Tuesday, May 1, 2018
4:00 PM EDT
Betzler Life Story Funeral Homes
6080 Stadium Drive
Kalamazoo, MI 49009
A reception will follow the service in the Life Story Center.
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.
7600 Grand River Ave #175
Brighton, MI 48114
Bronson Children's Hospital
601 John Street
Kalamazoo, MI 49007
Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.
Life Story / Obituary
Although he was taken from his loved ones much too soon, Ethan Fox was a special gift to everyone he met. He was strong and courageous with a humble and gentle spirit that was such an inspiration. Ethan treasured times spent with family and friends, and he was always very present in the moment. He was never one to let things worry him, and his zest for life and perpetual smile were contagious to all who were near. Life will never be the same without Ethan here, but he leaves behind a priceless collection of memories that his loved ones will forever hold near and dear to their hearts.
It was as the beauty of spring unfolded in Kalamazoo, Michigan, in May of 2002 that Matthew and Liana Fox were eagerly anticipating the birth of their new baby. The big day finally arrived on May 27th when the baby boy they named Ethan Brandt drew his first breath. He was raised in the family home alongside his older sister, Kenzie, and this was the only home he ever knew. Even as a baby Ethan had a laid back personality as nothing fazed him, and he always had a big smile. A mother’s dream, he also liked taking naps as a baby.
From his earliest years, Ethan was a bustle of activity. He started playing soccer when he was four, and he was quite a talented player. Ethan was solid and consistent, and he played for AYSO, Kalamazoo Soccer Club and Loy Norrix high school. His dad was his soccer coach for a few years and shared the love of the game. Ethan liked Star Wars and super hero movies, and he especially enjoyed watching movies with his mom. Ethan liked reading as a young boy, and second only to soccer was his love for watching cooking shows and trying new food. He could often be found watching cooking videos on YouTube, and although steak was his favorite Ethan had more recently found he enjoyed sushi and lemon gelato.
In the 15 years he was given, Ethan crammed a ton of life into them. He loved spending time at the family cottage on Lake Huron with all of his Fox cousins at least once or twice every year. They had so much fun just hanging out on the beach, taking innertube rides on the boat and putting on shows for the aunts and uncles. He attended Camp Wakeshma for several years and won the Corey Cup sail boat race twice, the second time with only one arm. Through Make a Wish, Ethan and his family went to London to see a Chelsea Soccer game. Between Ethan and his sister, they knew all the players and teams, since Saturday mornings found them watching games together. Both Ethan and his sister were thrilled to get to meet all of the players while on their trip. He also traveled to plenty of other places including a trip to Europe with his grandfather in 2015, Disney World, Belize with all of the Foxes, Aruba in the winters with the TenHarmsels, Yellowstone National Park, Washington DC and San Francisco. Although he loved travel and adventure, he knew his limits and stood by them. He attended Winchell Elementary School and Maple Street Jr. High, where he performed in three plays, three musicals, and played bass in the orchestra. He had tons of friends and made a huge impression on everyone he met as a student at Loy Norrix High School. When it came to music, Ethan enjoyed a variety of things from the Beatles to cheesy eighties pop.
Ethan and his family were given a tough pill to swallow when he was diagnosed with osteosarcoma about one and a half years ago. He took it all in stride and even managed to find a way to keep playing video games after his arm was amputated as his aunt was able to find a modified x-box controller with foot controls. Ethan didn’t want to be treated any differently and said that he didn’t want to be called brave since this battle wasn't something he chose to do.
All who knew Ethan Fox would agree that he was the heartbeat of wherever he went. He had an amazing sense of humor that he used to lighten the load for everyone else and also carried him through the rough times. Ethan was mature and wise beyond his years with a positive attitude no matter the circumstances around him. Deeply loved, he will be forever missed.
Ethan Brandt Fox, of Kalamazoo, died peacefully April 27, 2018. Ethan’s family includes his parents, Matthew and Liana Fox; sister, Kenzie Fox; grandparents: Larry and Mieke TenHarmsel and Jon and Nancy Fox; and many aunts, uncles, cousins and friends. Cremation will take place. Visit with family on Monday from 4-7 p.m. at Betzler Life Story Funeral Home, 6080 Stadium Dr. Kalamazoo (269) 375-2900 where services will be held Tuesday at 4 p.m. followed by a reception in the Life Story Center. Please visit Ethan’s personal web page at www.betzlerfuneralhome.com, where you can archive a favorite memory or photo and sign his online guestbook before coming to the funeral home. Memorial contributions may be made to Make-a-Wish Michigan or Bronson Children’s Hospital.