Life Story Visitation
Mass of Christian Burial
Friday, October 29, 2021
11:00 AM EDT
St. Joseph Catholic Church
936 Lake Street
Kalamazoo, MI 49001
The family will receive friends one hour prior to Mass at the church.
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.
St. Joseph Catholic Church
936 Lake Street
Kalamazoo, MI 49001
Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.
Life Story / Obituary
John Moore was a kind, pleasant, hard-working, and easy-going man. He was a loving husband and father. Everyone he met has a special memory about John and were always drawn to his kind and laid-back personality. John was known for having his own opinions, being a dedicated worker, and wanting to help others. He was optimistic about his life, and will be missed by many, especially by his loving family and friends.
The 1950s are arguably some of the most nostalgic years in US history. The decade was an important time for civil rights in America. For example, on May 17, 1954, the US Supreme Court ruled that separate schools for black and white students were inherently unequal and unconstitutional in Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka. Then, on December 1, 1955, Rosa Parks famously refused to give up her bus seat for a white passenger. In 1959, the US gained it’s final two states: Alaska and Hawaii. For parents, Truman & Agnes (Ott) Moore, April 2, 1953, was a wonderful day as they welcomed their fifth child, John. Being the youngest of five meant that there was always an abundance of playmates growing up. John was lovingly welcomed by his four older siblings: Joan, Robert, James, and Daniel. Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, John never had the chance to make many friends growing up because the family moved around quite a bit (at least ten times) because of their father’s job promotions. Truman was a supervisor at the Post Office and Agnes was a homemaker while taking care of her family.
Growing up John had many interests. He loved sports and spent his time water skiing, snow skiing, golfing, playing tennis, baseball, and going fishing. When John started Kindergarten, he took the bus to school and then proceeded to get off the bus and run all the way home! He helped at his parents’ home and repaired anything that needed to be fixed. When his parents moved to Michigan, John began his college education at Michigan State University and stayed in the dormitories. One of the memorable moments when he started MSU was having Tim Allen as a roommate for a short time! John owned a motorcycle for a year, which he enjoyed riding for short distances around Michigan. Ultimately, John ended up graduating from MSU with a B.S. in Forestry. He then went on to obtain a B.S. in Finance from Oakland University and an M.A. in Business Administration from Wayne State University.
John worked most of his life in the banking field. Although, one of his first jobs was working at Radio Shack which he greatly enjoyed. He was employed in Detroit for banks that are now owned by PNC Bank. John held a Vice President position in the mortgage department at Manufacturer’s Bancorp which eventually was named Security Bancorp. Once Security Bancorp was purchased by First of America, John moved to Kalamazoo in order to keep his position. He remained the VP in the mortgage department until 1998 when First America was bought by National City Bank, and he was laid off. His next job was in finance at Pfizer in the Animal Health Building in Richland, MI. In 2003, he was laid off from Pfizer and started work at National City Bank in a much lower paid position. Unfortunately, in 2006, John was once again laid off due to the elimination of his department. For several years thereafter, he held other positions at various places until his diagnosis of Alzheimer’s in 2013.
With John’s parents living in Whitehall for several years before moving to New York, John was able to take several trips to visit them and participate in activities like boating, skiing, and swimming on White Lake and Lake Michigan. During his 20’s and 30’s John was involved as a Big Brother for three boys. He had a particularly special relationship with a boy named Bradley. John would take him to the movies and play sports with him. Bradley quickly became John’s favorite “little brother”. Eventually, Bradley became Best Man for John at his wedding in 1994.
Karen Westrick, John’s wife, was the love of his life from the moment they first met in 1993 through the Datelines Ad in the Kalamazoo Gazette. The Datelines Ad was like dating apps nowadays. Karen had received 23 responses through the Dateline Ad in the paper and John’s message was the third one that Karen listened to. Karen said that for some reason she just knew she could trust him when she talked to him on the phone. She asked him to come by her apartment to pick her up for their first date. When John knocked on her door, he stood holding a dozen roses. The pair went to dinner at Clara’s restaurant in Battle Creek. On their way home, Karen asked John to drive around Gull Lake on their way back to Kalamazoo. They ended up getting lost but made it back to Karen’s apartment eventually where they talked until the wee hours in the morning. After this date, the rest was history. They met three times per week but found it hard to get together since they both worked different hours. On Karen’s 34th birthday after a trip on a Tri-Motor plane and dinner at the Black Swan, John proposed. Since they got engaged on Karen’s birthday, they wanted to get married on John’s birthday. However, in 1994, his birthday happened to be Easter weekend, so they wed the following weekend on April 9, 1994, at St. Joseph Church in Kalamazoo, MI. The happy couple honeymooned on the Hawaiian Islands of Oahu, Hawaii, and Maui. While there they went whale watching, took a helicopter ride over an active volcano, and enjoyed the beautiful scenery, waterfalls, and beaches that Hawaii had to offer.
The two greatest days of John’s life was the day he married Karen and the day that the couple welcomed their son, Michael Thomas Moore, on July 24, 1995. John spent as much time as he could with Michael. The duo enjoyed watching television, playing outside, going to Fanfare to play with Star Wars miniatures and Heroclix miniatures, and volunteering at the Air Zoo. Without a doubt, their favorite way to spend time together was assembling Lego structures. At the age of nine, Michael was diagnosed with high functioning autism, ADHD, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and tic disorder. John took Mike’s disabilities very hard, but he and Karen helped him receive a great deal of therapeutic exercises and instruction provided by multiple therapists.
John always loved working with his hands, especially with wood. He also enjoyed attending local air shows and volunteered at the Air Zoo’ s Restoration Center. Occasionally, he would bring Mike with him, and he would help John with odd jobs like dusting the planes. Playing sports and watching his beloved MSU football team were other ways that John enjoyed spending his free time. Some of John’s favorite TV shows were Home Improvement, War of the Worlds, Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, and Indiana Jones. For music, John enjoyed listening to classical and country music.
Diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2013, John was lovingly cared for at home by Karen and Michael for as long as they were able. Eventually, he required more care and spent several years going to Breaktime Club and moved to Brookdale Memory Care facility in 2019 and in 2021 he moved to Northwoods Village. John leaves behind countless memories and cherished moments with his beloved family and friends that they will hold onto forever.
John M Moore passed away on Thursday, October 21, 2021 at Northwoods Village. Members of his family included his wife Karen; son Michael; 4 siblings: Joan Behlmaier of West Seneca, NY, Robert Moore of Jamestown, NC, James Moore of West Seneca NY, and Daniel Moore of Bloomfield Hills. He is also survived my many nieces and nephews. The family would like to thank Hospice Care of SW Michigan and Northwoods Village for the excellent care that he received.
Please join us for a Life Story Visitation on Thursday (October 27) from 5-7 PM at Betzler Life Story Funeral Homes, 6080 Stadium Drive, Kalamazoo (269) 375-2900. A prayer service will be held at 7 pm. Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11 am on Friday (October 28) at St. Joseph Catholic Church and the family will receive friends one hour prior to the service. Burial will be in the Mt. Olivet Cemetery. Visit John’s webpage at BetzlerLifeStory.com to archive favorite memories, photos and sign his guestbook. Memorial contributions may be made to St. Joseph Catholic Church or Hospice Care of SW Michigan.