Purgiel, Clarence

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Clarence James Purgiel, age 81, passed away peacefully at his Gaylord home with his family at his side on Sunday, July 30, 2017.

Clarence was born to Albert and Helen (Hincka) Purgiel on September 5, 1935 in Detroit, Michigan.  The Purgiel family moved to Posen, Michigan where his Dad took over the family farm.  Clarence was raised with his 11 siblings working their dairy and potato farm.   He met his wife Katherine (Dolly) Haske from Rogers City where they married on September 17, 1955 and started their family.   A short construction career was followed by 7 years sailing the Great Lakes working for Bradley Transportation.

Clarence and Dolly moved their 6 children to Gaylord in 1965 and completed their family with 2 additional children. Clarence went to work for US Plywood Corporation and worked as Shipping Foreman for many years.  He retired in 1996.

He was very active within St. Mary Cathedral Parish where he was an usher, Eucharistic Minister and bingo chairman for many years.  Clarence was inducted into the Great Lakes Maritime Hall of Fame in 2008. Clarence really enjoyed gardening and polka dancing.  His ultimate joy, however, was spending time with his family (that’s our story and we are sticking to it!).

Clarence is survived by his wife Dolly (Haske)of 61 years and his children Jeff (Diane), Debbie (Paul) Jensen, Dan (Marie), Gary (Lisette), Carla Walter, Andrew, and Tom (Alyson), his grandchildren Sandy(Jay)Maufort, Jim and Nick Purgiel, Jake and Zachary Pasternak, Celeste and Gus Jensen, Bryce Purgiel, Ryan Bliss, Eric, Seth and Lacey Purgiel, Brandon and Charles Walter, Rachel and Andrew Purgiel and one great grandson Trenton Maufort.  He is also survived by 3 sisters and 5 brothers.

He was preceded in death by his parents, a sister, a brother as well as three daughters Helen and Susan Purgiel, and Monica Pasternak.

Clarence passed on a legacy of working hard, enjoying life and his belief in God all of which were instilled in his descendants.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Wednesday, August 2, 2017 at 11 AM from St. Mary Cathedral in Gaylord.

Visitation will take place at the Nelson Funeral Home on Tuesday, August 1, 2017 from 4 PM – 8 PM and at the cathedral on Wednesday beginning at 10 AM until the time of service.

Memorial contributions in his honor may be made to St. Mary Cathedral Schools.

Arrangements have been entrusted to Nelson Funeral Home and Cremation Service, PO Box 1548, Gaylord, MI 49734.



14 comments on “Purgiel, Clarence”

  1. Sorry for your loss! Thanks for the opportunity to meet and take care of this wonderful man. You all have such a wonderful and loving family. Thinking of everyone at this time. RIP Clarence

  2. Kathleen Haueisen (Peck)

    Our thoughts and prayers are with the Purgiel family. Clarence was a wonderful man and will be missed by so many in the St. Mary’s community. He was a happy man who enjoyed laughing and helping in so many ways at St. Mary’s. May God grant him everlasting peace in heaven. Our deepest condolences ~ The Haueisen Family

  3. Jeff: so sorry to hear of your Dad’s passing. Keeping you in my thoughts and prayers daily. Karen Zaremba DeNike


    Jeff, Dolly, Family..Our prayers to your family at this time..May he rest in peace..Had a chance to visit Clarence at Tender Care few weeks back..We chatted old good times when we worked together at Bingo..Great wisdom that was given to me over those fifteen years..we also were ushers at times..Will miss him..May your family continue his legacy..Dick, Becky Shavinski

  5. Bonnie Misiak Haske

    Jeff, Dolly & Family, my prayers go out to your family on the loss your Dad & Husband~treasure the memories! A long ago friend from Rogers City, Bonnie*

  6. Sorry for the loss of your Husband, father and my cousin from Posen.
    I have fond memories going out to the Purgiel farm when I was young.

    John and Donna McLean

  7. Al Haske-Wojtkowiak

    He was one well loved man and he will be greatly missed. Keeping ya’ll in my thoughts and prayers.

  8. sorry I couldn’t make it to the funeral. am there in spirit. My heart goes out to you all and hope you take comfort in knowing he will always be in heaven with aunt Helen looking down on you all smiling and proud of the great family he helped raise. love you all . Tony

  9. So sorry for your loss. Just found out that Clarence passed. A wonderful man, who did a great deal for st. Mary church and school. God bless the family at this difficult time.

  10. Al Haske-Wojtkowiak

    He was one well loved man and he will be greatly missed. Keeping ya’ll in my thoughts and prayers.

  11. Sorry to hear Clarence had passed.The Lord has taken a great man. He always put his best into everything , be it the church , school or GP.

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