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John "Pudy" Voelker

Saturday, April 25, 1925 - Friday, December 4, 2020
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John "Pudy" Voelker, 95, a resident of Calumet passed away on December 4, 2020 at
Mission Point of Hancock, MI.

John was born on April 25, 1925 in Quincy Location to Charles and Marceline (Cote) Voelker. He attended the local schools and graduated from Sacred Heart High School in 1943. While in high school, John enjoyed playing basketball and earned the Most Valuable Player award during his senior year.

Following high school John went on to work in the copper mines for many years. He worked for the Quincy Mining Company, Calumet & Hecla Mining Company, White Pine Copper Company, and Homestead Mining Company. He also worked for several local construction companies before working at Michigan Tech as a laboratory assayist before retiring.

John married Ellen Kanniainen on November 23, 1946. They enjoyed 54 years together raising 4 children and enjoying their grandchildren and great grandchildren. Seven years were spent as proud owners of Tebor's Party Store on Hecla Street in Laurium from 1963 - 1970.

John was a hard worker and liked to stay active. He could often be seen in his yard tending to the cedar hedges, planting trees, building extra garages, and taking 5 mile walks. He loved people and spent his later years going to grandchildren's sporting games and visiting the local establishments, sparking conversation with everybody. Pudy was well known and loved in the community and will be missed by many.

John is preceded in death by his parents, Charles and Marceline Voelker; wife Ellen; son Gary; siblings George, Eleanor, Francis, Adele, Kathleen, and Paul; and granddaughter Morgan.

He is survived by 3 children: Ronald (Cheryl) Voelker of Battle Creek; Mary (Glen) Manninen of Chassell; Sandra (David) Hendrickson of Marquette; and daughter-in-law Roberta (Spurr) Voelker of Oswego, IL; as well as 7 grandchildren: Robert (Carla) Voelker of Youngsville, NC, Gary (Kim) Voelker, Jr. of Timnath, CO, Jason (Amanda) Voelker of Montgomery, IL, Abe (Chris) Voelker of Calumet, MI, Carey Hendrickson Espinoza of Marquette MI, Stacy Hendrickson of Traverse City, MI, and Ryan (Courtney)Hendrickson of Ann Arbor, MI.

Also surviving are 13 great grandchildren and numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins.

A private funeral service will be held at the Erickson Crowley Peterson Funeral Home.
Burial will take place in the Lake View Cemetery in Calumet in the spring.

Online condolences for the family may be left at www.ericksoncrowleypeterson.com

The Erickson Crowley Peterson Funeral Home in Calumet is assisting the family.
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Service Details

  • Interment

    Lake View Cemetery
    Address Not Available
    Calumet, Michigan 49913
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email


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Jackie & Jim, Susan & Jim, Zac (Darlene) & Tom

Posted at 05:28pm
Please accept our most heartfelt sympathies for your loss... Our thoughts are with you and your family during this difficult time.
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Chuck Voelker

Posted at 09:41am
We are so very sad to learn of the passing of Pudy. I remember visiting him in the early 80s many times at the lab at Tech and chatting about anything and everything. I remember stopping by to catch him and Paulie having coffee together. And I was fortunate enough to be able to visit him in Calumet in late 2019 and talk about all different things, but mostly his memories of mining and the Copper Country. He was a wonderful person and will be missed by so many. I will certainly miss the stories he could tell! Chuck, Kelly, Dustin and Corey Voelker, Plymouth, MI.

Duane Quello

Posted at 09:27am
Enjoyed talking to Pudy esp. about cutting and working with firewood. He was not afraid of doing hard work even at his age.

Sandra Bonenfant

Posted at 04:55pm
Sandy Mary and Ronnie so sorry to hear about your father's passing he was so great so many memories your little grocery store on Hecla Street waiting for you and Mary to get off work so we could go out such great memories from back then I think about them all the time and I do think about you quite often wish I had some of those memories back their parents were the greatest love to you all. Sandra Raisanen 586 420 0497

Alan Piirala

Posted at 11:45am
Just wanted to send my deepest sympathy to the family. Puddy was by far the most influential person I have ever met! We spent
many hours with Ron, Dan, Rocket, and myself watching the evening news with Walter C. after Puddy closed the store for the
night . He would bring us all a beer and say come on guys and watch the news - " You've been playing cards all night and need
to catch up with what is going on in the world. His wisdom and humor would have each of us hanging on for the next kernal
of knowledge he might pass on.

Ron , Mary, and Sandy - I cannot express how sorry I was to hear the news of your Dad's passing. He was definitely my Hero
and a man that I had the utmost respect for. He will be missed by so very many. May he rest in Peace.

Love you all and God Bless

Alan "Buggy" Piirala

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