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C/O Lynn Johnson, 801 W. Arlington
Bangor, MI 49013
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Life Story / Obituary
A man of integrity, Loren Pyle had a vibrant love for living, and did so at every opportunity all while enjoying the company of those he called family and friend. A devoted, loving provider, he loved his family above all else, and dedicated himself to the values for which he was raised. Although fiercely competitive, Loren was an educator by nature which he handed down through the generations. Deeply missed, he will be fondly remembered.
The year 1938 overflowed with mixed blessings in America. While the U.S made great economic strides after the hardships of the Great Depression, an unwelcome recession found unemployment rates once again reaching drastic levels. Amidst these changing times in Warsaw, Indiana, the birth of Loren on July 11, 1938 filled his parent’s hearts with joy. The son of Emery and Grace (Moe) Pyle, young Loren was one of two children, having joined his older sister, Helen.
Loren’s father was a hard working farmer and carpenter in addition to being very involved in their community. His mother looked after their household and also worked at a local nursing home. From a young age, Loren was taught the value of hard work which continued throughout his life. He attended school in Sidney and enjoyed many friendships all while taking in boyhood adventures. He loved playing basketball at Sidney, where he was known for his “long” shot. This is also where he met his good, lifelong friend, Bill Patrick. Loren was part of the local 4H program where he showed his steers at the local fairs. Later in life, he even “made” his stepdaughters follow in his footsteps and show steers at the local fair.
Loren graduated from Sidney High School and with only 13 in his graduating class, he and his future wife, Sue were sure to attend every alumni banquet. Loren went on to attend Manchester College where he received his teaching degree and played basketball. Loren and Bill would schedule games any place that would allow them to have a ball game. Loren and Bill even accrued a few speeding tickets along the way racing to get from one game to another, and to think they both later became driver’s ed teachers! To pay his way through school, Loren played cards, particularly poker, and often in the locker rooms before or after games. Loren started his teaching career in Indiana. It was during this time when he also became involved in horse racing.
In fact, Loren met Sue, the love of his life while horse racing. She loved his smile and beautiful eyes, plus he was fun to be around. Sue lived in Bloomingdale, and falling head-over-heels in love with her, Loren joined her there. Many of their dates were spent at the races or attending basketball games. As a graduate of Indiana University, Loren earned his Master’s degree and was a lifelong fan of IU basketball.
After Loren and Sue shared vows of marriage in 1976, Loren landed his first teaching position for the Bangor Public School system. He began as a social studies teacher, and later became an Assistant Principal, all while coaching basketball and track. He was known to be strict, but fair, and the kids liked him and appreciated his guidance. Loren was the type to offer solutions for kids rather than ignore them. He was always proud of his students and athletes. He was an excellent coach, and many of the girls track teams won regional’s and went to state. Loren coached the sprinters and Coach Glidden coached the distance runners. This is also how he met another lifelong friend, and fellow coach, Terry Glidden. Loren coached Kristy in basketball and Angie and Kristy in track, and many memories were made. There were a few referees on the basketball court that knew him well. He was known for getting mad at the referee’s for not calling a game correctly, so he’d speed home, resulting in a ticket or two.
Loren was a good provider for Sue and his two stepdaughters whom he loved as his own. He loved Sue’s cooking but he especially loved anything with strawberries, particularly desserts. Although harness racing took up much of his time, his family was near and dear to his heart and they often enjoyed a game of cards together after family get-togethers. Through the years memorable times were shared and enjoyed together as a family. He supported the kids, grandkids, nieces and nephews at their sporting events, sometimes even watching from his truck if he couldn’t make it onto the field. Quite often he’d even just stop by the school just to see if a track meet was taking place.
Naturally drawn to animals, Loren was an excellent trainer. He worked his day job teaching and coaching, and then came home to care for his horses, a full time job in its own right with feeding, jogging, training, and cleaning. Harness racing was especially in Loren’s blood and at one point he owned the fastest pony in the world, “Popular Byrd.” As a family they traveled frequently to races and spent their summers at the fairs. One time while driving to Chicago for a horse race, they stopped at a rest area. After they took time to stretch their legs, Loren was back on the road only to discover he left Sue at the rest stop!
Loren was very proud of his grandchildren Hanna, Morgan, and Collin, attending every sporting event and school related activity, as he did for Angie and Kristy. He also watched Sal & Darwin’s girls – Missy, Marcy, & Lisa play ball, and Mick’s children Chris and Kelly, to eventually watching the next generation Jay, Logan, and Gunnar. He loved his great-granddaughters Quinn and Elle very much. Loren was heartbroken when Kristy passed in 2016, but so proud that Morgan and Collin continue to be her legacy.
Family, sports and horse racing meant everything to Loren and it truly kept him going. He was competitive in nearly everything he did and it was perfect for someone who raced. Loren’s dogs were always by his side. His Australian Shepherds helped him feel like he had a purpose and he took them everywhere.
Ever dedicated and always loyal, Loren could also be quite a jokester. He’d often tease but would play it serious so nobody could tell if he was joking or not. Loren taught his children a good work ethic and good manners which were important to him. Even at the end he was sure to thank and appreciate his nurses and caregivers. He was extremely proud of his kids and grandkids and could brag about them endlessly, yet he was especially proud to see they followed in his footsteps and always asked the kids, no matter what they were up to, how they were doing in their studies. He brought education into the family and was a fine role model for his family to live by. For these things and so much more, Loren leaves a loving legacy always to be remembered.
Mr. Loren Pyle, age 80, of Bloomingdale, Michigan died peacefully on May 19, 2019. Loren was preceded in death by his stepdaughter, Kristin Warner; his sister, Helen Metzger; brother-in-law, Gene Metzger; and his nephew, Douglas Metzger. Surviving are his loving wife of 43 years, Sue; stepdaughter: Angela (Mike) Cronen; three grand-children: Hanna (Tyler) Adams, Morgan Warner, and Collin Warner; two great-grand-daughters: Quinn and Elle Adams; son-in-law: Jeff Warner; sister-in-law: Sally (Darwin) Leathers; brother-in-law: Michael (Robin) Veley; nieces and nephews: Dan (Regina) Metzger, Missy (Steve) Leonard, Marcy Leathers, Lisa (John) Goodell, Christopher (Jessica) Veley, and Kelly (Tom) Ray; many special great-nieces and nephews; and special friends: Terry Glidden and Bill Patrick. Cremation will take place. Visit with family and friends from 5-7 PM on Friday (May 31) at Betzler & Thompson Life Story Funeral Home, 60900 M-40 Hwy, Paw Paw (269) 657-3870 where services will be held at 11 AM on Saturday (June 1). Guests are invited to wear red and white in honor of Loren’s passion for Indiana University, Bangor High School, and Powder Creek Farms. Please visit Loren’s personal web page at www.BetzlerLifeStory.com where you can share a favorite memory or photo and sign his online guestbook before coming to the funeral home. Memorial contributions may be made to the Al-Van Humane Society or Viking Club.