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John Robert “Jack” Skivington, age 71, of Greenville, passed away Saturday morning, January 26, 2013 at his home under the loving care of his family and Faith Hospice.

The son of William & Mary Lou (Coulborn) Skivington, he was born on July 6, 1941 in Long Island, New York, and earned his Master of Arts degree from West Michigan University. On November 25, 1977, in Belding, he married Mary Geisen-Loper and together they enjoyed over 35 years of marriage.

For 36 years, Mr. Skivington was an educator with Belding Area Schools, teaching social studies at the high school and middle school. In addition, he coached softball, baseball, basketball, and golf and had announced at football and basketball games, as well as volunteering at many school related activities.

He was preceded in death by his parents; and a sister, Patricia Yonker. Surviving are his wife, Mary Skivington of Greenville; two sons, Richard & Jenifer Skivington, and Michael & Carol Skivington, all of Texas; two daughters, Denise & Darren Jones of Greenville, and Caryn & Jeremy Smith of Belding; his grandchildren, Andrew, Amanda, Claire, Spencer, Madisyn, Tyler, Logan, Ethen, Wyatt, Bentley, and Noah; a sister, Margaret Latora of Portage; and many nieces and nephews.

Visitation with the family is Saturday from 12-2 p.m. at Christiansen Cremation & Funeral Care, 511 S. Franklin Street, Greenville, with a time of food and fellowship immediately following at the Greenville American Legion. Cremation has taken place and private family services will be held. Instead of flowers, Jack would have appreciated contributions in his memory to the Belding Area Schools Students with Disabilities Fund.Special Education at Belding Area Schools. To send a message of sympathy to the family, sign Mr. Skivington’s online guest book, or to share a favorite memory, please visit: Christiansen Cremation & Funeral Care, Greenville, is serving the family.


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1 Condolence

  1. Anonymous on January 26, 2013 at 12:00 am

    Posted by: P.A. Kiste
    Mary – I was sorry to hear your sad news. I have never forgotten how kind both of you were to me while I was in H.S. What a great loss. May your faith in God and your comfort in the love and caring of your friends and family help you find peace. Love- Paul

    Posted by: Bob Mary Schieffer

    A beautiful tribute to your Dad. Our sympathy to you Mike. So nice that you all have been able to spend some time together and thanks for sharing the pictures.

    Posted by: Amanda Wisniewski
    My family lives down the street from the Skivingtons. I grew up seeing Mr. S walk his Basset Hound, Emma, down the street every day. He always waved and gave me a great big smile and always had kind words to say to me. My thoughts and prayers are with his family at this time.

    Posted by: Michaela Robinson (Havey)

    Mr. Skivington impacted so many people in his life with just his caring smile. I remember my first day of public school in 8th grade, students were to report to their homeroom, I mistakenly went in and sat in his room. During role call he announced that there was one too many students and that when that person “me” realized it they were free to go. I was terrified of embarrassing myself so I stayed the whole period. When the bell rang and we were all filing out of the room Mr. Skiv real suttely said, with a smile, “I’ll see you in C block Miss Havey”. He was one of the GREATS everyone who met him was blessed and for those who didnt, missed out on one of the worlds gifts to offer. My sarrows go out to the family for their loss I truely hope that your memories of him are joyful and stay strong, I’m positive they will for everyone who he had encountered. RIP Mr. Skivington THANK YOU!!!

    Posted by: Dale and Julie Steigenberg
    Wonderful man. Keeping the family in our prayers.

    Posted by: Jacquie Becher
    Mike and Carol – So sorry about your Dad passing. I have been reading his guestbook postings and learning what a wonderful person your Dad was. Hugs to your family.

    Posted by: Nancy Baum
    Mary, my thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. I remember Jack as a man that brightened any room or hallway that he entered with his big smile. I understand your pain.

    Posted by: Kent Ingles
    A class act who touched many lives. He was born to be around kids and so many benefitted from time spent with him. His family, friends, colleagues and a whole community will surely miss him!

    Posted by: Jenny Albert (Minard)

    Mr. Skivington was my softball coach all through high school. He played a big role in my love of sports. He was always encouraging and believed in me. He believed in me enough to let me try my hand at pitching, let’s just say that position was saved for the girls who didn’t hit the batters. The point is he always let you try and sometimes it worked and sometimes not so much! He will be remembered! RIP Skivy!

    Posted by: Kimberly Burton Drabik

    Mr.Skivington was a Teacher, Coach and wonderful Person who guided me when I became pregnant as a Teen from my high school sweetheart. He showed I could still graduate and I did. God bless you,Sir. Your one to respect and admire. You earned it. Love & Hugs to the Family.

    Posted by: Mr. & Mrs. William Sutherland
    Dear Mary & Family,

    So sorry to hear of Jack’s passing. We want you to know that our thoughts and prayers are with you. We are sure you have many good memories of Jack that will remain with you forever.

    Bill & Sharon

    I always considered Jack a friend and was honored to have known him and to have had many good times playing baseball with him on the Belding Merchants team and fast-pitch softball on the Belding Bears team. Jack was exceptional athletic–BS.

    Posted by: Rick Coon
    I can still see him standing down the third base line. Skiv taught me some valuable life lessons.
    My thoughts are with you Mary and Family.

    Posted by: Daniel Drent

    Mary and family–So sorry for your lost thinking of you and fond memories of Skiv

    Posted by: Beth Albert-Quinley
    I am sorry to hear of the passing of Jack. My thoughts and prayers go out to Mary and the family.

    Posted by: Lisa (Swartz) Curtis
    I was so sorry to hear of your loss. I have some great memories of Jack as a child. My thoughts and prayers are with your family.

    Posted by: Leonard Krueger
    Jack and I taught in Belding for many years but the greatest memories came from when I drove school bus for the softball team. He was not only a coach, but a mentor, father figure, friend and just a pleasant outstanding person. He surely touch the lives of many in a very positive way.

    Thank you Jack for the memories.

    Posted by: Gary Hubbard

    I worked with a lot of good people at Belding schools over my many years. I would put Jack at the top of my list of good, caring people. He was always a gentleman! He loved his family and was a proud grandpa. I will always treasure our times on the golf course. I will miss his smile.

    Posted by: Steven DeKold
    My Uncle Jack will be missed. He was very even tempered man…I knew him as a man of principal. My dad thought of him as a brother. Jack was a great athlete…I always new that about him. My father just passed away in September…They are now at peace…the world is a better place because of them.

    Posted by: Tracy (Venneman) Roundtree
    I was so very sorry to hear of your loss, my thoughts and prayers are with you. I had Mr. Skivington in high school and really enjoyed him as a teacher, he will be sadly missed by all those life’s he touched and enhanced.

    Posted by: Gay Leppink Cole
    Mr. Skivington had a smile that lit the hallways of Belding High School! He encouraged his students to be their best. My sincere sympathy to his family and loved ones.

    Posted by: Larry & Susan Anstett

    So sorry to hear of Jack’s passing. He was a gentleman and always cheerful to visit with. Cherish your memories.

    Posted by: Liz Wilson
    Our prayers are with the family. Both Pat and I had Jack for history in school and have wonderful memories of him. He always carried a smile lifting everyone spirits. He always laughed and teases me (Liz) because I would always sign my papers as LiZ Wilson instead of Liz Smith. In any case our prayers are with all of you.

    Pat and Liz Wilson

    Posted by: Tim and Vicki Christensen

    Mary and Family,

    We are so sorry for your loss. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.

    Posted by: Dave & Kay Gunter
    Very sorry to hear about Jack. He was a great neighbor. I know he touched many lives through his teaching and coaching.

    Posted by: Karie Conklin Clark

    My heart goes out to you Mary, he was such a great person, and will be deeply missed by all.

    Posted by: Ashley Barker
    My thoughts and prayers to Mr. Skivington’s family. He was my teacher in middle school and I loved him. His sense of humor was great and his class was always fun. I will always remember him too because I was in his class Sept 11. I remember him playing the media coverage for us so we could try to understand what was going on… RIP Mr. Skivington

    Posted by: Jim Phipps

    Mr. Skivington was a great man and an excellent teacher. He will be missed. Condolences to his family.

    Posted by: Sherrie Skowron

    Jack you were one of the most caring and loving teachers my daughter had. I am so sorry Mary for your loss he is a great man. You and your family are in our prayers.

    Posted by: Christina Skowron

    Mr. Skivington you were a great teacher I respected you and thought a lot of you. You are a great person. May you now Rest In Peace with the lord.

    Posted by: Roger Westerling
    Skiv you will be missed. Mary you and the kids are in my thoughts and prayers.

    Posted by: Lisa Marhofer

    Just wanted your family to know you are in our prayers. He was an awesome teacher when I was in High School and my sons had him in Middle School,

    Posted by: John Johnson

    Coach Skiv, as I fondly called him, was a fine teacher and even a better human being. He always treated everybody with respect and honesty. You knew he cared just by the tone of his voice or that caring smile that he always seemed to have. When I played softball after high school, he would umpire games in Greenville. He was usually behind the plate, everytime I would come up to bat we would have a moment to reminisce for a minute about high school days, mostly baseball games. What really struck me about Skiv was how much he cared, not only about his current students but the ones like myself who had long since graduated.A man like that doesn’t come around to often. We’ll miss you Skiv, RIP.

    Posted by: Wendi Wood Slosser

    I was so sorry to hear of Jack’s passing. My prayers to you, Mary, and the family!

    Posted by: Daryl Childs
    Mr. Skivington was my baseball coach during my senior year 40 years ago. He was a stickler for preparation and demanded concentration at all times, even during bus rides to games. He taught us that all players, regardless of ability, were an important part of the team. Thank you coach, for all your hard work.

    Posted by: Cara Mendenhall Byrne

    Dear Mary and family,
    I am so sorry about your loss. Jack was a wonderful teacher and man. I was so blessed to have him for a teacher for not only myself, but also for my kids. He was a very wise and thoughtful man. I will pray for you during your time of grief.

    Posted by: Lisa Stanley

    Jack always was a great neighbor! I loved when he would come out and protect me from Muffin!

    My thoughts and prayers are with you all! I am sure my dad met him with a drink up there :). “NIK” and him are having some laughs!

    Posted by: Rich Cole
    Skiv was a good man and a great friend to all his students. I remember his wonderful sense of humor.

    Posted by: Sarah Pregitzer’s
    So sorry to hear of his passing. He was an important part of a truly exceptional high school experience. My sincere condolences to his family and loved ones.

    Posted by: M Susan Tallian

    Jack was one of the finest gentlemen I have ever met. He illustrated respect and character through his own actions. Truly a fine teacher and person, Jack always made the day brighter and more fun for all of us. I was blessed to have known him. Rest in peace, my friend.

    Posted by: Tami Tefft
    My thoughts and prayers are with you all.

    Posted by: Joyce and Bruce Bowling
    We remember all the great times at the Lodge and those famous pancakes and syrup. Jack had such a great smile. He will truly be missed.

    Posted by: leslee hummel-boyd
    Coach was my father figure. . My teacher. My coach.. he was a great person that will be missed. He was and will continue to be a huge impact on my life. See ya later coach….

    Posted by: Ann Dunlop

    Jack was a wonderful colleague at Belding Middle School. He was admired and respected by staff and loved by his students.

    Posted by: Jamie Yonker

    Thank you, Uncle Jack for everything (including special popcorn). You will be remembered as a joy in my life and many others.

    My prayers are with you all.


    Posted by: Don & Dawn
    Our thoughts and prayers are with you at this time.

    Don and Dawn

    Posted by: Pauline Jones will be missed. Thanks for all the good softball coaching memories. Those girls adored you.

    Posted by: Sara Black
    So sorry to hear of Mr. Skivington’s passing. I had him as an eighth grade social studies teacher and really enjoyed his class. Your family will be in my prayers.

    Posted by: Darin Syrjala
    Didn’t know Skiv long, but in the short time I did, I quickly learned that he was one of the good ones! Enjoyed his presence at many birthday parties and get togethers. My kids will all miss Grandpa Skiv!

    Posted by: Mikayla Linebaugh

    Thanks for all the memories in both basketball and softball. I always remember your favorite saying: no pain, no gain, no phone call….Love ya and tell my dad hello.


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