Clyde S. VanEnkevort, 92, of Gladstone and former resident of Bark River, passed away on Saturday evening, February 20, 2016 at Pinecrest Medical Care Facility in Powers with his family by his side.
He was born on December 23, 1923 in DePere, WI, son of Henry and Edith (Durouine) VanEnkevort. Clyde attended St. Joseph Grade School and graduated from Escanaba High School in 1942.
Clyde joined the Army Air Force in 1942 and was honorably discharged in February of 1946. He served during World War II and was honored with a Victory Medal, American Theatre Ribbon, Asiatic Pacific Theatre Ribbon and two Overseas Service Bars and Good Conduct Medal.
Clyde married Joyce L. DeGrave on February 12, 1955 at St. George Church in Bark River. She preceded him in death on November 6, 1999. On September 10, 2005, he married Theresa A. Seymour at All Saints Church in Gladstone.
He farmed in Bark River for six months after his military service, then started a block plant on the farm. He bought land from the State Highway Department and continued the block plant along with his two brothers, Gerald and Donald. Clyde entered the marine industry in the late 60’s. He was truly a pioneer, inventor and mentor in the maritime business with one of his biggest accomplishments being building of the tug Joyce L. VanEnkevort and the barge the Great Lakes Trader. Clyde retired from the business at the age of 85 but always enjoyed keeping track of the “The Joyce VanEnkevort” Tug and Barge.
Clyde enjoyed watching football and FOX news. He was a member of the Bark River Rheaume-Knauf American Legion Post 438 and the Elks Lodge 354.
Among survivors include his wife, Theresa of Gladstone; daughters, Jill (Mike) McDermott of Bark River, Jenny (Bruce) Messersmith of Bark River and Diane Hanson of Flat Rock; sons, Dirk (Laura) of Erie, Penn., John (Robin) of Bark River, Steven of Bark River, and Jeff (Kathy) of Charlotte, MI; two step children, Joseph (Lynn Jandron) DeCarie of Ishpeming and Susan (Kevin) Headley of Fairbury, IL; several grandchildren, great grandchildren, and one step granddaughter; sister, Rita (Keith) Bender of Hoschton, Ga; and many nieces, nephews and cousins.
In addition to his parents and his first wife, Joyce; he was preceded in death by his sister, Bernadette Staeven and brothers, Donald and Gerald VanEnkevort.
Visitation will be on Friday, February 26th from 2 to 7 p.m. at the Crawford Funeral Chapel in Bark River. Bark River Legion will have military rites at 5:00 p.m. Parish prayers will be at 5:30 p.m. Visitation will also continue on Saturday from 9 to 10:45 a.m. at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church with the Mass of Christian Burial to follow at 11 a.m. with Rev. Darryl Pepin officiating. A meal will follow in the church hall.
Burial will be in the Bark River Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Clyde S. VanEnkevort Scholarship Fund at Bark River Harris School which will be used by Bark River-Harris High School.
The Crawford Funeral Homes are assisting the VanEnkevort family.