Onalee Bell (Klemach) Gremel




Born: May 8, 1937
Death: May 12, 2014

Onalee Belle (Klemach) Gremel age 76 of Grand Rapids passed away peacefully on May 12, 2014 with her loving husband Richard at her side. Onalee was born in Saginaw, MI on May 8, 1937 to Fred and Louise Clara (Wright) Klemach. Her parents, sister Mary Louise Proctor and brother Fred Klemach, and grandson Alex Gremel, preceded her in passing. In addition to Richard, her soul mate from the age of 15, Onalee is survived by her daughter Amy (Steve) Henley and son Andy (Meredith) Gremel, grandchildren Tina Baker, Tara Dillon, Liza and Adam Henley, Emily and Ashley Gremel, and great grandson Jackson Baker. Onalee graduated in 1955 from Arthur Hill High School in Saginaw, Michigan where she participated in many activities including being named captain of the Cheerleading team. In 1957, Onalee graduated from the University of Michigan School of Dentistry–Curriculum of Dental Hygiene. In 1967, Richard and Onalee moved to Grand Rapids from East Lansing where Dick had been teaching at the Michigan State University College of Veterinary Medicine to establish Forest Hills Veterinary Clinic. Onalee practiced dental hygiene in Grand Rapids, assisted Richard with his veterinary practice, and devoted herself to raising her children as well as many litters of puppies. She also volunteered her time at the M.C. Steketee Guild at Blodgett Hospital and the American Cancer Society. The family cottage in Bear Lake, Michigan was home to many wonderful summer memories before Dick and Onalee retired to the Western Upper Peninsula. Onalee was a quiet fighter, losing her father at age 14, surviving breast cancer at the age of 38, bouncing back from heart surgery in her 60’s, and adjusting to life’s challenges with Alzheimer’s. She will be greatly missed by her family, friends, and the caring staff at Clark Retirement Community, but her legacy and love of knitting, gardening, long walks, and animals will carry on. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Clark Foundation: 1551 Franklin Street S.E. Grand Rapids, MI 49506. www.clarkretirement.org/foundation.php A private family gathering will celebrate Onalee’s life at a later date. The family is being assisted by O’Brien-Eggebeen-Gerst Funeral Services.

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