Traverse City Record-Eagle

December 28, 2012

Nancy L. Starkey


NORTHPORT — Nancy Lee Starkey, 72, left this earth peacefully to be with her Lord on Christmas Eve, Monday, Dec. 24, 2012, surrounded by her loving family.

Nancy was born April 7, 1940, in Pontiac, the daughter of Ezra and Vivian (Hubbard) Hodge. At an early age she was adopted by her stepfather, Sonny Rogers, when her mother remarried.

She was raised in Northport and attended school there, being a part of the Class of 1958.

Nancy loved Northport, the community, its people and most especially its beauty! She touched a multitude of lives with her compassionate and caring manner and leaves an empty place in all of our hearts.

On Feb. 7, 1957, she married Marlin R. Starkey, and they had five children. Nancy led a very full life, and she was very involved in her children's and grandchildren's lives. She loved following all the athletic events they participated in and, on occasion, became a participant herself!

Nancy and Marlin moved to Marquette in the mid-1960s and raised their children there, acclimating to the "yooper" lifestyle of pasties, hockey and huge snowfall accumulations.

She worked as a receptionist/secretary in her early to mid-adult years at various places and realizing the importance of education, she returned and graduated in 1972 from Marquette Senior High School.

As her children grew and started having children of their own, she moved back to the Northport area that she loved so much and lived in the Grand Traverse area up until her passing.

To say Nancy loved water and the beauty of the lakes is an understatement. An avid swimmer she felt a part of the water and no matter where she moved away to Nancy always returned to the precious beauty of the Grand Traverse and Leelanau areas.

Nancy gave her life to the Lord a number of years ago and believed that when she died she was going to spend eternity in heaven and wanted all of her family to know that same feeling of security. She did not hesitate to make her feelings known to all if she thought you needed to hear it. Nancy attended Northport Covenant Church as well as the Wesleyan Church in Traverse City. She had little to give financially but what she had she gave lovingly.

Nancy is survived by her five children, Robin (Randy) Merchant, Rhonda (Neil) Obus, Marlin (Kathleen) Starkey, Ross Starkey and Becky (Rick) Kevwitch; a sister, Connie (Robert) Podleski; two brothers, Michael (Sylvia) Rogers and Patrick Rogers; 17 grandchildren; 13 great-grandchildren; as well as numerous cousins, nieces and nephews. Nancy also left behind one very special feline companion whom she loved and adored, Fritz Starkey.

She was preceded in death by her parents and a grandson, Jacob Ross Starkey.

Visitation will be held today, Dec. 28, from 4 to 8 p.m., at the Martinson Funeral Home of Suttons Bay. The funeral service will be held on Saturday, Dec. 29, at 1 p.m., also at the funeral home. The Rev. Chris Hinterman will officiate. Burial will be in the spring in Leelanau Township Cemetery.

Memorials may be directed to Cherryland Humane Society, 1750 Alhberg Road, Traverse City, MI 49684.

If there were only three words her family had to use to describe Nancy, they would be, "She was loved."

Please share thoughts and memories with Nancy's family on their online guestbook at

Arrangements are with the Martinson Funeral Home of Suttons Bay.