Thomas R.  VanOchten

Thomas R. VanOchten

1938 - 2018

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Obituary of Thomas R. VanOchten

Thomas R. VanOchten, 80, of Hampton Twp., our caring, loving, and sometimes particular husband, father, grandfather, brother, uncle, and friend was born into eternal life on Wednesday, September 12, 2018 at Bay Medical Care Facility.  Tom was born in Bay County on July 17, 1938, the son of the late William and Marie (Huskins) VanOchten. Through mutual connections, he came to know the former Theola Stagray. They started dating when Tom was 16, and after six years were united in marriage on April 23, 1960. Tom was a lifelong farmer and also retired from Bosco Food Service in 2000. He formerly worked for Simon Brothers and was a member of the Teamsters Union. In his spare time, Tom enjoyed fishing, hunting, Euchre, trips to the casino, following the Detroit Tigers and Lions, and listening and watching Mollie B. Polka. He was a faithful parishioner of St. Jude Thaddeus Parish and the Knights of Columbus, Council #2740, along with the St. John's Funeral Luncheon Committee and League of Catholic Women & Men. Tom was a staple at the K of C Friday Fish Fry, where he was known for his famous fried potatoes. He could also be seen around town helping with meals on wheels deliveries.  Tom leaves to carry on his legacy, his devoted wife of 58 years, Theola and their children: Thomas R. VanOchten, Jr. (Deborah), Jill M. Miller (Max), and Timothy L. VanOchten (Tamara). He was the most wonderful and supportive grandfather of Kimberly VanOchten (Daniel Standish), Amanda Lancaster, Kristina VanOchten, Megan Miller, Max T. Miller, Thomas (Zeke) VanOchten, Kari VanOchten, and Brooke VanOchten and the great-grandpa of Emmalei and Steven Standish and Jordyn Lancaster. Also surviving are his siblings, Rita Stagray, Gabriel VanOchten (Marilyn Jacobson), Patricia Rosolowski (Vincent), and Marlene Weihl (Edward), along with many nieces and nephews.  In addition to his parents, Tom was welcomed home to heaven by his siblings, Vern, Vincent, Gerald, and James VanOchten, and his in-laws, Harold Stagray and Margot VanOchten.  Tom's family will be present to receive visitors on Sunday, September 16, 2018 from 2:00 PM until 8:00 PM with a 7:00 PM Vigil for Tom at Skorupski Family Funeral Home & Cremation Services, 955 N. Pine Rd., Hampton Twp. On Monday, September 17, 2018, Tom will be taken to St. Jude Thaddeus Parish (St. John the Evangelist Church), 614 Pine St., Essexville, where visiting will continue from 9:00 AM until his 10:00 AM Funeral Liturgy. Fr. Dale Orlik will officiate with the Rite of Committal to follow in St. Patrick Cemetery. The entire family wishes to extend a heartfelt thanks to Bay Medical Care Facility for their compassionate care. Memorial contributions may be directed to Bay Medical Care Facility. Expressions of sympathy may be shared with the family online at