At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.
Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital
235 Wealthy St Se
Grand Rapids, MI 49503
Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.
Life Story / Obituary
With a loving, sweet spirit, Pam Chase added much to the lives around her. She was an outgoing and fun-loving woman who shared the friendships of many. Pam lived completely and fully at every opportunity and was the type of woman who enjoyed every minute along the way. Through trials and triumphs, she was an inspiration to those closest to her. For all that she was and more, Pam will be dearly missed.
By 1947, the end of World War II found the baby boom well on its way as families faced a housing shortage. Many young couples beginning families of their own lived with their parents for a time while newly developed suburban neighborhoods were being built. The post war economy boomed as the need for consumer goods rose, and manufacturing jobs were plentiful. Through these changing times, Jay Joseph and Elouise (Scott) McCanless added to the boom with the birth of their little girl, Pamela Ann, born on June 2, 1947.
Born and raised in the riverfront city of Grand Rapids, Michigan, her family lived on the northeast side of the city in the Plainfield and Leonard Street area. Although her parents divorced when Pam and her brother, Arvin "Ray" were quite young, growing up without their father only strengthened their bond as siblings. Times were difficult for their family and Pam was very close to Ray and remained so throughout their lives. In 1958, Pam’s mother met and married Kenneth Schultz who supported their family working in furniture manufacturing while her mother also worked in the same industry sewing upholstery.
Even though vacations other than day trips were pretty much nonexistent during Pam’s youth, she had fond memories of holidays spent with family. It was especially hard on Pam when as a young girl she was diagnosed with polio. She went on to spend a year at Mary Free Bed Hospital, attending the Eastern Orthopedic School in her early years. During her school years, Pam formed a lifelong friendship with Dixie, Jan, and Karen who were never far from each other’s side. Pam graduated from Ottawa Hills High School in 1965.
From her youth into young adulthood, Pam enjoyed a variety of things. Never one to allow the effects of her polio get her down, she enjoyed swimming, being a member of an archery team, going to the movies and bowling. It was through bowling that Pam came to know the unconditional love found in the heart of Edward Chase. It was 1970, and Pam was waiting in her friend’s car when a beautiful yellow, Buick Wildcat Convertible pulled up. Wheelchair bound, Ed wheeled into Chase Lanes, and Pam decided to follow not far behind him on her crutches. Only the beginning of a deep, abiding love, the two met and became good friends.
Pam and Ed were happily married on September 10, 1971 at Eighth Avenue Christian Reformed Church. The newlyweds began their new life together living in a mobile home in Sparta, and remained there until the new home they were building in Rockford was complete. Ed’s brothers did a tremendous amount of work on their home, and never to sit on the sidelines, Ed and Pam were right there every step of the way. Neither Ed nor Pam allowed their handicaps to dictate their lives. They remained very active and involved, participating in bowling, archery, and other sports.
While Pam worked for General Dynamics, Ed was a dental tech before opening up his own dental tech shop in Texas. Even though they never had any children to call their own, Pam and Ed shared memorable times simply enjoying life together. Pam was a good cook and she learned how to make some of the spicier flavors Ed so loved. When going out to eat, they never had a particular favorite although they did enjoy many restaurants in Texas and in Grand Rapids. They also enjoyed their penchant for travel, spending time in Mexico and taking in several cruises. When it came to music, Pam preferred classical and country. She was an avid reader of romance stories and over the years she loved collecting snowmen and birds.
A special bond was created in both Pam and Ed through their handicaps. They lived each day for one another and they loved and cared for each other deeply. When Pam’s beloved Ed died in 2007, Pam never seemed quite the same yet through the love and support of family and friends, she carried on. In her last few years, Pam’s health deteriorated and she began living in an assisted living facility. Deeply missed, Pam will be remembered for her perseverance and joy.
Pamela A. Chase age 69, of Grand Rapids, passed away on Tuesday, January 24, 2017. She was preceded in death by her husband, Edward in 2007; mother, Elouise (Scott) Schultz in 2013; father-in-law, Eddie Chase in 1982; and brother-in-law, Rick Chase in 1991. She is survived by her brother, Arvin (Beth) McCanless; mother–in-law, Betty Chase; brothers-in-law and sisters-in law, Joyce (Mart) DeVries, Bonnie (Todd) Hendricks, Ron Chase, Randy Chase; several nieces, nephews and many friends. A service to celebrate Pam’s life will be held on Monday, January 30th, 2:00 PM at Heritage Life Story Funeral Home – Alt & Shawmut Hills Chapel – 2120 Lake Michigan Dr. NW. Friends and relatives are invited to meet her family at the funeral chapel on Sunday from 6-8 PM. Contributions in her memory may be made to Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital, 235 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49503. Please visit Pam’s personal webpage at www.lifestorynet.com where you may read her life story, sign her guestbook or archive a favorite memory.