Floyd Spikings

April 16, 1916 – February 17, 1991

Kalamazoo resident Floyd James “Jim” Spikings was born in Lawton, worked for the railroad in Chicago, and served in the Army during World War II.  He later worked as an assembler for the Kozy Coach Company in Kalamazoo and for many years was employed by Musselman’s apple orchards cooperative in Paw Paw.  Spikings was also a correspondent with the homophile organization ONE.

Paw Paw Courier-Leader, February 22, 1991

Juliana Daberkow

Juliana Daberkow pic

June 21, 1951 – February 13, 2018

Born in DeWitt, Juliana Daberkow attended DeWitt High School and Davenport University and later worked as an assembly line worker at Steelcase in Grand Rapids.  She was survived by her life partner of more than 24 years Nancy Botsford.

Grand Rapids Press, February 18, 2018

Sharon Beck

Sharon Beck pic

August 1, 1944 – September 13, 2011

Born in Battle Creek, Sharon Kay Beck resided in Mount Morris and retired after 30 years from Saginaw Steering Gear-Delphi in 2002.  She enjoyed running, her poodles, and traveling in northern Michigan with Hope, her partner of 27 years.

Flint Journal, September 18, 2011

Joseph Accardi

July 17, 1905 – December 11, 1980

Born in Italy, Joseph Accardi immigrated to the U.S., married in 1937, and worked as a storekeeper and an autoworker in Detroit before moving to Grand Rapids.  He owned and operated Papa Joe’s Show Bar from the late 1950s until his death.

Grand Rapids Press, December 13, 1980

Metra, December 18, 1980

Marcella Robinson

Marcella Robinson pic

November 12, 1929 – April 20, 2003

Originally from Beverly, Massachusetts, Marcella “Marcy” Louise Robinson served in the U.S. Navy from 1950 to 1955.  She later moved to Grand Rapids, where she worked as a draftsperson and as an assembler for Laser Alignment.  Robinson and her life partner Myra Marshall attended Reconciliation Metropolitan Community Church.

Grand Rapids Press, April 23, 2003

Sheila Fortuin

Sheila Fortuin pic

May 3, 1952 – November 23, 2016

Born in Byron Center, Portage resident Sheila Fortuin graduated from Byron Center High School in 1970, and attended Ferris State University for a short time before taking a job with the city of East Grand Rapids.  She later worked at the Rock-Tenn paper plant in Otsego until its closure in 2004.  Fortuin and her life partner Trish Breithaupt shared 21 years together.

Life Story