CENTRAL LAKE — Maris Spaulding wouldn’t want to see tears.
Maris, a 2012 Central Lake graduate, lost her months-long battle with leukemia on Thursday evening. The community rallied to support her since her March diagnosis, and those who know her said she wouldn’t want people to focus on sad sentiments in the wake of her death.
“Love one another, that would be something she’d want people to do,” said her grandmother, Jan Johnson. “And keep smiling.”
Maris died at DeVos Children’s Hospital in Grand Rapids. Doctors initially thought she’d have a chance at beating the cancer, but it became too aggressive in the end.
“None of us really gave up until Wednesday,” Johnson said. “It was devastating, of course, but we had to deal with it. We just tried to be there with her and tell her that we love her.”
Maris was a girl of strong faith who always brought smiles and laughs to her friends, family and the doctors who cared for her, Johnson said.
“She was a very upbeat kid,” she said. “She always, always had a smile on her face.”
Maris served as president of the student council and was a three-sport athlete. She also was a member of the National Honor Society, an active participant in her church youth group, and editor of the school yearbook, among other activities.
She was inspirational in more ways than one, said her grandfather, Gary Johnson.
“She had a subtle way of getting into your heart,” he said. “She’d affect you without you even knowing it.”
Maris was accomplished in volleyball, basketball and softball, and her competitive spirit would likely dictate what she’d want to tell others in the wake of her death, Gary Johnson said.
“Things are going to get better, they’re going to be OK,” he said. “Keep moving forward. Nothing is going to drag us down.”
Her pastor, Gary Bekkering of First Congregational Church in Central Lake, frequently visited her at DeVos, which became her second home.
He was there when she died, surrounded by friends and family.
“We shared memories, laughter, tears. Bible passage readings. We sang songs. It was an incredible time, and it was a true honor to be there,” said Bekkering. “It was incredibly spiritual, a very moving moment.”
As a pastor, Bekkering said he is supposed to be the one to inspire and strengthen those in need.
“But whenever I walked away, it was she who was inspiring and strengthening me. She is a very, very special young lady. Deep spiritual faith,” he said. “She has this infectious, beautiful smile. She touched many, many hearts: the little kids at Devos, the nurses and doctors. In her short time on this Earth, God blessed us.”
Bekkering said he’ll go to Central Lake High School next week to meet with her peers to prepare a celebration for Maris’ funeral.
The funeral will be held at the high school gym on Dec. 8 from 1 to 2 p.m. A luncheon will follow at The Pelican Room. A visitation is planned for Dec. 7 from 4 to 9 p.m. at the Central Lake Chapel of Mortensen Funeral Homes and again on Dec. 8, from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m.
CENTRAL LAKE — Maris Spaulding wouldn’t want to see tears.
NMC board to address OMA allegations
Northwestern Michigan College trustees on Monday will discuss allegations they violated state open meetings laws. But they might do so behind closed doors.Continued ...
Local officials: Email no way to conduct public business
Local government officials expressed surprise and concern over a newspaper report that Northwestern Michigan College trustees may have violated state law when they used email and other non-public means to deliberate and decide a proposal to videotape their meetings.Continued ...
Mancelona's story similar, unique
This Antrim County community’s story mirrors those of many small towns. Industry boomed. Franchised stores shot up, mom-and-pops struggled to compete. Industry left, commerce sufferedContinued ...
Dems drum up opposition for Leelanau seats
Republicans dominated the Leelanau County ballot for years, but they’ll have some company this year.Continued ...
Betsie River, Crystal Lake to be part of watershed management plan
It’s all about groundwater. So said Ed Hoogterp. He’s the former president of the Crystal Lake and Watershed Association who spearheads work on a watershed management plan for the area that runs east of Interlochen to the Frankfort lighthouse.Continued ...
- Saturday, April 19, 2014
Plane returns to Cherry Capital
A Delta Airlines flight returned to Cherry Capital Airport minutes after takeoff because of a problem with the plane’s landing gear.Continued ...
Theory and neighbors' sentiment collide on rezoning
TRAVERSE CITY -- City commissioners face a choice between following their housing ideology or bowing to residents who call a proposed development of four mid-priced houses both ludicrous and dangerous. Architect John Kerridge proposes to construct foContinued ...
Blair Elementary has new leader
Blair Elementary has new leader TRAVERSE CITY -- Blair Elementary School has a new leader in place for next school year. Traverse City Area Public Schools administrators selected Kirsten Jones-Morgan to replace Sharon Dionne, who will retire July 1.Continued ...
Leelanau Peninsula Chamber to get new website
Leelanau Chamber to get new website TRAVERSE CITY -- It's time for a makeover for the Leelanau Peninsula Chamber of Commerce's website. Leelanau County Commissioners voted to allocate up to $10,000 in 2 percent grant money earmarked for economic devContinued ...
19th century skull returned to Band for ceremony
TRAVERSE CITY -- One Leelanau County family heirloom will no longer be passed down to the next generation. Sheriff Mike Borkovich said a family who did not want to be named gave his office a human skull that had been in the family for years. An elderContinued ...
- Friday, April 18, 2014
Flight returns to Cherry Capital
TRAVERSE CITY — A Delta Airlines flight returned to Cherry Capital Airport minutes after takeoff because of a problem with the plane's landing gear.Continued ...
Attorney files for reorganization
TRAVERSE CITY -- A prominent Traverse City attorney's law practice remains open after he sought bankruptcy protection amid a lengthy and potentially costly legal battle with a former client. Clarence Gomery, of Gomery Law Offices, said his April 2 baContinued ...
Kalkaska fire destroys rentals
TRAVERSE CITY -- Fire tore through an apartment building in the south end of the Village of Kalkaska. Kalkaska County Sheriff David Israel said he didn't think anyone was seriously injured or killed in the Thursday afternoon blaze, but the entire buiContinued ...
Kalkaska County Board Chair to resign
TRAVERSE CITY -- Kalkaska County's longest-serving commissioner will resign at the end of the month. Debra Kimball, who represents Kalkaska Township, but not the village, stepped down from her position as board chair at a meeting Tuesday night. She mContinued ...
Caldwell sentenced in woman's death
TRAVERSE CITY -- A Traverse City man who said he accidentally shot his girlfriend to death in a failed suicide attempt will serve a sentence of about 11.5 to 19 years, the maximum sentence. Robert Lee-Allen Caldwell, 33, plead guilty to involuntary mContinued ...
Acme decision: Lovett or leave it
TRAVERSE CITY -- Lyle Lovett concert posters decorate bulletin boards throughout Traverse City, but that may be as close as the country music artist and actor gets to town, if promoters can't swing a zoning permit. Lovett and His Large Band are schedContinued ...
GT board picks Gourdie-Fraser as engineer firm for county
TRAVERSE CITY -- Grand Traverse County's Board of Public Works selected the local firm that designed and built the county's long-troubled septage treatment plant to serve as its engineer of record for the next three years. Gourdie-Fraser Inc. beat ouContinued ...
Second NMC stabbing suspect pleads guilty
BY SARAH ELMS email@example.com Second NMC stabbing suspect pleads guiltyContinued ...
- Thursday, April 17, 2014
Emails show NMC leaders made decisions outside public meetings
Northwestern Michigan College’s elected officials debated in a flurry of emails whether to televise their monthly board meetings, a behind-the-scenes decision-making process that altered some trustees’ public opposition and occurred outside the public eye.Continued ...
NMC president's email to college staff
Northwestern Michigan College President Tim Nelson sent the following email to college employees Tuesday afternoon:Continued ...
Michigan's Open Meetings Act
State lawmakers created Michigan’s Open Meetings Act to strengthen citizens’ ability to know what goes on in government, according to an OMA guide published by Michigan’s attorney general.Continued ...
Consultant: Architecture great, traffic a problem
Heads shook and shoulders drooped as the group approached one of the last stops on a tour of Eighth Street in Traverse City: the brick and barn-red sheet metal walls of an auto parts warehouse.Continued ...
Division Street residents stuck in sewer limbo
Division Street residents Bill Greene and James Begeman might live in Traverse City’s most unfortunate place for a sewer, as evidenced by a possible repair bill of more than $60,000 to fix their collapsed line.Continued ...
Millage to go on ballot at same rate
Leelanau County commissioners unanimously agreed to put a senior services millage on the August ballot. They approved language for a 4-year renewal at .275 mills.Continued ...
Man faces arson and insurance fraud charges
An Antrim County man faces felony charges of conspiracy to commit arson and insurance fraud after investigators received information that an April 2013 house fire may have been intentionally set.Continued ...
- NMC board to address OMA allegations