Life Story Celebration
Sunday, October 1, 2023
3:00 PM to 5:00 PM EDT
Betzler Life Story Funeral Homes
6080 Stadium Drive
Kalamazoo, MI 49009
Where food, drinks and stories will be shared.
Life Story Service
At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.
Make A Wish Foundation
Bronson Children's Hospital
Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.
Life Story / Obituary
Loving, caring, and kind, Marian Haskamp lived a life rich in family and friends. A woman who embraced every moment as a gift and each person as a friend, Marian was an inspiration to all who were blessed to know her. Marian devoted her life to ensuring her loved ones were well cared for and never hesitated to give all she could to make life better for others. Despite a stubborn streak and never arriving on time, Marian led with her heart in all things and always made sure people knew how special they were to her. A wonderful wife, mother, grandmother, and friend, Marian was cherished by many and will long be remembered.
1948 proved a year of continued celebration of the end of World War II. As America's heroes eagerly returned home, a renewed spirit and hope filled the air. American prosperity grew like no other time in our history. The Greatest Generation soon proliferated, creating the age of the Baby Boomers. For the Estes family, the cause for celebration grew even greater as they welcomed their daughter Marian on December 10 in Kalamazoo, Michigan.
Growing up in Kalamazoo, Marian enjoyed the company of her brothers; one brother was older, the other younger than her. A humble home, Marian's father was an electrician, and her mother was a housewife. Marian shared a close relationship with her paternal grandmother and took care of her brothers, buying them birthday and Christmas presents. Naturally creative, Marian loved art and sewing her own clothes. She attended Comstock schools and graduated in 1967.
While babysitting with a girlfriend, Marian met the love of her life, Tony Haskamp, when he and a buddy visited. Marian took one look at the big brown eyes and jumped in the front seat where Tony was driving. Her girlfriend wasn't too happy about it. Tony couldn't help but notice Marian, who was good-looking and had a very nice figure. Marian was 16, and Tony was 17 and a senior at Loy Norrix High School. The pair were soon dating steadily. With their hearts set on sharing the future, the couple married on June 29, 1968, at St. Joseph Church.
After honeymooning on Mackinaw Island, the newlyweds settled in Kalamazoo. In 1970, Marian and Tony started a family by adopting Tony Jr., who was only a few months old. Veronica, Sarah, and David followed with natural births. While Tony owned a painting company that his dad started, City Painting, and later ran it with his brother Joe, Marian devoted herself to staying home with her kids. She loved being a homemaker and totally embodied the role. She made lunch for Tony every day, dinner was ready at 5 pm every night, the house was clean, she sewed costumes for the kids, never missed a game, and often had fresh after-school cookies waiting for her kids. She was the mom every kid should have had.
Marian's brothers were motorcycle cops in Virginia, and in the late 80's, she wanted to be a cop, too. Fulfilling her goal, she was a police officer in Hartford for three years. She rode with another female officer and absolutely loved it; however, with parenting responsibilities, the job proved to be quite a lot.
When her family grew to include grandchildren, Marian enthusiastically embraced her role as grandmother. Her grandkids all called her MiMi. In time, her friends called her MiMi, too. Marian enjoyed singing You Are My Sunshine to the kids and always told them how much she loved them. She spoiled the grandkids to pieces, and their parents' rules went out the window as soon as she arrived. She did the best with her grandkids. She helped raise Bruce and Christopher, and raising Little Tony or better known at “TT” was its own endeavor, too. Marian was happiest when her home was always busy with kids and activities.
A big fan of holidays, Marian lived for Halloween. She loved the holiday's customs and decorating the house, earning her the seasonal nickname "Witch," which she fully embraced. Marian and Tony made a tradition of dressing up as Mr. and Mrs. Claus for almost ten years at Christmas. They both loved it. They dressed up for their daughter-in-law's daycare and the Village of Vicksburg. She and Tony also enjoyed going out to dinner, Bronner's Christmas Store for annual shopping trips, antiquing, and Shipshewana.
Most content being a homebody, Marian enjoyed the simple things in life. She loved the home she and Tony created in Vicksburg, that showcased much of Tony's specially-made furniture. She also loved holding babies, cooking, baking, and having Tony wrap his arm around her on the porch swing. Homemade chocolate chip cookies, blueberry pie, and peanut butter cookies were just a few of her specialties. She made the best pie crust; her dad taught her. She delighted in taking kids to McDonald's, relishing her sweet iced tea, and ended every message to her grandkids "Love MiMi" with lots of emojis. While Marian thoroughly enjoyed a trip to Alaska, she was always ready to come home and see her family after being away.
Sadly, Marian recently experienced a lot of health problems that required hospitalization. Ultimately, the decision to either keep up treatment to delay her death for a few weeks or go home had to be made. She chose the latter. Her final days were spent surrounded by all her loved ones. She was never left alone and felt enveloped by love as she passed peacefully at her home on Wednesday, September 27th, in the early morning.
Though life feels far less certain in the absence of Marian's steadfast love and companionship, may we find comfort in our many treasured memories. May we also find comfort in the honor of carrying her beautiful legacy forward. In each moment we cherish time with loved ones, enjoy baking or sipping on a sweet tea, decorate our homes for the holidays, and share a porch swing with our beloved, we celebrate the many ways Marian made the world a better place. In this way, we keep her joyful spirit alive while inspiring others as she so inspired us.
Marian was preceded by her daughter, Veronica in 1997; her brother, David Estes, and her parents. Surviving are her husband of 55 years, Tony Haskamp; 3 children: Tony Jr. "TT” Haskamp," Sarah (Ryan) Rork, and Dave (Mary) Haskamp; 10 grandchildren: Bruce Manley, Christopher Smith, Annalisa Dalla, Veronica Haskamp, Hunter Haskamp, Riddock Rork, twins: Everett and Easton Haskamp, Paisley Haskamp and Vivien Rork; brother, Clarence "Rick" Estes, many in-laws, nieces, and nephews. Please join us at a Life Story Celebration where food, drinks and stories will be shared on Sunday, (OCT 1) from 3-5PM at Betzler Life Story Funeral Homes, 6080 Stadium Drive, Kalamazoo, MI 49009 (269) 375-2900 where services will be held Monday (OCT 2) at 11AM. Burial will follow at Mt. Olivet Cemetery. Visit Marian’s webpage at BetzlerLifeStory.com to archive favorite memories, photos, and sign her guestbook. Memorial contributions may be made to: Make A Wish Foundation or Bronson Children's Hospital.