Stella Louise Totzke Bowers, age 91, returned to her Lord in Heaven on Saturday, April 27 2019
To send flowers in memory of Stella Bowers (Totzke), please visit our Heartfelt Sympathies Store.
surrounded by her family. She is survived by her husband of 69 years, Lynn Bowers, three children Kay
(George) Hofacker, Jeff (Jan) Bowers, and Kurt (Kim) Bowers, four grandchildren, Daniel
(Sonia) Hofacker, Amy (Cam) DeCaussin, Sara (Justin) Schaudt, Lea Bowers, and three great
grandchildren, Hunter, Mason and Marcel. Stella is also survived by her brother Edgar (Kaye)
Totzke and is preceded in death by siblings Virginia (Ed) Radewald and Bud (Barb) Totzke.
Stella was born on July 18, 1927 to August and Emma Totzke. She began her life on a dairy
farm in Baroda, Michigan where she learned the value of hard work, helping maintain the family
business alongside her siblings, older sister Virginia, and two younger brothers Gerald (Bud)
and Edgar (Butch). She walked to school every day, and graduated as the valedictorian. After
graduation, Stella went to work as a bookkeeper, where she continued her education with on
the job training.
An enthusiast for life, Stella knew how to have fun. She went down to Chicago with her friends
for the Lawrence Welk Show where she had the opportunity to dance with Lawrence Welk
himself. She was involved in Junior Farm Bureau for many years where she focused on a
number of fundraising activities. It was at Junior Farm Bureau that she met the love of her life,
Stella and Lynn were married on September 10, 1949 in Baroda, Michigan at Zion Evangelical
Church. Stella made her own wedding dress, spending 8 hours on the hem alone. They walked
down the aisle together where they gave their vows which they kept for almost 70 years. They
set out to celebrate with a trip around Lake Michigan and finished their trip in Lansing where
they went to look for a place to live. They found a one bedroom basement apartment with no
door on the bathroom. Lynn went back to school at Michigan State and studied on Stella’s
sewing table. While Lynn finished school, Stella worked as a secretary for Michigan Farm
Bureau. After he graduated, she went to work at Benson Tire in Benton Harbor, Michigan right
next door to where Lynn worked at Producer’s Service.
They bought their first home in St. Joseph, Michigan in 1952 and soon they had their daughter
Kay. Their first son, Jeff was born in 1955. They lived there until 1957, when their third child,
Kurt was born. Stella was still in the hospital recovering from a c-section when Lynn moved the
family to Kalamazoo to accommodate his job at Allied Chemical. Stella brought Kurt home to a
brand new house where they lived for two years.
In 1959, the family moved to Comstock Park, Michigan. They bought a home on Hachmuth
Drive where they lived for the rest of their lives.
Lynn and Stella quickly found their church home at St. John’s United Church of Christ on Bridge
St. in Grand Rapids. Stella was devoted to the church where she served as the financial
secretary for 17 years. She also worked for Baker Auto Parts for 37 years and led 4H for the
girls in their neighborhood. Later, they discovered a new church home at Trinity Congregational
Lynn and Stella enjoyed traveling together around the United States and the world including
Alaska, Arizona, Florida, Washington DC, Hawaii, Oregon, Montreal, Canada, Mexico,
Germany, Chile, Australia, and New Zealand. They purchased a small home in Lake Placid,
Florida where they spent their winters for many years.
Stella was well known for her baking, knitting and homemaking. She was deeply loved by her
family and friends and will be missed.
In lieu of flowers, consider memorials to either:
Trinity Congregational Church or Lynn and Stella Bowers Scholarship Fund (All4099)
2725 4 Mile Road NW
Grand Rapids, MI 49544
Checks payable to “Michigan State University
Mail to: University Advancement, Spartan Way
535 Chestnut Road, Room 300
East Lansing, MI 48824