Obituary: Donald Carrick, 84, of New Era

March 30, 2023

Donald Carrick

Obituary: Donald Carrick, 84, of New Era

Donald Carrick, 84 years of age, passed peacefully on Tuesday, March 28, 2023, at his New Era home surrounded by his loving family.

Donald was born, the youngest of two children, on January 15, 1939, in Highland Park, to Elmer and Ruth Carrick. He was educated in the Hazel Park School system in Michigan. Don was also a member of the Our Lady of Assumption Catholic Church in Rothbury.

Don lived a life rich in love, laughter, and adventure. His Irish blood gave him a propensity for storytelling and practical jokes which only makes the lavish tale of his life even greater and more memorable. In his life, Don was taken in many directions. He served as an aircraft mechanic in the United States Army from 1956- 1959. He would say “they’d even let me fly em’ every now and then!” That is one of those classic Don stories that you will never quite know if he was pulling your leg or not, but you loved to hear anyways. Among his other jobs were insurance salesman, a machinist at Harrington Tool in Ludington, and finally, with help from his wife, proprietor of the Heidi Hof Tavern in Free Soil from 1981-1998.

In 1958, while serving in Germany, Don met the love of his life Heidi. Don and Heidi courted for two years with one of those years being spent apart, Don returning to the States and Heidi staying in Germany awaiting her time to be reunited with her Donny. On July 16, 1960, the pair were married, and they never left each other’s side for 63 years. This beautiful love story would eventually bring four children into this world as well as many grand, and great grandchildren.

Aside from being a prolific storyteller, loving husband, and father, Don had many interests and hobbies. At a young age he developed a love of music. From CCR and The Kingston Trio. To Waylon and Willie. He loved just about any type of music he could get his hands on. He even played guitar a little bit and had the honor of playing with the legendary Jack Scott for a time. While he loved it all, he held traditional Irish folk music in high regard and could often be heard singing “When Irish Eyes Are Smiling” to his kids and grandkids. Don also enjoyed the outdoors. Hunting, fishing, camping, and even scuba diving was on the top of his list of things to do. Even in his later years he would spend time rock hunting, panning for gold, and exploring ghost towns with Heidi in Arizona. He was also a huge fan of westerns. From old John Wayne movies to Louis L ‘Amour books, Don loved the cowboy stories he grew up with. If you got just the right amount of Irish whiskey in him he might even start to take on some of that John Wayne swagger and offer up a nod and a heartfelt “Hawdy.”

Don loved a great many things. A cold beer on a hot day. A doughnut with his daughter. A nip of the Jameson with his sons. A hearty laugh with friends. He was passionate about helping people. He was equally passionate about roadside hotdog stands. For the people that were lucky enough to know and love him, he will be remembered as a great man, friend, husband, father, helper and storyteller.

Donald’s memory will live on and be cherished by those he leaves behind: His wife of 63 years, Heidi; children, Craig (Nick), Kurt (Julie), Shelly (Eric), and Jake (Priscilla). He also leaves behind one sister, Mary Nicholson; five grandchildren, Edel, Heidi Marie, Paul, Erin, and Johnny. In addition, he leaves eight great-grandchildren; and a host of nieces and nephews, cousins, and friends. Lastly, he leaves behind his faithful pups, Jessie and Chico.

Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11 a.m., Wednesday, April 5, 2023, at Our Lady of the Assumption Catholic Church, 2964 West Winston Road, Rothbury, with Fr. Peter Omogo presiding. The family will receive friends from 4 to 8 p.m., Tuesday, April 4, 2023, at Beacon Cremation & Funeral Service, King-Hart Chapel, 2370 North 72nd Avenue, Hart with a time of sharing to begin at 7 p.m. Interment will be in the New Era Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to AgeWell Services of West Michigan – Meals on Wheels,

Beacon Cremation & Funeral Service, King-Hart Chapel, is in charge of arrangements.

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