Cover photo for James R. Steele's Obituary
James R. Steele Profile Photo

James R. Steele

Jim passed away, Sunday, November 6, 2022 at Life Care Center in Plainwell.

He was born April 5, 1938 in Plainwell, the son of Robert and Mildred Steele. Jim proudly served his country in the Army National Guard. For many years he worked as a press operator for General Motors until his retirement in 1995. Jim enjoyed fishing, mushroom hunting and gardening. He loved spending time with his family and his pets. On June 23, 1956 he married Mary Ellen Brower who survives.

Also surviving are his children, Debbie (fiancée, Dan Simpson) Steele of Allegan, Jim Jr. (Mary Jo) Steele of Cooper Township and Gary (Terri) Steele of Plainwell; 7 grandchildren, Karen, Bobbie, Josh, Jake, David, Anna and Greyson; 11 great-grandchildren; brother, John (Joan) Steele of Plainwell; step-sister, Shar Black of Plainwell along with several nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents.

Friends may visit with Jim’s family starting at 10:00 A.M., Friday, November 11, 2022, at the Winkel Funeral Home, Otsego, until the time of the funeral service at 11:00 A.M. with celebrant, Bill Rose officiating.

Burial will follow at South Martin Cemetery.

Contributions in memory of Jim may be made to

Wishbone Pet Rescue.

Messages of condolence may be posted at


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Condolence Messages

Lynne Mills Burnett

November 8, 2022 at 7:50 am

One of the hardest things in life is saying good-bye for the last time when a loved one leaves this earth. I hope you all have many memories and stories to share that help you cope with that final good-bye and maybe even have a laugh at your DAD’S own version of the big one that got away. Was it a fish… or a mushroom? Either way, it was his story, even tho “it” got bigger every time he’s told it.

Peace be with you all as you say farewell to your Dad, your Husband, and Grandpa.


Terri Steele

November 9, 2022 at 1:33 pm

Pa, We loved your simple ways , a man of few words yet we knew how much you loved us. It’s been so easy being your daughter in law, simply baking treats for you was a treat for me. Thank you for being the best Poppa for Greyson, he will carry those “stories of Poppa” to share for many years to come.

Most Importantly I Thank you for raising a really funny, loving and caring son – Gary – that I have been blessed to share this adventure called life with. We will love and miss you . Rest Now Pa


Sharon A Curry

November 12, 2022 at 6:04 pm

Jim, Gary and Deb

So sorry to read about your Dad in the paper. He was a good neighbor and to be honest I loved watching him. Mow, taking the garbage out etc. Larry would come home laughing about their talks while riding home from work. I didnot know early enough to come to the funeral. Sorry for your loss.

Chick Curry


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