James Harvey “Ike” Hall

James Harvey “Ike” Hall, 82, of Decatur, Onaway, and Richland Township, passed away Wednesday, January 2, 2019, at his residence. 

He was preceded in death by his mother, Charlotte; father, James; stepmother, Mary; stepbrothers, Howard and John Brigham; and stepsisters Peggy Tweety and Betty Keeler. 

Ike is survived by two brothers, John (Gail) Hall and William (Barbara) Hall; a stepbrother, Bob (Sandy) Brigham; wife and best friend of almost 60 years, Marjorie “Marge” (Anderson); children, James (Veronica) Hall, Kenneth (Mary Lou) Hall, Timothy (Tiffany) Hall, Michael (Anne Crowley) Hall, Thomas (Lindsey) Hall and Kathleen Hall; 16 grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren. 

Ike grew up in Decatur where he attended Decatur Public Schools. His family was well-known and well-liked in the area. While growing up, he spent time fishing, hunting and trapping. He played football and basketball in high school and was class president, among other endeavors. Ike graduated in 1954 and planned on becoming a mining engineer at Houghton College. After a year in college, he decided to enter the United States Navy. In 1955, Ike became a crew member on the USS Essex (CVA-9) where he was a dental assistant for three years. His fourth year in the Navy was spent on the USS Tidewater, a submarine tender. 

It was during his military service that Ike and Marge were engaged. Ike married Marge August 29, 1959, after he left the service. They lived in Kalamazoo, where he and Marge completed their degrees in teaching at Western Michigan University. His first job was as a mathematics and science teacher in Decatur. He accepted a position in Onaway in 1964, where he taught math and science and later served as middle school principal, athletic director and superintendent – occasionally serving in multiple positions at the same time. 

Ike and Marge lived in Onaway for 54 years, and Ike was well-known and respected by generations of students. It was not uncommon for Ike to teach the grandchildren of former students. He also served in the fire and ambulance departments, and on various community boards and committees. In 1984, he and Marge moved to nearby Black Lake where they settled, retired, and thoroughly enjoyed visits from grandchildren, relatives, and friends. 

They also hosted many family gatherings, including a traditional family reunion every Fourth of July. They moved to Richland Township in the summer of 2018 to be closer to family and friends in southern Michigan.


A celebration of Ike’s life took place January 6 at Newell Chapel, 83313 M51, Decatur, with the rosary being recited followed by a time of sharing and gathering. Mass of Christian burial took place January 7, at St. Ambrose Catholic Church, 1628 E G Ave., Parchment. 

A private burial will take place at a later date at Lakeside Cemetery, Decatur. Memorial contributions may be made to Hospice Care of Southwest Michigan, 222 N. Kalamazoo Mall, Suite 100, Kalamazoo, MI, 49008. 

Those wishing to leave an online condolence may do so at www.newellchapel.com.