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Barbara Jean (Wendt) "Barb" Rogers

Barbara Jean (Wendt) "Barb" Rogers
  • April 21, 1928 - February 23, 2018
  • Kalamazoo, Michigan

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“so sorry for your loss. Prayers for comfort and peace for you and your family. God bless ”
1 of 4 | Posted by: Gerald and Mary Jo Griffin and family - KY

“Mary and family, so sorry to hear of the loss of your mother. May your fond memories see you through this difficult time.Sincerely,Steff and Joe...Read More »
2 of 4 | Posted by: A friend

“Patty...I know what it means to lose your Mom...a very important part of you is gone...but our Mom's are always with us! So sorry I won't be able to...Read More »
3 of 4 | Posted by: carol bartholomew bartholomew - MI

“So sorry for your loss Mary. ”
4 of 4 | Posted by: Larry Collier - Kalamaxoo, MI

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Barbara Jean (Wendt) Rogers of Kalamazoo, MI

Barb, age 89, died Friday morning, February 23, 2018 at Bronson Methodist Hospital, Kalamazoo.

Barb was born on April 21, 1928 in Hope Township, Midland County, to Gordon and Nina (Howe) Wendt. She graduated from Midland High School, Class of 1945. On September 20, 1947 she was married to Robert W. (Buck) Rogers in Midland, MI.

She was preceded in death by her father in 1949, mother and brother, Leo Wendt, in 1991, and husband, Buck, in 2003. She is survived by three daughters, Nancy Rogers, Pat Sportell, and Mary (Ward) Vanderberg, all of Kalamazoo; 5 grandchildren, Kristen (Mark) Roberts, Jill (Scott) Hengst, Chelsea (Brian) Haske, Megan (Greg) Scholten, and Michael VanBuskirk; and 6 great-grandchildren, Gavin Roberts, Kolten and Breanna Hengst, Easton and Liam Haske, and Greyson Scholten.

Barb was a secretary for 45 years. While working at the Midland Daily News in 1946, she met Buck, who was a news photographer, and they were married the following year. Once they relocated to Kalamazoo in July 1963, and being a bit ahead of her time, she started a home-based Secretarial Service in 1965 transcribing for court reporters in the Kalamazoo area, until 1976. The neighbors knew she was hard at work hearing the rat-a-tat of the typewriter coming from her home office, and the kids knew not to bother her unless it was a dire emergency. After 11 years at home, she decided to take a different path and began her career at The Upjohn Company where she worked for 13 years, retiring in 1990 as an Executive Secretary.

Having been raised on a farm, Barb was an excellent cook and enjoyed cooking for her family and friends, many times welcoming those that didn't have a place for a holiday dinner. You were always welcome in her home and at her table. The basement "fruit room" was always filled with canned fruit, vegetables, relish, pickles, and most anything else that could be canned. She loved to bake and it was a tradition to make her cut out, frosted white sugar cookies (from her mother's recipe) for any holiday that had a cookie cutter, first with her children, and then with her grandchildren. This was one of her favorite activities as a Mom and Grandma. She enjoyed bowling in several women's bowling leagues, learned to golf after retirement, volunteering at Borgess Hospital, and loved to sew, knit, especially mittens for her children, grandchildren, and to donate, and crochet. Many family sofas were adorned at one time or another with her beautiful afghans. For a time in the late 70's, she and Buck owned and ran a food truck named The Lunch Box, aka the "weenie wagon", going to auctions and horse shows serving up hot dogs, brats, chips, and pop. She had a true entrepreneurial spirit. Barb was directionally gifted and had the travel bug so she and Buck traveled to many places in the U.S. in their various motorhomes, spending a couple of winters in Texas and a few in Florida, finding many friends along the way. Her favorite place at home was her screened in porch. She and Buck built it in 1969 and it was later renovated to its current design. She spent many hours there enjoying the birds and backyard wildlife.

The Memorial Service to celebrate Barb's life will be held on Wednesday, February 28th at 11:00 a.m. at the Voyage Church, 6339 Atlantic Avenue, Kalamazoo 49009, with the Rev. Wes Tillett, officiating. Barb's life celebration will continue with a time of visitation, fellowship and a luncheon immediately following the Service in the Church's Community Room. Private, family burial next to her beloved husband, Buck was held in Mount Ever-Rest Memorial Gardens, Kalamazoo. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in Barb's honor may be directed to the charity of one's choice. Farley Estes Dowdle Funeral Home & Cremation Care, Richland Chapel is assisting Barb's family.