Harry Edward Tibbitts, 85, of Allegan passed away Wednesday, November 6, 2019 at Briarwood Assisted Living. Born July 7, 1934 in Chicago, IL, he was the son of the late Frank L. and Lorraine A. (Carlson) Tibbitts. In 1941 the family moved to Hartford, MI and Harry graduated from Hartford High School in 1952. On January 8, 1955 he married Joan Marie Modl from Dowagiac. Later that same year he bought the Tastee Freez store in White Pigeon, MI. Harry served his country honorably in the United States Army from 1956 to 1958. After his time in the service, he began working as a manager trainee and, eventually, became Branch Manager for Local Finance Corporation. It was during this time that he and Joan welcomed their two children, Cindy and Steven. Throughout the late 1960's and early 1970's Harry began the purchase and expansion of his insurance and real estate businesses. He owned and operated Rumery Insurance Agency for twenty-three years and Tibbitts-Stech and Associates Realty, Incorporated (formerly H.E. Tibbitts Real Estate Corporation) for thirty-one years prior to retiring. Within that same time period, Harry also had served as the President of the Allegan Jaycees, became a member of the Kalamazoo Board of Realtors and worked on the development of the Highbanks Condo Association. He had also worked with others and the Department of Housing and Urban Development to build the Grand Ravine Senior Housing complex. Harry was dedicated to serving his community and was a member of the Board of Directors for various organizations, including Allegan General Hospital, Allegan Area Chamber of Commerce, Allegan Area United Way, Cancer Fund, Ot-Well-Egan Country Club, the Allegan Jaycees and Allegan Rotary Club. He and Joan were longtime, dedicated members of Allegan United Methodist Church. In addition to his wife, Joan, of 64 years, Harry is survived by his children, Cindy Tibbitts (Steve DeLavern) and Steven (Jana) Tibbitts; grandchildren, Julie (Chase) Christman and Nathan (Jayd) Tibbitts; great-grandson, Cayd Tibbitts; sister-in-law, Ruth Modl; and many nieces and nephews. Along with his parents, Frank and Lorraine, he was preceded in death by his parents-in-law, Frank and Velma Modl; brothers, Bud "Ken" Tibbitts, Frank Tibbitts, Jr., Bob Tibbitts and Ron Tibbitts; sister, Lorraine Tibbitts; brother-in-law, Roger Modl; and several nieces and nephews. The family will receive friends at Allegan United Methodist Church, on Saturday, November 9, 2019 from 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM at which time a memorial service will begin. Memorial donations may be made to Wings of Hope Hospice, 530 Linn Street, Allegan, MI 49010; or Allegan United Methodist Church Hands of Grace Food Pantry, 409 Trowbridge Street, Allegan, MI 49010.
Published in Kalamazoo Gazette on Nov. 7, 2