On Sunday morning, September 10, 2023, Bob Norcross entered into his heavenly home to be with his Savior at the age of 90. Bob was born in Kalamazoo to Frank and Iva Baxter on May 31, 1933, however, he lost his father at a very young age. His mother married George Arthur Norcross a few years later who adopted Bob and became a wonderful, kind father who loved and guided him through all of his young years and into adulthood.
Bob was a devoted husband, father and grandfather. He loved others deeply and made friends instantly with everyone he met. The most important part of his life was his unwavering faith in Jesus, and he loved sharing his faith with others. He became a charter member of Berean Baptist Church in Portage where he was involved in many different ministries. One of his favorite ministries after retirement was spending summers at Lake Ann Camp where he worked on many building projects. His most challenging project was building a large intricate cross from different types of wood which still hangs in the chapel at Lake Ann Camp. Bob was also active with the Gospel Mission, Curtis Trailer Center, and he often helped family, neighbors and friends with anything and everything that needed to be done. In his later years, Bob's mobility became limited from a neurological disease, and he eventually needed a motorized wheelchair to get around. However, he was optimistic and continued to be positive and a vital part of the StoryPoint community. And of course, Bob's pranks, jokes and stories were legendary.
While at Kalamazoo Central High School, Bob joined the Naval Reserves. After graduation, he went to Great Lakes Naval Training Base, where he studied to be a hospital corpsman. He was later assigned to Camp Pendleton in California during the Korean War conflict. After leaving military service, Bob attended Western Michigan University where he majored in Industrial Management and Automotive Transportation. He retired as the director of Office Management Services from the UpJohn Company where he received the prestigious UpJohn Award in 1990.
He met the love of his life, Peggy, while he was working as an orderly during college and she was a student nurse at Bronson Hospital. After their first date, Bob announced he was going to marry her and despite this statement not going over well with Peggy, they did marry in 1955 and raised three children, Brian, Karen and Sharon. The four grandchildren that came along later completely stole his heart as well as his three great grandchildren. Bob and Peggy enjoyed 66 wonderful years together traveling, camping, and spending time with family. Bob continued his amazing woodworking projects, fishing with his friend, Ken DeVaney and building his elaborate Lionel Train layouts in the basement.
Bob was preceded in death by his beloved wife Peggy in April of 2022. He is survived by his sister, Marilyn Boodt; children, Brian Norcross, Karen (Tim) Norton, and Sharon (Brad) Love; grandchildren, Karissa Hawley, Taryn Love, Tatum Love and Kyle Norton ( fiancé, Jasmine Campbell-Fagan); great grandchildren, Jude, Alice and Crosby Hawley, their father, Brad Hawley and many special nieces and nephews; his special buddy, Karen Gardner, who became an important part of Bob's life and the family during his years at Story Point and all of his many dear friends in the StoryPoint Community.
A memorial service is scheduled for Wednesday, September 20th at 11:30 at Berean Baptist Church, 7813 S 12th St, Portage, MI 49024. A light luncheon will follow.
The family will be forever grateful to the entire staff at StoryPoint and Hospice who took such wonderful care of Bob.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations in Bob's name can be made to Lake Ann Camp or the Gospel Mission.
While at www.amsfuneralhomes.com please take time to sign Bob's guestbook and/or share a memory with his family.
The Norcross family is being cared for by the Avink, McCowen & Secord Funeral Homes and Cremation Society, 5975 Lovers Lane, Portage, MI 49002. 269-344-5600.