Richard A. "Rich" Hemker
On Monday, October 14th, 2019, Richard (Rich) Alan Hemker, loving Husband, Father and Grandfather passed away at home at the age of 67. Rich was born on May 7th, 1952 in Saginaw, Michigan to the late Wellman and Edwina (Ebenhoeh) Hemker. On September 29th, 1973, Rich married the love of his life, Jacquelyn Kelbey of Montrose, MI. Together, they were blessed with one daughter, Janel Hemker and worked together to raise her to be a loving and selfless representation of their family. In December of 1984 he received his Journeyman’s Card in Machine Repair and worked for Delphi Chassis where he retired in 2006. After his retirement, Rich continued to work as a Contractor for Delphi and is known by his friends and co-workers as, “the best Machine Repairman in the plant.”
Rich had many passions. You could always find him in his garage working on his project of the day and waiting for his opportunity to display his quick wit and dry sense of humor. He loved playing cards, hunting, golfing, working on his cars and fixing all of the things that his son in-law had recently broken and could not fix himself. He loved helping others and volunteered for the MS Society. He also gave blood and platelets as much as he was able. Rich was an Usher at Holy Spirit Catholic Church and was the first in line to help others in need and never asked for anything in return. Rich was a perfectionist if there ever was one and a gift to all who knew him. But with all of the things Rich loved, nothing could take the place of his wife, daughter, son in-law David Murdoch and two grandsons, Landon and Grayson Murdoch. Although he was a man of very few words, Rich never missed a phone call from any of the above and never missed the opportunity to tell them that he loved them.
Rich is survived by his wife, Jackie, daughter, Janel (Hemker) Murdoch, son in-law, David Murdoch, grandsons, Landon and Grayson Murdoch, twin brother, Rob (Karen) Hemker, brothers Jim (Cathy) Hemker, Doug (Mary) Hemker, sister, Marlene (Joe) Jungerheld, sisters in-law, Betty Hemker, Betty Blaine, Sandy (Jerry) Mose, brother in-law, Shannon Kelbey (Pat Gray) and many nieces and nephews that he loved individually. He was preceded in death by his father, Wellman, his mother, Edwina, father and mother in-law, Jack and Shirley Kelbey, his brother, Don and brothers in-law, Jack Kelbey and Harold Blaine.
A funeral liturgy will take place at 11:00 a.m. on Friday, October 18, 2019, at Holy Spirit Catholic Church, 1035 N. River Road. Rev. Fr. Peter J. Gaspeny will officiate. Friends are welcome to visit with the family at the W. L. Case and Company Funeral Chapel, 201 N. Miller Road on Thursday from 1:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. A vigil service will be held at 7:00 p.m. on Thursday evening. Richard will lie in state at the church on Friday from 10:00 a.m. until the time of Mass. Rite of Committal will take place at 2:30 p.m. at Montrose Township Cemetery.