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William Otis Castelein

March 4, 1934 ~ March 24, 2019 (age 85)

Loved ones remember Bill always having a quick project that needed doing just before he needed to head out. Particularly, Sunday mornings before church, which drove his wife bonkers. Sunday, March 24, 2019 was no exceptions. You see, Bill decided he needed to run out and put tags on his boat. Moments after finishing his last quick task, Bill closed the door to his earthly home for the final time and stepped into his heavenly home for the first (running predictably later then Martha’s schedule).

William Otis (“Bill/Lumpy”) Castelein, 85, passed up March 24, 2019. Reuniting with the most beautiful woman he had ever met, Martha, with whom he enjoyed 62 years of marriage. Bill was born on “command day”, March 4, 1934, to the late Nial & Dorothy Castelein. He was preceded in death by his parents Nial & Dorothy Castelein, brother Ron Castelein, father and mother-in-law, Maurice C. & Leah Ruth (Miller) Harper and brother-in-law Charles Harper.   

Bill was born in Hastings, Michigan where he attended and graduated Hastings High School, then began work at the Bliss. He went on to serve his country before attending MSU, proud to boast a straight A (one course) record. From this, a die hard, unwavering MSU fan was born. After college Bill picked back up at EW Bliss, where he would spend more than 40 years, right up to retirement. Shortly after retirement (or perhaps long after an endless honey-do list) Bill began working as a driver with the Auto Auctions.

Although he was a dedicated employee, Bill would rather talk about the things he loved; Michigan State. Obviously. Camping with his family and friends, shushing his kids and grandkids while fishing, golfing and bowling in several leagues, torturing anyone who rode in his car with sports radio, the good stuff. Bill is remembered as having a memory as sharp as a tack..when it came to every shot, of every hole, of every course he’d ever played a round of golf on. His son remembers using VIP tickets, won by his mother, to attend a Pistons game. Little did the two of them know just how VIP they would be that day. After being escorted through the halls of the stadium, walking side by side with the players, they were shown to their seats. Floor seats! So close to the action in fact, they had to tuck their toes to avoid the players feet. He recalls two things very clearly from that day. The first, how unbelievably small his father looked walking beside professional basketball players. And secondly, how poised his father seemed, when he must have been feeling overwhelmingly excited inside. This is a trait all of his children recount as they entered adulthood; his ability to be quiet. To listen. To hear their troubles. Both Bill and Martha were always willing to listen, slow to advice, quick to pray. “A moral compass that always pointed north”

Accepting Christ as his Savior as a teenager, Bill became a long time member of First Baptist Church of Middleville, MI. There he served on the Missionary Committee, alongside his wife, for many years, while also attending to the library. Within this community Bill and Martha formed lifelong friendships. Both could be predictably found at church campouts, picnics, potlucks,outings and softball games, at which he pitched for many years. Many things can be said about Bill and Martha, but what strikes many, was their unwavering generosity, joyful spirits, wonderful laughs and love for family and Christ.

William is survived by his four children; Nancy (Dave) Henson, Hastings, MI; Faith (Dan) Bianchi, Middleville, MI; James (Gloria) Castelein, Wayland, MI; and John Castelein, Hastings, MI; His 17 grandchildren; Katie VanBuskirk, Kristen (Nathan) DeBoer, Pamela (Jason) Rubert, Harper Castelein, Elaine Bianchi, Jessica Foote(Jeffrey Dickenson), Truly Bianchi, Abigail (Bradley) Keeler, Kellie Foote, Jorge (Maria) Mesa, Jacob (Felipe) Foote, Ana (Ramiro) Mesa, James Poirrier, Liveah Foote, Mattea Castelein, Osvaldo Rosiles and Abram Jimenez. As well as his 22 great grandchildren; Jordan, Tucker, Peyton & Chayse VanBuskirk, Joselyn, Elise & Case DeBoer, Lilian & Grace Rubert, Andrew Barendse, Charlie Foote, Adelyn & Anna Dickenson, Owen, Finley and Makenna Keeler, Addison & Ella Poirrier and Sofia, Amaris and Caleb Mesa. He is also survived by sister Peggy (Don) Goldsworthy and sister-in-laws Fern Harper & Sue Castelein, as well as a multitude of loving family and friends.

Visitation will be held at 11am on Saturday, April 13, 2019, funeral to follow beginning at 12pm, at First Baptist Church of Middleville, MI. We invite you to join us for a luncheon following the service. Donations can be made to the First Baptist Church Missionary Fund.

Donations may be made to:

First Baptist Church - Missionary Fund
5215 M-37, Middleville MI 49333
Tel: 1-269-795-9726

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