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Mavadell “Mava” Elizabeth (Morton) Maertz, age 89, of Holland, Michigan, passed away peacefully on Friday, July 7, 2023.  She was born May 17, 1934, in Sutton, West Virginia, to the late Joseph and Nina (McClung) Morton.

Mava was a lifelong thrifter and antiques collector who enjoyed selling her finds in antique malls and in her very own Sack’s Thrift Avenue. Her legendary interior decorating skills and love of real estate lead to a fulfilling career helping people find the perfect home. Her own home was always a showpiece for the time and wowed guests with style and beauty. When she was ready for a change, she would start projects with abandon, sometimes knocking down walls before setting the table for dinner. She was an amazing cook, spending time feeding people, catering, crafting award winning recipes and eventually owning Did’s Deli in Grand Haven, Michigan, where she raised the bar on deli salads and sandwiches. She couldn’t turn down a gorgeous blouse and always looked her best no matter what the occasion. Some of her proudest accomplishments revolved around her work for news sources, from her days as a teletype operator at United Press International, where she met her first husband Hal, to the time she spent interviewing local celebrities and writing articles for publication. Her creativity and energy flowed to all around her.

In her early life, Mava modeled for local Charleston, West Virginia agencies and often found herself in the pages of the newspaper or in ads for area businesses.  She was a true beauty and enjoyed the occasional pageant title. Mava was known for her quick wit and humor which made instant friends wherever she went. She was always ready to discuss current politics, play a round of bingo or join a game of poker.

Her family was important to her. Her children were the light of her life. She maintained close relationships with her siblings, nephews and nieces throughout her lifetime. She was proud of her grandchildren and their accomplishments.

Survivors include her four children, Kelli (William) Parrott, Kerri (Tim) Ressmeyer, Todd (Jody) Maertz, and Randy (Lori Daly) Maertz; grandchildren, Chelsea, Cady and Taylor; step-grandchildren, Emma and Ethan; siblings, Joe (Dolly) Morton, Jim (Patty) Morton, Ken (Kathy) Morton, and John (Tammy) Morton; and sister-in-law, Peggy Morton.

Mava was preceded in death by her parents; her sister, Regina (Eugene) Angle; and her brother, Glen Morton.

Per her wishes cremation has taken place and her remains will be buried in a private ceremony at Cunningham Memorial Park in St. Albans, West Virginia. No service is planned.

Our thanks to the staff at Resthaven Maple Woods who befriended and cared for Mava, ensuring that her last years were full of laughter and smiles.

To send a message of sympathy to the family, sign Mava’s online guest book, or to share a favorite memory, please visit:

Cremation arrangements were entrusted to Michigan Cremation & Funeral Care, Grand Rapids, 616-452-3006.


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7 Condolences

  1. Sandy Whitesides on July 14, 2023 at 7:12 pm

    I am so devastated. Aunt Mava and I became very close a few years before her death. We would talk on Facebook and call each other. She was a gem. My dad always compared me to his sister, Mava. We had the same talents and same careers and sense of humor. Dad always thought I looked like her when she was younger. Aunt Mava & I discovered this connection between us as we talked at the last family reunion. I will miss her a lot. But my personal memory of her and our journey to become bonded as family and familiar characteristics will always be remembered. ❤️😢

  2. Stacey Carpin on September 17, 2023 at 9:40 pm

    Just the thought of Mava made & makes me smile! What a flamboyant woman with class & Sas! I loved Mava’s style. She wore cheetah, leopard & zebra prints regularly. Wow, she liked to show her wild side. You would know even in her 80’s she drove around in a bright yellow car. Mava looked like she was driving like lightning. She would give people a bolt of it too with her hilarious & forthcoming comments. I managed the place Mava lived for part of her later years & in an apartment complex of many personalities & vigor Mava shined like no other! Mava I loved you so much & will treasure you as I have since the first day I met you.

    Your friend & ex property manager,


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