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Rosemary “Rosie” Fonger



Memorial Contributions:

Fallasburg Historical Society

14029 Covered Bridge Rd NE, Lowell, MI 49331


Lowell Area History Museum

325 W Main St, Lowell, MI 49331

Grandson, Timothy encapsulated much of Rosie in a Facebook post, “My grandmother, Rosie Fonger passed away yesterday morning (7/31/2021). She was anything but the typical grandmother, but then again, she was anything but a typical woman. She stood up for the civil rights of others long before there was a movement. She ran businesses and invested in real estate at a time when women didn’t do that. She was tough. Active up until almost the end. Especially golf and bingo. She loved the city of Lowell that she called home and gave back anyway she could. I don’t think my golf swing ever measured up despite her best efforts since I was 4 and she took every opportunity to point out why it was wrong. 9 holes was her was a long ass day. But I could make a vodka tonic to perfection by the age of 5…She taught me that if anyone ever tells you that you can’t do something then they are full of horse shit. Her words. She’s whipping angels into shape now.” Directives she gave about her funeral. “I don’t want some long obituary; they charge way too much for those damn things. I don’t want a minister because nobody wants to sit there and listen to somebody that doesn’t know me to talk about me. I don’t want any flowers at the funeral – I can’t see them – ill be in the casket. All I want is a dozen roses – nobody needs to be wasting money on me for flowers! I want visitation from 11-1 with a short service for about 10-15 minutes if anybody wants to get up and talk about me – then zoop, up to the cemetery and plant me in the ground by 1:20. I’m not paying for no damn reception, but, if people want to gather somewhere after – fine.”

Visitation will be held on from 11 AM- 1 PM on Wednesday, August 4, 2021, with a short service at 1 PM at Roth-Gerst Chapel, 305 N. Hudson, Lowell, Michigan, 49331. Donations may be made in her name to Fallasburg Historical Society, 14029 Covered Bridge Rd NE, Lowell, MI 49331, or Lowell Area History Museum, 325 W Main St, Lowell, MI 49331. She will be missed by her adoring family and community. If there is a Heaven, she and Mac are up there playing golf and bickering about her next business venture up in heaven – Mac saying no and her saying shell do what she g-d wants to!

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5 Responses

  1. So sorry to hear of Rosie’s passing – I lived in Lowell for 25 yrs- I think it was through golf I remember her the best – that was many years ago RIP Rosie l

  2. I will always remember working in her restaurant so many years ago. Aunt Rosie was fun, energetic, friendly to all who came in. Blessings on her life that was uniquely lived.

  3. Aunt Rosie was always fun to be around and I will certainly never forget her Rosie’s Drive-In with her broasted chicken and Nick and Neal burgers. I remember a Thanksgiving that we had at her restaurant and there was a blizzard that day and some couple traveling stopped as they thought she was open and Aunt Rosie had them come in and have coffee. That was Aunt Rosie always helping. Aunt Rosie will be missed by her family.

  4. During the late 1940s and early 1950s our family lived right next door (south) to Mac and Rosie Fonger’s house at 619 N. Monroe Street in Lowell. Our houses shared a common driveway and an old concrete barn-foundation in the backyard, as well as adjacent vegetable gardens at the back of our properties. A huge sprawling silver maple tree provided abundant backyard shade for both families.

    Her sons Rick and Tom were regular playmates for the five Thaler kids, with backyard carnivals, ball games, sandbox, swings, and frequent evening games of hide-and-seek and kick-the-can. There were lots of kids within a one or two block radius in those “Baby Boom” years.

    In the early 1950s. Mac and Rosie had the first TV set (expensive, small black and white) in the neighborhood. On-air programs only began at 4 pm until 10 pm weekdays and all day Saturday. So us neighbor kids were often in Fongers’ house to watch the late afternoon and Saturday morning children’s shows like the Howdy Doody, and Kukla Fran and Ollie puppet shows, and lots of cowboy westerns and old movies.

    Rosie and Mac graciously welcomed the frequent “extra” kids in their house, even sharing snacks or kool-aid drinks. About a year or so later, other families finally got their own smallTVs– but we always remembered Mac and Rosie’kindness to us kids. They were wonderful neighbors and special people.

  5. My condolences to the Fonger family. I went to high school with Rosie’s son Andy and our group of friends frequently hung out at Rosie’s restaurant. She never hustled us out, even though we stayed for hours after only ordering a coke and basket of fries. If asked about notable people I remember from Lowell, Rosie is always on the list.

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