Michael Joseph LaVanway, 67, passed away Sunday, April 8

Michael Joseph LaVanway, 67, of St. Joseph, passed away Sunday, April 8, 2018 at home surrounded by his loving family. A memorial service will be held Thursday, April 12, 2018 at 11:00 AM at the Trinity Lutheran Church, 619 Market St., St. Joseph with Pastor Michael J. Roth officiating. Burial with military honors will immediately follow the service at Riverview Cemetery. Friends may visit with the family Wednesday, April 11, 2018 from 5:00 to 7:00 PM at Starks and Menchinger Funeral Home, 2650 Niles Rd., St. Joseph, MI. Memorials may be made in Michael’s name to Caring Circle Hospice. Those wishing to leave a condolence online may do so at www.starks-menchinger.com.

Michael was born October 12, 1950 in Benton Harbor, MI to Norville and Lucille (Nigro) LaVanway. After graduating high school, he proudly served his country in the United States Army 1970-1973 and became a Deputy for the Berrien County Sheriff’s Department for the remainder of his career. On December 1, 1986 he married the love of his life, Clara Fay Baggett in Bridgman. Michael was a dedicated member of the F.O.P. and American Legion, an avid Chicago Cubs fan, and enjoyed fishing and hunting whenever he could. He loved spending time with his beloved wife and family and filming his son’s football games.      

Michael is survived by his wife, Clara; children, Melissa (Mike) Gerlach of Stevensville, Jennifer (Danny) Davison of Stevensville, Michelle (Dave) Edmonds of Hartford, Mindy LaVanway of Watervliet, Nicole LaVanway of St. Joseph and Michael LaVanway of St. Joseph; grandchildren, Brooke, Brianna, Alissa, Gabe, Cole, Brett, Cage, Jackson, Presley and Chris; great-grandchild, Kinlee; sister, Pam (Bob) Adams and brother, Thomas (Laura) LaVanway.  Michael was preceded by his parents.




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