James Michael Dean, 61, died December 11, 2019 in the early morning hours at his home in Mears after a hard-fought battle with cancer. He was finally able to lay his gloves down and be released from his pain. A larger than life man, to know him was to love him, and although we are going to miss him immensely, there’s comfort knowing he’s bringing joy and laughter to his new home in heaven.
James Dean was born January 10, 1958 in Hart, Michigan to Fred and Mabel Dean. His childhood was filled with countless gatherings of family and cousins. Long, fun-filled hours were spent exploring Deans Hill, creating life-long bonds that extended far and wide. As a young man, he married Karla Wadel and in that marriage they had three beautiful boys, whom he cherished most and was so proud of their accomplishments. Over the years, he became the well-respected and deeply loved owner of Dean Oil Company. He was also the owner of the Frontier Market in Stony Lake. In later years, he dedicated himself to his work through Peterson Farms, a job he loved doing. He was an avid snowmobiler, a die hard Broncos Fan, and the very best friend, uncle, son, nephew, brother, papa, and dad you could ever meet. Always a gentleman, his love of animals, in particular his dog Brody and his cat Eddy, only further demonstrated his kind-spirited nature. His constant companion over the years, LuAnn Mitteer, whom he lovingly called his LuLu, enjoyed life to the fullest together and made lasting memories.
He is survived by his companion, LuAnn Mitteer. His children, Jessie (Amanda) Dean, Garan Dean, and Galvin Dean. His grandchildren, Aiden, Ava, and Owen Dean. His sister Lynn (Tim) Collins and brothers Mike (Bonnie) Dean, Rex (Marla) Dean, Pat Dean, Randy (Joshua) Dean, and David Dean. He had many nieces and nephews whom they all claim as their favorite.
Visitation will be held Friday, December 13th at the Harris Funeral Home in Shelby Michigan from 6-8 pm. The funeral is Saturday December 14th at 11:00 am at the same location. Upon Jim’s request, memorials may be made to the Crystal Valley Care Fund, P.O. Box 451, Hart, MI 49420.
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