THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
Issue Date: March 7, 2019
Thomas Malke, 92, of Bay City, Mi., passed away Sunday, Jan. 27, 2019 at New Hope Bay Assisted Living.
Born March 6, 1926 in Marinette, to the late Thomas and Ella (Nimergood) Malke, he was raised in Peshtigo and graduated from Peshtigo High School in 1944. He served in the United States Navy during World War II in the Pacific and after an honorable discharge, he moved to Bay City in 1946.
An active member of Trinity Ev. Lutheran Church, he married his first wife, the former Betty Zutter of Oconto on Dec. 11, 1948 and she preceded him in death on Feb. 13, 1973. He then married the former Phyllis Mason on March 31, 1989.
He worked and retired as the Vice President of Midland Contracting Co., was active in the Bay City Lions Club, was in the Operating Engineers Union for 65 years and also in several associations including, Michigan Road Builders, Michigan Truckers and the South End businessmen.
He enjoyed hunting, fishing, traveling and card playing, but especially time with family and friends.
He is survived by his wife, Phyllis; two daughters, Mary Jo (Ralph) Schmidt and Marcie (Gib) Sturm; six grandchildren; five great-grandchildren; four step-children, Carol (Ed) Wirt, Patricia (Jim) Rathje, Cathy (David) Beckemeier and Kenneth (fiancé Sue) Mason; 13 step-grandchildren; 19 step-great-grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.
In addition to his first wife, Betty and his parents, he was preceded in death by an infant son, Michael J. Malke and a sister, Marilyn "Mitzi" Barclay of Peshtigo.
Friends visited with the family at Gephart Funeral Home in Bay City, Mi. on Thursday, Jan. 31 from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. Visitation continued at Trinity Ev. Lutheran Church in Bay City on Friday, Feb. 1 from 10 a.m. until time of the funeral and committal service at 11 a.m. Pastor Richard Starr officiated with private burial in Floral Gardens Cemetery in Bay City. A memorial was established for Trinity Ev. Lutheran Church.