Barbara Michaels

Barbara Michaels

 Barbara Cooley Michaels passed away Tuesday, June 17, 2014 at her home in Otsego. Barb was born June 16, 1932 in Otsego to Gerald and Minnie (Arendsen) Langeance.

She worked for Farnsworth Chevrolet and Rock-Tenn. She was a member of the First Congregational Church of Otsego, the Golden Girls, Friends of the Otsego Library, Trustee of the Otsego Area Historical Society, Tuesday morning Bible study, Red Hatters and was very passionate about being head of the Thursday Homeless Quilters of the First Congregational Church.

Barb enjoyed her morning walks with Brenda, quilting, the lakeshore, flower gardening, reading, knitting, sewing, and most of all her family and friends.

Surviving are her children, Stephenie (Dave Makela) Nelson, Susan (Rick) Rickli and Michael Cooley all of Otsego; seven grandchildren, Chris, Josh(Lora), Jeremy (Kelly), Jason (Jessica), Jonathan, Rachelle and Matt; two great-grandchildren, Kayden and Aliahana; several grand pups; her sister, Maryln Langeance of Otsego; her brother, Scott Langejans of Kalamazoo; several nieces and nephews; and her step-children, Rita and Paul.

Preceding her in death are her parents; husbands, Lewis Cooley in 1973 and John “Jack” Michaels in 2004; her daughter-in-law, Cindy Cooley in 2002; her sister and brother-in-law, Joyce (Ray) Baker; and her brother and sister-in-law, Don (Jean) Langeance.

Friends may visit with Barb’s family from 6-8 P.M. Thursday, June 19, 2014 at the Winkel Funeral Home, Otsego. A memorial service will take place Friday at 3:00 P.M. at the First Congregational Church of Otsego, Pastor Darrin Youngs officiating.

Contributions in memory of Barb may be made to the First Congregational Church of Otsego Mission Fund, Friends of the Otsego Library, or to the Otsego Area Historical Society Museum.

Messages of condolence may be posted at



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Messages of Condolence

  1. Agnes Schmitt vanarsdal says:

    My heart is very heavy to hear of Barb’s passing. I knew her through the Red Hat’s of Otsego. I could see her love for God and people, through all the things she did. May God’s grace be with each of the people who loved her. So very very sorry Marilyn. Hugs and love— Agnes

  2. Teri (Filkins) Laster says:

    Marilyn & family, Jack & I send our thoughts & prayers to you. I spent a few fun filled holiday bazaars with Barb @ the Congregational church. She was a very kind & gentle spirit. I know you have wonderful memories & pray they bring you peace @ this time.

  3. randi deneau says:

    I’m so sorry to hear of the passing of Barb. I met her through the redhatters. She was such a wonderful lady. She will be greatly missed.

  4. Alice Pickett says:

    Maryln,Sorry to hear about Barb she was a beautiful lady and she will be missed. My prayers go out to you and your family

  5. Don and Shirley Brown, Flossie Wesler says:

    Dear Marilyn, and family. Sorry for this deep lose. She was so such a gentle spirit and loving person. Sending thoughts and prays for peace to you all.this time.

  6. Fred & Sue Bosma says:

    Our deepest sympathy Steph,Susie,Mike and the whole family, Thanking God for all the many examples Barb showed all of us on how to be a good mom, a fun mom, a loyal friend,and most of all a humble servant. Hugs to all love Fred and Sue Bosma

  7. Tammy Thompson-Drake says:

    God bless you all,so very sorry to hear of Barbs passing, hugs and lots of love to all of you. Prayers for strength, love, and comfort.

  8. Lynn Bronkema says:

    Barb will be greatly missed. I met her though the beauty shope and church. She was always fun to talk to and we would always have a laugh or to. My Prayers go out to all of her family. God Bless.

  9. Tim & Laurie Andrus says:

    Barb will be missed by so many of her volunteer groups, friends and families. She contributed her many gifts in so many ways. The Otsego community has lost a very meaningful lady. Our hearts are with you as you work through the formal motions. God will help you remember the many, many good times. Cameron and I will not forget her being at Plainwell Lanes for bowling so many Saturdays 😉
    Bear hugs full of warmth and understanding.

  10. Dee Krcatovich says:

    Stef, Sue, Mike and families, My thoughts, prayers, love, and condolences are with you in the loss of your beautiful Mom. She was one great lady and made a great impact on the community. Her love of others, the kindness and concern she showed to everyone, and her ability to make people smile will be dearly missed. It will be extremely hard not physically hugging her on Sunday morning or sharing a greeting or wisecrack, but knowing she no longer struggles and now rests in peace in her Heavenly Father’s arms is such a comforting feeling. May God wrap his loving arms around all of you in the days to come and give you peace, comfort, love, and beautiful memories to carry on with life as your Mom would want you to do. Kudos to you kids for loving and taking care of her in her final days. What a great job you did, and I know she loves you and appreciates it so much. Her legacy lives on in all of you. Love to all.

  11. Nancy Kitchens Ellis says:

    Father, You can count the stars and call them all by name. Your power is absolute. Your understanding is beyond comprehension. You comfort those who mourn. We declare that those grieving the death of Barb, mourning will turn into dancing. We confess that You are their rock, fortress, and Savior in whom they will find protection. You are their shield, and the strength of their salvation. Father, You are their stronghold. As they call on You, You have promised to answer. I believe that You will be with them during this period of bereavement, rescue them from grief, honor them, and give them Your salvation. Amen Sending love to all of you from Missouri

  12. Carl Wood says:

    Barb was A great person and A wonderful member of the Friends of the Library member she will be greatly missed.

  13. Ruth Young says:

    I’m very sorry to hear about your loss of your Mother- my heart is heavy for you. May God shine His face upon you, may He stand with you and hold your hand as you walk through this valley.

  14. penny browning says:

    Dear Family…gracious…courageous…kind…fair…those are some of the words i think of about Barb. I remember coming over on Christmas Eve…Barb helped my mom make my prom dress…Lew was the brother my dad never had…back and forth as friends, as family over 60+ years.

  15. Tim and Marcia Quigley says:

    Dear Family of Barb,
    We were so saddened to hear of Barb’s passing. The last time we saw her she had a big smile on her face and she gave me a great big hug! She was always so nice to us, always so friendly! I will miss seeing her on her walks with Brenda. Please know that she is now a special Angel in Heaven watching over you! Love and prayers to all of you!

  16. Dale & Joyce Blanchard says:

    So sorry for your loss, We all will miss her wonderful smile and friendliness toward everyone she met she will be greatly missed. Our prayers are with all of you. She is now at peace and with her heavenly father.

  17. Sheila & Jim Robbins & Steven Riley says:

    Barb ‘s Family, She was a lovely lady. Our Sympathies and Prays to you.

  18. Darl and Joyce Gilliland says:

    To all of Barb’s family,
    What a Sweetie Barb was to everyone and everywhere she went. We know it’s going to be difficult getting through the coming days, but remember you are not alone. We pray that our Heavenly Father wraps you in his arms and gives you comfort. There are so many praying for you and when you weep remember that you are weeping on God’s shoulder. Think of the fun times you shared, it will bring a smile to your face and lift your spirits. Sending many hugs and so much love.
    Darl and Joyce

  19. Deb Lovett-Seekman says:

    Stef, Sue, Mike and families,
    So sorry to hear of your loss. Remember all the good times at the lake. I will miss seeing her and Brenda walking around town. My thoughts are with you.

  20. Barb Blanchard (Austin) says:

    Thoughts and prayers to the family. Got to know many moms thru Ardith Boulter’s ceramics on her front porch East Hammond st. Two great women that are no longer with us. Will greatly miss seeing her walking & waving.

  21. Joan Walters says:

    Family of Barb

    So sadden to learn of Barb’s passing. She was a part of the Walters/Wolters family that always was there during our extended family gatherings, be it weddings, anniversaries, cousin’s dinners, or funerals. She will be missed

  22. jerry haight says:

    worked for a number of years with barb at the rock. Whenever I was in need of a friendly smile all I had to do was go see barb. sad to hear of her passing.

  23. Deb Anderson says:

    Steph, Sue, Mike and families. Just wanted to tell you how proud I know your Mom and Nana is of her family tonight. I was, and so was everyone around me in the church today so very touched by the service and by the Family’s tribute to her and yes even little Kayden’s part. All of you shared how much LOVE and respect you had for her and always will. She was a remarkable lady who left her mark on this community. I know everyone she was involved with in this community (The Golden Girls, her church family, the library friends, the quilters, and her Family) will feel a deep emptiness without her, but will always have all the Wonderful memories to look back on and remember. May God wrap his arms around each of you and give you peace and strength in the upcoming days and weeks ahead. Her prayer said it all today about how she wants her family and friends to be watched over by God and to continue on withtheir lives. We were all blessed to have “Barbie” in our lives and will be forever thankful for that. Safe travels next weekend and have a Beautiful time at the wedding. She would want that and she will be with all of you in spirit…..Love and Bless each of you.

  24. jamie radcliffe says:

    We were so saddened to hear of Barbs passing. She would always try to talk Zach into some funny custume for Halloween at brendas shop,I was always appreciative of her talking him out of the scary one! Years later she was a wonderful cheerleader for Zach and John during playing doubles for tennis. What a wonderful lady! She will be greatly missed but what a wonderful angel God has gained!

  25. Lisa Rickli says:

    Sue, just wanted to let you know your mom was a very wonderfully kind and special person. I know how close you were to her. My prayers to you and your family. She will be missed by myself and to many.

  26. debbie otte says:

    Step, Sue and family Sorry I didn’t know about this. I loved your mom.She was always kind and happy to see me. I am so sorry for your loss. She will be missed by everyone who knew her. Take care Debbie Otte

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