Kristine J. Antcliff, 76, a resident of Little Traverse, passed away peacefully at Omega House with family by her side, following a rare and lengthy illness.
“Kris”, as she liked to be called, was born on March 20, 1944 in Ishpeming, MI, to William and Signe (Swanson) Billings. She attended local schools and graduated from Allegan High School in 1962. Following high school, Kris attended Michigan Technological University, where she earned her Bachelor’s Degree in biochemistry. It was during her time at MTU that she met her husband-to-be. On December 31, 1966, Kris was united in marriage to Dr. John “Jack” Rowe, a young, charismatic, and soon-to-be well-known local doctor. Kris and Jack started their new family, and in 1970, welcomed their son, Andrew into the world. Two years later, followed their daughter, Amy. Tragically, the fine young doctor, husband, and father succumbed to cancer, just 8 months after the birth of Amy in 1972. With a lot of help from family and friends, Kris continued to raise her 2 young children. She began to volunteer for the American Cancer Society, where she would meet Gerald “Jerry” Antcliff, whom she would later marry, on her birthday, March 20, 1976.
Kris’ Christian faith was very important to her. She practiced it genuinely, holding Bible studies for women, giving to people in need, and just living an all-around good life. Kris was a very generous person, and held little value in material things. She took great joy in giving to people. She was a very sentimental person, dearly cherishing every gift that she had ever received from friends or loved ones. No matter how insignificant it may seem to anyone else, it would have been received as the Hope Diamond to Kris. Anytime somebody gave her something to eat, it was the best meal ever. She was always so thankful and so impressed. Not because she was exhibiting phony thankfulness, but because she was truly thankful, from the bottom of her heart. She saw and experienced life from her heart. Things held value to her because of love.
Kris was very well loved by many people. If you knew her, chances were that you thought of her as a mother or a best friend. She just had that effect on people.
She found a passion and gift in what she considered to be her Christian mission- being a Christian clown. “Fidgit” the clown, was often found entertaining church groups, nursing homes, schools, birthday parties, and other events, often times with her helper, husband Jerry. Sometimes, to the embarrassment of her children, Fidgit would show up after school in the family car to pick them up.
Kris also loved to travel, meet new people, and to cook. She had a special place in her heart for people with special needs. This began after she realized as a young girl, what a blessing her brother Billy (who had Down Syndrome) was on the world.
Kris was a very devoted person. She was devoted to her family and friends, and to her Christian faith. She would often say things like, “I love you so much, but God loves you even more”. She was a member of Faith Lutheran Church and attended Glad Tidings Assembly of God. She was a very spiritual woman.
Kris is preceded in death by husband, Jack Rowe; her parents, William and Signe Billings; brother, Billy Billings; “adopted grandson” KJ Rowe; her “hero”, Elsie Rowe; and husband Jerry Antcliff, along with a few other very dear friends and relatives. She is survived by her son, Andy (Pam) Rowe of Laurium; daughter, Amy (Jake) Garrow of Calumet; grandchildren: John Michael Rowe of Marquette; Jacob Jr., Bethany, and Daniel Garrow of Calumet; along with numerous nieces, nephews, cousins, family, and friends.
Per Kris’ wishes, cremation has taken place, and a celebration of life ceremony will take place in the summer.
Kris’ family would like to deeply thank the staff at At Home Companions, Canal View, Omega House, and every caregiver for their excellent service over the past several years. Any of you that knew her, knew that you were family to her. She loved you.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you send donations to Omega House in Kris’ name.
Online condolences can be left at www.ericksoncrowleypeterson.com
The Erickson Crowley Peterson Funeral Home in Calumet is assisting the family with arrangements.