Russell Bland

January 9, 1946 - February 1, 2019
Paw Paw, MI

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Vietnam Veterans of America
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Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation
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Life Story / Obituary


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Russell Bland, age 73, of Paw Paw, Michigan died on Friday, February 1, 2019 at Bronson Methodist Hospital in Kalamazoo. He was born on January 9, 1946, the son of Elmer and Ann Marie (Huber) Bland in Hammond, Indiana where he grew up and graduated from Hammond Tech high school in 1964. He faithfully served his country in the US Army for two years. For several years he owned and operated Larry and Rusty’s Michigan Tap in Hammond. For the last 25 years he has lived in the Paw Paw area. Rusty enjoyed collecting Lionel Trains, listening to the likes of Motown and 60’s Soul Music and was a sports car enthusiast. In 1970 he married Sara Lewis and they were married for 16 years until her death in 1986. He was also preceded in death by his Father Elmer in 1992. Surviving members of his family include his Mother Ann Marie Bland, daughter Samantha (Isa) Esquivel, three grandchildren: Jasmine , Noah and Hudson, brother Chris (Nancy) Bland, niece Danielle (Brian) Smith and nephew Brian (Carrie) Bland as well as two great-nieces: Airyal and Maci. Cremation has taken place and there will be a private family memorial. Donations may be made to the Vietnam Veterans of America or the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation. Arrangements by Betzler & Thompson Life Story Funeral Home, 60900 M-40 Hwy; Paw Paw (269) 657-3870