Author: Kelly Ableidinger

Zula Ann Starr

Zula Ann Starr, age 86, of Portage passed away September 11, 2021. She was preceded in death by her first husband, Carl Petroff; son Christopher Petroff; second husband, Robert Starr; and parents, Paul and Mamie Chirco.

She is survived by her children, Cathy (Scott) Lindsay, Kim (nee Petroff) Lindsay, son-in-law of many years Russell Lindsay; grandchildren, Sara (Eric) Lindsay, Christopher Lindsay, Carl Petroff, Crystal Lindsay, Bryan Lindsay, John Paul Arredondo, and Jessica (Greg) Ortiz; great-grandchildren, Armani, Alexa, Gianni, Dakoda, Savanna, Devin, AJ, Anissa, and Xander; siblings, Tom (Marge) Chiro, and Mae (Tony) Plesac; sister-in-law, Patricia Lever, 8 brother and sister-in-law’s in California; several nieces, nephews, extended family and dear friends.

Zula cherished her time spent with her precious family. She adored her grandchildren and was very close to her loving nieces and nephews. She enjoyed watching the Chicago Cubs and she was a movie buff. She knew all of the actresses and actors in movies. She was especially a huge fan of John Wayne. Everyone knew how much she loved and enjoyed food. Before her husband passed away, they enjoyed dancing. They would go out dancing on the town and people would watch them do the jitterbug for hours. Zula is going to be missed by so many that knew her. May her memories be etched in our hearts forever.

Friends are invited to visit the family on Friday, September 17, 2021 from 2:00 pm – 6:00 pm at Calumet Park Funeral Chapel (370 N County Line Rd. Hobart IN 46342) there will be a service beginning at 5:30 pm. For further information please call 219-940-3791.

Donald Ray Hamilton

Donald R. Hamilton (1945–2021)
Donald R. “Don” Hamilton of Portage, Indiana formerly of Calumet Township passed away peacefully at his home on September 5, 2021.

Don was born May 13, 1945 in Gary and attended Calumet High School where he eventually met and married the love of his life Cheryl (Harms) who survives on December 3, 1962. Together they shared a “Wonderful Life“ of nearly 59 years and raise their three daughters. Still cherishing the wonderful memories are his daughters Kimberly (Dawayne) Davis, Laticia (Kevin) Roach, Jennifer (late Daniel) Hamilton, his grandchildren Jessica, Bridget, Megan, Daniel, Donald, Nicholas, Danielle, Dana, Daisha, his great grandchildren Alyssa, Joey, Jacob, Aaron, Kaitlin, Andrew, Vinny, A.J., Bryson, Gianna, his sister Carol (Ron) Vargo, his brother Wayne (Christine) Hamilton and his sister-in-law Patty (Kip) Spencer.

Don was a 50 year member of Laborers’ Local 41 where he was the Business Manager for 18 years, served as president of the Northwestern Indiana Building Trades Council, Vice-President of the Indiana Laborers District Council and Trustee of the Indiana Laborers’ Welfare Fund. Don was also a recipient of the prestigious Sagamore of the Wabash award, a member of Griffith Masonic Lodge #735, member of the South Bend Scottish Rite 32 Mason and a member of the Orak Shrine Temple in Michigan City, IN.

Besides the “occasional“ outing to the river boat, Don loved his family and family get togethers, perch fishing and tending to his yard.

Don was preceded in death by his parents Ora and Mamie (Brown) Hamilton, in-laws Robert and Margaret (Tokash) Harms, brother-in-law‘s Jack Harms and Rick “Uncle Chops” Harms.

Private family services are being entrusted to Rendina Funeral Home.

At the families request, in lieu of flowers donations to Sharing Meadows (sharefoundation.org) 6001-6437 County Rd. 300E LaPorte, IN 46350, in Don‘s honor are preferred.

Carolyn Dee Chisko

Carolyn Dee Chisko, age 72, of Lake Station, passed away on August 25, 2021. She was preceded In death by her parents, Kenneth and Florence Wesoloeski; and brother, Roy Gibson. She attended St. Frances Xavier Church in Lake Station.
Carolyn is survived by her husband of 44 years, Joseph Chisko; children, Dawn (Cody) Allen, Yale (Michelle) Chisko, Lucas Chisko, Janet (Mitchell) Louthan, and Diana Montanino; brother, Doug (Betty) Gibson; grandchildren, Joey, Savannah, Timothy, Christopher, Stephen, Brooke, Danielle, Kiley, Abigayle, Anthony, Carma; several great-grandchildren; many nieces, nephews, extended family, and dear friends.
Carolyn enjoyed playing on her cell phone, Facebooking, playing bingo, and horseback riding. She was a dedicated Chicago Cubs fan, and we are going to miss her cheering at the tv while her Cubbies were playing. She especially loved spending time with her precious family. May her memories be in our hearts and minds until we meet again. Funeral arrangements entrusted with Calumet Park Funeral Chapel (370 N. County Line Rd. Hobart IN. 46342) For further information please call 219-940-3791.

Stephanie Rose Duncan

Stephanie Rose Duncan, age 72, of Portage In, passed away on August 13, 2021. She was preceded in death by her parents, James and Glodine Jordon.
Stephanie is survived by her children, Alan Jordon, Michelle Jordon, Shanell (Tony) Jefferson and Tiffany Duncan; brother, Robert Jordon; grandchildren, Michael Jordon, Cadence Jefferson, Antonio Jefferson, Mya Jefferson, Alan Jordon, Byron Jordon, Aaron Jordon and Alanna Jordon; 5 great-grandchildren; 1 niece, 1 nephew and several extended family and dear friends.

Stephanie was a dedicated member of Word of Life Christian Fellowship International Church in Merrillville IN., where she graciously accepted the calling of Evangelist. Stephanie loved ministry and through the years led many teachings and the Nursing Home Ministry. Stephanie enjoyed all things that would challenge her mind such as puzzles, crosswords, brain teasers, reading along with television shows like The Discovery Channel and Jeopardy, in which she was all very good at. She often found satisfaction in seeing the results of her work in cleaning and yard work, which as she would say, allowed her time to clear her head. Stephanie had a great sense of humor and loved to laugh. Stephanie approached everyone she encountered with love, compassion and as a child of God. Stephanie always supported and played a vital role in the lives of those that called her Mom, Grandma, GG and friend. Stephanie will be greatly missed by all that knew and loved her. We will keep her memories alive for eternity.

Friends are invited to visit with family on Monday, August 23, 2021, at Calumet Park Funeral Chapel (7535 Taft St. Merrillville IN. 46410) from 10:00 AM until the time of service at 1:00 PM, Pastor Cheryl Clemes officiating. Burial at Calumet Park Cemetery. Family has requested to please wear a mask and use social distancing precautions

Sandra Rae Pawelczyk

Sandra R. Pawelczyk, age 78, of Merrillville, passed away on August 12, 2021. She was preceded in death by her husband, Edwin J. Pawelczyk; parents, Joseph and Lydia Boyk; sister, Delores Hohman; and brother Lester Hohman.

Sandra is survived by her son, Joe (Lisa) Janusz, granddaughter, Brianna Zircher; many nieces, nephews and extended friends and family.
Sandra had retired from Southlake Mental institution where she did insurance claims. Big part of her life was spent with Prudential Insurance Co. where she also processed insurance claims.

She was a parishioner at Our Lady of Consolation Church, a member of the over 55 club and a member of the American Legion Auxiliary Post 20 in Crown Point, formerly of Legion 285 in Merrillville. Sandra enjoyed gambling at the casino boats, she loved to crochet, spending time in the over 55 club, her Prudential reunions, and most importantly she cherished her precious family. She will be deeply missed by all that knew and loved her. May her memories be etched in our hearts and minds forever.>
A memorial visitation will be held on August 18, 2021 from 10:00am until 2:00 pm at Calumet Park Funeral Chapel (7535 Taft St. Merrillville IN 46410) A memorial service will begin at 1:00pm Father Peter Muha officiating. Any further information please call 219-736-5840

Stephen Ruisard

Stephen Bruce Ruisard, age 72, a resident of Portage for more than 30 years, passed away on July 28, 2021. Steve was a parishioner of First United Methodist Church in Portage and former parishioner at the Garyton Covenant Church. He was a dedicated member of the United Steelworkers Union and The American Legion. He had retired a few years ago after nearly 50 years with Bethlehem Steel/ISG. He served as an infantryman for the U.S. Army in Vietnam, earning medals and honors. He graduated from Demotte High School. He will always be remembered for his kindness and generosity by his family and church, and by the many charities to which he contributed.

Steve was preceded in death by his parents Joseph and Mary Ruisard; and brother Bruce Ruisard.

He is survived by his children, Stephen (Carla) Ruisard and Amber (Dan) Lexsa; grandchildren, Xavier English, Isabel Ruisard, Riff Ruisard, and Allie Lexsa; siblings, Rodney Ruisard, Richard Ruisard, Charles Ruisard, Jeff Ruisard and Lisa Way; several nieces, nephews, extended family, and dear friends.

Steve loved spending time with his family, who will miss playing board and video games with him (and losing to him at trivia). Steve passed on this love of old classic rock, reading, science fiction, and classic cars to his children and grandchildren. He was handy at fixing things and was often sought out for his advice. He was passionate about gardening, growing mostly vegetables, and about cooking; he loved a chance to share a new recipe. He enjoyed new technology, whether he was building himself a computer or getting a new gadget for the kitchen. He had an entrepreneurial spirit, having started several small businesses of his own over the years. He will be deeply missed by so many who knew and loved him. May his memories be with us until we meet again.

Funeral services entrusted with Calumet Park Funeral Chapel Hobart/Portage. There will be a memorial service for Stephen on August 29, 2021 at First United Methodist Church in Portage (2637 McCool Rd.Portage IN. 46368) at 2:00 pm. For further information please call 219-940-3791.

Frankie L. Yates

Frankie L. Yates, age 69, of Portage passed away surrounded by his loving family on Monday, July 19, 2021. He was preceded in death by his parents, Jesse and Gladia Yates; brothers, James, Roger and Aaron Yates.

He is survived by his lovely wife, Katherine Yates; sons, Frank Yates, Jason (Helen) Yates; daughters, Melissa (fiancé Joe Walden) and Erica Yates; grandchildren, Sierra Mueller, Sonnie Mueller, Brody Mueller, Jazmine Yates, Jesse Yates, Jelena Kidwell, Alexis Larson, Victoria Larson, Kayla Yates and Dylan Meeks; great-grandchildren, Boyce Morris, Waylon Morris, and Harlee Erdmam; brothers, Samuel (Cindy) Yates, Delbert (Barb) Yates and Larry (Gloria) Yates; sisters, Patti (Adolph) Boudreauk and Tina Adams.

Frankie retired from Laborers Local #81, he was a proud Vietnam Veteran USMC. He was also a member of the American Legion Post 100. Some special things Frankie loved doing in his spare time included managing Little League baseball, the cooking channel, his dog Blue, everyone that knew him knew how much he enjoyed his cookouts and he especially cherished is precious family. He sure did leave a mark on everyone he met. He will be missed by so many that knew him. May his memories be forever etched in our hearts.

Friends are invited to visit with the family on Saturday, July 24, 2021 from 12:00pm – 4:00pm with a funeral service beginning at 3:30pm at Calumet Park Funeral Chapel (370 N. County Line Rd. Hobart IN 46342) Zdravko Suleski “Z” officiating. For further questions please call 219-940-3791

Leah Fifer

Leah Fifer, age 54, of Hobart, passed away on July 2, 2021. She was a parishioner of the Central Church of God. Leah was preceded in death by her parents Howard and Bonnie Hendrix.

She is survived by her loving husband of 40 years, Douglas Fifer; son, Bryan (Kelly) Fifer; siblings, Frank Hendrix, Tim (Lisa) Hendrix, Donna Hendrix; grandchildren, Jeydan , Miley, Kynlie, and Kanden; many extended family and friends.

Leah loved to travel, enjoyed going to concerts, bike riding with her husband, she had a bird sanctuary outside her window which she spent a lot of time feeding and watching the birds. Her family was precious to her and she will be missed so deeply by everyone who knew her. We will cherish our memories of her in our hearts forever.

Memorial visitation will be held on Monday, July 12, 2021 from 2:00 – 6:00 pm with a chapel service at 5:30pm at Calumet Park Funeral Chapel (370 N. County Line Rd. Hobart IN 46342). For further information please call 219-940-3791.

Freddie Ortiz Jr.

Freddie Ortiz Jr., age 51, of Lake Station, passed away on June 19, 2021. He was preceded in death by his father, Freddie Ortiz Sr. and his brother Javier Ortiz (who recently passed away June 18, 2021).

Freddie is survived by his loving wife, Luz Ortiz; mother, Nereida Ortiz; daughters, Anissa Ortiz and Selestina (Eli) Collazo; sister, Connie (Luis) Ortiz, granddaughter, Amelia; sister-in-law, Jeanette Mendez; close nieces and nephews, Selena (Benjamin Velasco), Sofia, Xavier, Jonathan, Angel and Alex; great nephew, Landon; and several aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and friends.

Freddie was dedicated to his career and truly loved his job as a welder. He also loved building things. Freddie was a social butterfly; he was so free spirited and just loved life. He will be missed deeply by so many and even though he is gone we will always have the wonderful memories we shared with him forever.

Visitation will be held on Thursday, June 24, 2021 from 3:00 – 7:00 P.M. with a chapel prayer service at 6:30 P.M. at Calumet Park Funeral Chapel ( 370 N. County Line Rd. Hobart IN 46342) Funeral service will be on Friday, June 25, 2021 at 10:00 A.M. at Calumet Park Funeral Chapel, Pastor Jose Ramirez officiating. Burial at Blake Cemetery, Portage Indiana.