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Gary Arnold Culver passed away on Thursday, January 23, 2014 at the age of 70. His loving wife, Lin, was with him when he died and she and his furry friend, Brittie, are missing him desperately. Gary spent his last days under Hospice care, surrounded by caring friends and family members. He was preceded in death by his parents, Arnold and Cecile (Nielsen) Culver of Hart, and by his brother-in-law Dick Carstens of Scottville. In addition to his wife, Lin, Gary is survived by his brother David (Marie) Culver of Hart, sisters-in-law Donna (Bill) Dyson and Judy Carstens; niece Anya (Val) Gorzynski and nephew Jacob Carstens.

Gary was raised in Hart, Michigan where he learned to fish and tie flies, pick cherries, bale hay, play sports and build things. He was a top student and an athlete at Hart High, earning all-conference honors in basketball and all-state in football. Summers were spent at a cottage in Baldwin and his dad, a homebuilder, kept Gary in shape for sports by having him haul bricks and roofing supplies and mix concrete.

Working with his dad led Gary to a lifetime in the construction industry. He earned degrees in civil engineering and business administration at Michigan State University (go green!), where he and his fraternity brothers had a grand time and many misadventures. After school, he enlisted in Navy OCS and joined the Seabees. He proudly served in Vietnam and Italy, and then came home to begin a career in construction management. He leaves a legacy of high-end commercial, residential, and hospital projects in the Grand Rapids area.

Gary had a fine mind and many interests and talents: He loved nature, plants and landscaping, had his own vineyard, and produced some excellent wines. He was an inventor, designer and craftsman who loved woodworking and made beautiful and unique boxes and sculptures. After retiring, he also pursued painting and pottery. He had a lifelong love of MSU, travelled widely and was fluent in Italian. Gary was crazy about music (Bob Dylan), and art, cooking, riding his motorcycle, digging in the dirt, photography, reading and entertaining, and he was the world’s


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14 Condolences

  1. Jeff Schreur on January 26, 2014 at 8:19 am

    Lin – I feel a hole in my heart after learning of Gary’s passing – He will be missed by all who knew him – He was a wonderful person and friend – My heartfelt sympathies to you – Jeff (and Susie)

  2. cal geers on January 26, 2014 at 9:24 am

    Lin I am very sorry for your loss. Gary was my boss and a friend years ago when we both worked for Lamar Corp. I learned at lot working with and for him and even though we have not kept in touch I will miss him.

  3. Jarrad Pitts on January 26, 2014 at 9:48 am

    Gary – I love you and will miss you greatly.

  4. Pete Wade on January 26, 2014 at 12:28 pm

    Linda and I were stunned and saddened at Gary’s passing. He was such a stalwart soul that he was one of those people that you thought might persevere through just about anything. Always a leader and looked up to by all of his friends, Gary was truly a respected and admired force. Our sincerest sympathies to Lin and his family. We will miss Gary.

  5. Donna Grill on January 26, 2014 at 12:53 pm

    Lin, I’m so sorry for your loss. May your many happy memories comfort you.

  6. Tim and Thea Gabrielse on January 26, 2014 at 3:15 pm

    We are so very sorry for your loss. We were shocked by how quickly he left. We will always think of Gary with a smile. He was such a positive and happy man with a kind and thoughtful heart. He made us feel special and was a gift to be around. We are so sad that we cannot make more memories together. We keep you in our heart and prayers knowing how sad and heartbroken this makes you. We are here to help in any way you may need.

  7. Pam and Gary VanOverloop on January 27, 2014 at 8:34 am

    Lin, We were so sorry to hear Gary passed away. He was such a special man with a truly kind soul and will be missed by anyone who knew him. Loop will miss their monthly lunches. You are in our thoughts and prayers.
    Pam and Gary

  8. Bill Cherry on January 27, 2014 at 5:20 pm

    Lin so sorry for your loss. Gary was such a straight shooter I loved working with him. You know he is in heaven with his four legged friends. He will be missed.

  9. Dorothy Moul on January 28, 2014 at 11:41 am

    Dear Dave and Marie,
    Please accept my sympathies on the passing of your brother. Trusting God will give you comfort at this difficult time.
    Al and Dorothy

  10. Tom Peterson on January 28, 2014 at 11:50 am

    I’m so very sorry to hear of Gary’s passing. I had the pleasure of working closely with him for many years. He was an honest, loyal friend who will be missed by all those who had the pleasure of knowing him.

  11. bill wing on January 30, 2014 at 4:42 am

    Lin-So sorry to read about Gary. I cut his hair for 28 years. My grandparents had a store in Hart,and a cottage on Pentwater Lake. I spent my youth at Hart-Silver Lake-Juniper Beach and Pentwater. We talked the area when he got his hair cut.I will miss him.

  12. Patti Hammond-Cook on January 30, 2014 at 7:45 pm

    Hi Lin, I’m so sorry for your loss. Don’t know if you remember me, but I was Bo’s mom, one of your pups. We moved up to Silver Lake 6 years ago. Don’t know if you still have the Lake Michigan place, but we would love to see you again. Please know our thoughts and prayers are with you through this difficult time. C

  13. Rose Hensch on February 2, 2014 at 12:04 am

    I just heard about the death of your husband. Just wanted to send our sympathy to you.
    Rose, Nicole and Gabes Hensch

  14. Ron & Myrna(Nielsen) Weaver on February 4, 2014 at 7:14 pm

    Our deepest sympathies to Gary’s family. Although we didn’t know him personally it was obvious he had a wide-ranging interests and loved life.

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