traverse City, MI


Life Story / Obituary


Doris V. Decker, age 92, of Traverse City, passed away Monday, June 20, 2016 at French Manor. Doris was born on Feb. 17, 1924, the daughter of the late Alvie and Edith (Kern) Miller in Lorain, Ohio.

On March 2, 1942 Doris married Robert Charles Decker. Together they raised nine children, six boys and three girls. Robert and Doris lived in Lorain until 1955 when they moved their family to Traverse City.

With her love of music and ability to sing, Doris was a member of the choir in high school. She loved to dance and enjoyed listening to all kinds of music, especially the Big Band era, and looked forward to the Lawrence Welk Show.

She was known as "Grandma" by the students of Willow Hill Elementary, where she worked as a lunch aide and playground attendant.

Doris played volleyball for 30 years, until the age of 70, at Willow Hill School. She took tennis lessons at age 71 and played for five years. She then became very active in bowling and playing pool until the age of 90, even winning a senior pool tournament. Doris was a woman of "true grit," returning to bowling only three months after hip replacement surgery at the age of 86. Doris loved to dance, especially the macarena at weddings, and took up line dancing.

She never drove and was known for riding her bike all over Traverse City, stopping at garage sales looking for bargains. When she wasn't able to ride her bike somewhere she would gladly take the BATA bus. Doris was a very independent person who had a great sense of pride and didn't want to depend on others, including her children.

She was an avid Tiger baseball fan and had the opportunity to attend two live games in Detroit. Doris kept herself busy with jigsaw puzzles, needlework, cross stitch, crocheting and working on crossword puzzles. She also played many different games with her children and grandchildren.

Doris was formerly a member of the Asbury United Methodist Church in Traverse City.

She loved flowers as you could see driving by her house every spring, summer and fall. She also loved to feed the birds, and did so for many years, but did not take to those "pesky" squirrels.

Doris is survived by her children, Thomas (Lori) Decker, of Traverse City, Patty Ropp, of Traverse City, Lynne (Al) Eilers, of Dewitt, Charlie (Holly) Decker, of McBain, Jeffrey Decker, of Traverse City, Debra (John) Ockert, of Kingsley, Scott (Cindy) Decker, of Northwood, New Hampshire, and Tod (Colette) Decker, of Williamsburg; 20 grandchildren; 30 great-grandchildren; two great-great grandchildren; daughter-in-law, Linda Decker, of Traverse City; one niece; and several nephews.

Doris was preceded in death by her husband, Robert Decker; son, Bobby Decker; granddaughter, Lisa Johnson; two sisters; and one brother.

Cremation has taken place. As per her request, a private family memorial is being held.

Memorial contributions may be made in her honor to the Salvation Army or the Grand Traverse Area Veterans Coalition.

Please visit to sign the guestbook and share thoughts and memories with the family.

The family chose Life Story Funeral Home of Traverse City.