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Life Story / Obituary
When reflecting on the life of Maxine Tabbia, it is easy to see her love for her family shine through in everything she did. She lived to nurture and care for her family, and the moments she spent with them were the moments she savored most. Mackie was a longtime resident of the community she loved, and with her warm and outgoing personality she touched the lives of so many others. She lived a life of faith, and her strength throughout the storms of life was truly an inspiration. Life will never be the same without Mackie here, but she leaves behind a timeless legacy that her loved ones will proudly carry on in her footsteps.
It seems only fitting that Maxine was born during a time that was as vibrant as she was. It was the Roaring Twenties when things like jazz music and ballroom dancing colored the cultural fabric of America. Cars were mass produced on assembly lines throughout the nation, and motion pictures became available in both color and sound. Amidst this eventful time was a time of great celebration in the lives of Otis and Eva Earl as they were blessed with the birth of the baby girl they named Maxine on April 28, 1925. She was one of three girls as she was raised in the family home alongside her sisters, Betty and Wanda. Mackie’s earliest years were spent living on the North side of Plainwell, but their family later moved to Comstock. She attended local schools, first through Plainwell Community Schools, but she graduated from Comstock in 1974 along with her son, David.
Not to be forgotten during her younger years was Mackie’s introduction to the young man of her dreams. His name was Arthur Standish, and they grew up together as she was best friends with his sister. It has been said that Arthur followed Mackie all over the place. Their love grew over time, and with a desire to spend the rest of their lives together they were married in 1942 when she was just 17. The following year, Richard “Dick” was born while Arthur was still serving in the Army. Three years later came Terry. David and Brian later followed, making it 23 years between their oldest and their youngest. In 1969, Mackie was deeply saddened with Arthur’s death. Later on, she married Charles Tabbia.
There was never anything Mackie loved more than being with her loved ones. She was an excellent cook who loved cooking for her family. Among Mackie’s specialties were her spaghetti and her bologna soup with dumplings. As someone who enjoyed playing cards, she looked forward to lively games of euchre with her family.
Throughout her life Mackie was someone who liked being busy and had many interests. She spent several years working outside of the home including at a paper mill to earn some extra money for her family when Richard and Terry were younger. Mackie later worked as a cook for Comstock Schools until retiring in 1985. When she was younger she liked golfing and bowling, and it never mattered whether she was good at it. The only thing that ever mattered to Mackie was that she had fun. For years she was a member of a church in Parchment, which Arthur helped build. Mackie made several lifelong friends at that church. She later attended Lighthouse Community Church in Kalamazoo where she was always in charge of the cooking and preparing meals, Mackie was even involved with the banquets and larger events held there. She was very religious, and her faith was always very important to Mackie. She was a dog lover whether her own dogs or those belonging to others. Mackie was also a music lover who especially enjoyed hymns and music from Josh Groban. She never missed watching Guiding Light and the Young and the Restless, and she also read four to five books a week. As her family and friends can attest, Mackie loved her hot fudge sundaes, which made Plainwell Ice Cream one of her favorite places. In addition, Mackie liked crocheting and knitting as well as dancing during her younger years. She loved playing puzzles and was known to stay up all night just to finish.
With a life that spanned times of war and times of peace, times of plenty and time of want, Maxine “Mackie” Tabbia was truly beautiful on the inside and out. She could be a bit strong willed at times, yet she was also one of the most caring people around. Often referred to as the “sweetest little lady” by others, Mackie touched the lives of others in such a special way. Deeply loved, she will be forever missed.
Maxine “Mackie” Tabbia of Kalamazoo, MI passed away August 3, 2018. Maxine is survived by her sons: David (Sandy) Standish, Brian Standish; and several grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Maxine is preceded in death by her parents; first husband: Arthur Standish; second husband: Charles Tabbia; sons: Richard Standish, Terry Standish; and her loving sisters: Betty and Wanda.
Maxine was a very caring, strong willed woman with an endless love for her family. She will forever be remembered and deeply missed by all who knew her.
The family will receive friends on Thursday, August 9th at 10:00 a.m. with a service following at 11:00 a.m. at the Lighthouse Community Church, 4321 S. 11th St. Kalamazoo, MI 49009 (269-353-7021). Please visit Maxine’s web page at www.mccowensecord.com where you can archive a photo, sign the guestbook, and share a memory. Those who wish may make a contribution to the American Heart Association.
The family is being assisted by the McCowen & Secord Family Funeral Home, Marshall-Gren Chapel 120 S. Woodhams St. Plainwell, MI 49080 (269-685-5881).