Big Rapids Daily News
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Kathleen Ruth McLachlin, 58, of Big Rapids, passed away Sunday, March 31, 2019, at Altercare of Big Rapids.

She was born April 21, 1960, in Big Rapids, the daughter of Elmer and Delores (Podersek) Ward. Kathleen grew up on the family farm at Crapo Flats near Hersey, and loved animals, especially cats.  In 1978, she graduated as an honor student from Reed City High School, where she was also active in gymnastics and marching band. 

Kathleen earned her Associates Degree from Ferris State University.  She lived in Pennsylvania for many years, working in medical offices.  In 2013, she returned to Big Rapids, where she had lived since.  Kathleen enjoyed photographing nature and wildlife, and was also a poet, having been published in the National Audubon Society magazine.

Kathleen is survived by her son Brad of PA; 5 sisters, Eileen Kilmer-Heeringa (Jim) of Holland, Christine Shearer (Ed) of Utah, Pat McCauley (Duane) of Reed City, Pauling Fisher (Gordon) of Hersey, Marlene Buter (Terry) of Holland; 2 brothers, Mark (Laura) and Matt (Donna) Ward, both of Hersey; a brother-in-law Gary Scharke; and many nieces and nephews.  She was preceded in death by her parents, a sister Dorene Scharke, and a brother Mike Ward.    

Graveside services will be announced for later this spring at the Crapo Cemetery near Hersey, where Kathleen will be laid to rest with her parents.  Memorial contributions in her name may be made for the American Diabetes Association.  Care and arrangements are entrusted to the Mohnke Funeral Home in Big Rapids.

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