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Joseph M. Merklinger


Joseph Michael Merklinger passed away on April 1, 2022, at the age of 54, after a short battle with cancer. Joe grew up in Lowell, MI and after a motor vehicle accident came to Hope Network Neuro Rehabilitation in 1985. He resided at Hope Network Wildwood West for many years and had many beloved friends. Joe was a friend of Bill W. and Dr. Bob and regularly attended meetings and a weekly fellowship breakfast. After the transfer from wheelchair to car became difficult, he led the effort to carry the message of recovery to others at Hope Network starting a weekly meeting on Hope Network’s campus. Joe enjoyed playing chess, Skip Bo, and cribbage with staff, reading novels by his favorite authors Steven King and Dean Koontz, and listening to his many favorite rock bands such as Korn, Metallica, and Iron Maiden. Joe is missed dearly by his staff and friends at Hope Network and friends of Bill W. and Dr. Bob. Funeral services will be held at 11 AM on Friday, April 8, 2022, at O’Brien-Eggebeen-Gerst Chapel, 3980 Cascade Road SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49546, with visitation one hour prior. Pastor Bruce Vaandrager officiating. Interment Merriman Cemetery.

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5 Responses

  1. We enjoyed having breakfast with you at Bob Evan’s and loved your sense of humor. Peace be with you

  2. Joe- you were a bright light at Hope Network. Despite your physical challenges, you worked hard every day and I always admired your tenacity. I will always remember talking music and books with you, along with your smile and laughter. Rest well, Joe.

  3. Almond milk, 1 ice cube, bold coffee, the best music playlists and one liner comebacks. We’ll miss your smile, your humor and getting beat at Skip Bo by you. Rest easy Joe.

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