Traverse City Record-Eagle

February 21, 2013

Community remembers Kingsley father, daughter


---- — KINGSLEY — Growing up, David Pipoly was the "fun brother" to his three sisters.

The siblings would spend hours upon hours in their basement, playing games they made up. At the end of the day, Pipoly wouldn't go to sleep without first telling his sisters he loved them and giving them a kiss.

At age 52, Pipoly hadn't changed much. He left a note for his daughters almost every morning. His advice after an unfavorable year at the 4-H fair was to put any worries "in a bubble and blow it away."

His daughter, Christa, 13, was "a chip off the old block."

"She was just like him. Very vibrant, outgoing," said Pipoly's sister, Dianne Bowers.

Pipoly and Christa died Sunday after a crash with a Grand Traverse County Road Commission plow truck at the Sparling and Summit City roads intersection. Family and friends remembered the father and daughter at a funeral service Thursday at Kingsley High School. Many in attendance wore yellow clothing, scarves or ribbons to honor Christa's favorite color.

Christa, a charismatic Kingsley Middle School eighth grader, was regarded as a model student and athlete. She earned all As, played percussion in the band and kept busy with basketball, softball and track. She scored nearly half the team's points in a recent basketball game.

Pipoly made it to every one of Christa's games with a bag of candy, family said. He wouldn't just sit in the bleachers.

"He had to go and talk to everybody, always," said his sister, Beth Zuiderveen.

He was in his realm when he coached softball. Christa was a pitcher and his other daughter, Noelle, was his catcher.

Pipoly married his wife, Cheryl, in 1991.

Christa was affectionate like her dad. She was a perfectionist, yet easy going. The teenager, who would have turned 14 in one week, always had to be doing something.

Pipoly's mother, Mary, smiled as she folded her son's do-rag in her hands after the service. She laughed that it was likely "all sweated up." He often wore it when tinkering around the house and working on carpentry projects.

Pipoly's Gordon Food Service truck sat outside the high school Thursday. He saw his 20-year employment at GFS as more than a delivery job. It was about knowing his clients and asking how they were doing.

"He didn't just do it," Bowers said. "He took time with everybody. He went out of his way. He extended himself, that positive nature he had."