Life Story / Obituary
Bruce Jerome Ellis, age 78, passed away on Wednesday, February 17, 2021, in Holland after a one-year battle with ALS.
Bruce was born on October 2, 1942 in Glen Ullin, North Dakota. He was adopted by J. Dee and Marjorie Ellis and grew up in Red Oak, Iowa, moving eventually to Lapeer, Michigan. The family moved to Farmington, MI where he graduated from High School in 1960.
Bruce earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Industrial Arts Education from Western Michigan University and taught Shop for West Ottawa Public Schools for 32 years. While attending Western Michigan Bruce met and married the love of his life Teresa Vander Poel.
Bruce was very involved in Boy Scouts earning his Eagle Scout award at age 13 and attending the National Jamboree in Valley Forge, PA in 1957. His involvement in Scouting continued into adulthood where he served as an Assistant Scoutmaster for many years at Troop 147 in Holland, MI. Bruce was thrilled to attend Philmont Scout Ranch with his son and many Scouting friends in 1983.
In addition to Teresa, Bruce is survived by his son David and wife Michelle (Greiner), their children Mike, Monica, Emily, and Eileen; his daughter Kathryn Ellis-Ramirez and her husband Toby, their children Alec and Amelia. Bruce is also survived by many of Teresa’s siblings and spouses, many nieces and nephews, and a biological half-sister Marguerite Muhlhauser he recently became acquainted with through ancestry research.
The family would like to express their gratitude for the awesome Heritage Meadow neighbors who provided so much support during Bruce’s illness. Bruce would often remark that they had “The best neighbors”.
Bruce elected to donate his body to Western Michigan University Medical School. A memorial service will be held at a later date. Memorial contributions may be given to The Michigan Crossroads Council, Boy Scouts of America (https://michiganscouting.org/donate-friends-of-scouting/) or ALS of Michigan.(https://alsofmichigan.org/donation-opportunities/)
Arrangements are by Dykstra Funeral Homes-Mulder Chapel.