Traverse City Record-Eagle
---- — FRANKFORT — Russell Webber of Frankfort passed away peacefully surrounded by his family at Munson Medical Center on April 20, 2013.
Born in the small mining town of Ironwood, Mich. to Thomas and Edith Webber, he spent his early childhood years there. Later his family moved to Muskegon, Mich. where he graduated from High school.
He married Sue Milarch on Nov. 3, 1980 in Las Vegas, Nev. During their 32 years of marriage he would start each day by telling her how beautiful she was.
Russell started his business career as a sales rep for Morton Salt Company and McGuire Coffee Company, but in 1970 he followed his dreams and purchased The Hostess Café in Frankfort, Mich. Many of his employees still talk about how he taught them the value of hard work and treating people fairly. The Hostess Café was where many locals gathered for coffee and a game of cards. Russ later was the food service administrator at the Benzie County Jail from where he retired.
He enjoyed league bowling, golf and reading. However his true passion was his love of baseball; playing as a young man in Muskegon, coaching his son Steve’s little league team and later coaching the women’s softball team, the Hostess Twinkies. He loved Frankfort Panther football and watching his daughter Alli play softball. He had fond memories of music played by his daughters, Janet and Megan.
He was actively involved in the Frankfort Chamber of Commerce during his restaurant years and as a member of the Frankfort Eagles.
Russ was a man of few words but when he spoke you listened, as his words were with great thought and wisdom, advice was freely given, all you had to do was ask. He could often be heard expressing his pride in the many accomplishments of his children, no matter how great or how small.
Russ loved his family and truly enjoyed their times together he will be greatly missed by his loving wife, Sue and his children, Janet (Bill) Sabourin, Steve (Debra) Webber, Megan (Ben) Francis, and Allison Webber; grandchildren, Aaron (Fran) Elliott, Heather Webber, Matthew Webber, and Dylan Francis; great-grandchildren, Daniel Elliott and Alexis Elliott; and Sarah Cruikshank, to whom he was a father figure.
Russell was preceded in death by his parents, three brothers, two sisters, and his grandson Alec Sabourin.
Russ left this life as he lived it in peace and surrounded by his family. He will be deeply missed by his family, friends, and all who knew him.
Funeral service is scheduled for 1 p.m., Wednesday, April 24, 2013 at the Jowett Family Funeral Homes in Benzonia, with a visitation one hour prior to the service. There will also be a visitation from 5 to 8 p.m., Tuesday, April 23, at the funeral home. Arrangements by Jowett Family Funeral Homes & Cremation Service.