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Grace Marie (Slack) Nilsson, age 65, of Allegan, passed away Monday, July 16, 2018 after a long, hard-fought battle with autoimmune disorders. She was the cherished wife of Tomas (Patrik) Nilsson. 

Grace was a graduate of Plainwell High School and devoted her entire career to being an educator, advocate and facilitator in the Head Start and human services programs for 40 years, primarily at the Allegan County administration building. At holidays, she helped ensure that families in need received food and gifts. She dedicated several years to leading and supporting Girl Scouts, by way of bringing new troops to the area spearheading fundraisers, day and week-long camping, science exhibitions, museums and international travel. 
As her disease progressed and she became disabled, she found it extremely difficult to attend church, so she communed with God directly, from home. She enjoyed listening to Christian music and did her best to continue her Christian path as she was able. Grace was a passionate believer in fairness, justice, equality, opportunity and above all, kindness and love for everyone. 
She is preceded in death by her parents, Edwin and Bessie (Moses) Slack, two brothers, Virgil Simmons, Jr. and Jay Simmons, and her sister Violet Slack. Surviving are her two remaining sisters, Ruth Srackangast of Blanco, TX, and Jeanine (Rick) Handy of Allegan, MI and her daughter Marcy (Linnea) Johnson of Winchester, MA. 
Where there is hatred, let me sow love. 
Where there is hurt, pardon.
Where there is doubt, faith. 
Where there is despair, hope.
Where there is darkness, light. 
Where there is sadness, joy. 
O Divine Master; grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console; to be understood as to understand; to be loved as to love; for it is in pardoning that we are pardoned and in dying that we are born to eternal life. 
     – Prayer of St. Francis of Assisi
Honoring her wishes, cremation and tissue donation will take place. To send a message of sympathy to the family, sign Grace’s online guestbook or to share a favorite memory, please
Arrangements are entrusted to Michigan Cremation & Funeral Care, Grand Rapids.  


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9 Condolences

  1. Angela Long on July 19, 2018 at 11:00 pm

    I worked with Grace for 15 years through Head Start, but she was there long before I started working there as she was there when I was a child in the program. I enjoyed talking with Grace and seeing her weekly. She will be missed. Prayers go out to her family and friends. Rest in peace Grace.

  2. Ruth Srackangast on July 20, 2018 at 8:54 am

    Grace has a very special place in my heart and I will missed very much. God has taken home one of his Special Angels.

  3. Edmund Lee on July 21, 2018 at 3:18 am

    I met Grace online many years ago, through an old school talker (chat MUD called Hotel). I was going through a very difficult period, but she was a sympathetic listener, and provided me with much needed guidance, solace and comfort during dark times; for which I am eternally grateful. Grace, thank you and may you rest in peace.

  4. Karen Burnell Krajecki on July 22, 2018 at 9:38 pm

    I have known Grace literally my whole life. Her parents and mine were friends and as adults I lived next door to Grace and Marcy. U have so many fond memories of camping and movies and hanging out. She had the biggest kindest heart, she would by things for her head start class and gifts for her students, even if that meant she had to go without. Heaven gained an angel.

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