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Life Story / Obituary
With a journey that spanned times of war and times of peace, times of plenty and times of want, Marcella Erskine lived a life of purpose while holding her loved ones near. She was strong-willed and incredibly independent with the ability to give everything her all. Bid was a loving wife and mother, but she just might have argued that nothing was better than becoming a grandmother, great-grandmother, and great-great-grandmother later in life. A longtime resident of the community she loved, she was known and loved by many. Cherished by many, Bid will be forever missed.
Life during the decade that we commonly recall as the Roaring Twenties was certainly exciting. Cars were widely mass produced on assembly lines, which made them more affordable for the average American family, and with the adventurous spirits of Charles Lindbergh and Amelia Earhart the world of flight was soaring to new heights. Jazz music, ballroom dancing, and motion pictures in both color and sound were among the threads that colored the cultural fabric of our nation during this time. Amidst this eventful time was a time of great anticipation in the lives of James and Neta (Smith) Mears as they were eagerly awaiting the birth of their new baby as the world welcomed a new year in 1926. Their wait was over on January 11th when the baby girl they named Marcella C. drew her first breath in Schoolcraft, Michigan. The fifth of nine children, she was preceded in death by all of her siblings, except for her sister who was very special to her, Bertha “Midge.” Usually known as Bid, Marcella was a typical young girl of her generation. Her parents were hard working farmers, instilling within Bid a strong work ethic that would remain with her for the rest of her life. She attended Leonidas Schools through the eighth grade, which was fairly typical for the young of that generation.
Not to be forgotten during Bid’s years as a young woman was her introduction to the man of her dreams. His name was Ernest Erskine, and he used to work on their family farm. They began dating, and it didn’t take the couple long to fall in love. With the desire to spend the rest of their lives together Bid and Ernest were married in 1942 when she was just a young girl of 16. Together they welcomed five children including Virginia, James, Judy, John, and JoAnn into their hearts and home. Bid was deeply devoted to her children, and while they were at home she focused her time and attention on caring for them and their home as well as worked cleaning houses, wallpapering and painting. Bid was a fantastic cook and everything she made was amazing and loved by all of her family.
As her family and friends can attest, Bid made it seem easy to fulfill many different roles at once. Her strong work ethic throughout her life made the things she did seem effortless. Bid didn’t shy away from just doing what needed to be done as she would help cut wood even though it meant that she got poison ivy almost every year because of it. Bid worked throughout her life being a wife, mother and grandmother doing a variety of things including working at nursing homes taking care of people and cooking at restaurants including Arlene’s Truck Stop and Marjo’s Restaurant. Bid enjoyed her grandchildren and watching them grow up and spoiling them. Bid also enjoyed just riding around the country and also loved playing cards. She collected both shot glasses and refrigerator magnets.
With unending love for her family and friends, Marcella Erskine was truly beautiful on the inside and out. Some would say she was witty, and her sense of humor made her so much fun to be around. Bid treasured her family, and she was happiest when surrounded by their love. Life will never be the same without her here, but she leaves behind a priceless collection of memories that her loved ones will forever hold near and dear to their hearts.
Marcella “Bid” C. Erskine of Schoolcraft passed away on Tuesday January 1, 2019. Marcella is survived by Virginia Schuring, of Muir; James (Bonnie) Erskine, of Scotts; Judy (Don) Hatfield, of OH; John Erskine, of KY; 12 grandchildren; and nine great grandchildren and three great great grandchildren; sister, Bertha May “Midge” (AL) Engelman, of Portage; and numerous nieces and nephews. Bid was preceded in death by her husband, Ernest; one daughter, JoAnne Erskine; grandson, Greg Schuring; and great granddaughter, Stephanie Hirdning.
Visitation will be Monday, January 7, 2019, 4-7 p.m. and Services will be Tuesday, January 8, 2019, 11 a.m. at McCowen & Secord Life Story Family Funeral Homes, Rupert – Durham Chapel, 409 S. Main St., Vicksburg, MI 49097 (269-649-1697). Please visit Bid’s memory page at www.mccowensecord.com to sign the guest book and share a memory. Those who wish may make contributions to the Hospice Care of Southwest Michigan.