Eugene R. Maki


WAKEFIELD, Mich. - Eugene R. Maki, 92, a long-time resident of Wakefield, passed away peacefully Friday morning, March 10, 2017, at Gogebic Medical Care Facility in Wakefield.

Eugene was born on June 20, 1924, in Wakefield, a son of William Oscar and Linnea Marie (Torkko) Maki. He attended Wakefield High School and graduated in 1942.

Following graduation, Eugene proudly served his country in the U.S. Army during World War II in the South Pacific. He was honorably discharged as a technician fifth grade on Nov. 8, 1945. Eugene received the Victory Medal, the American Theater Ribbon, the Asiatic Pacific Theater Ribbon with two Bronze Battle Stars, four Overseas Service Bars and the Good Conduct Medal.

After returning to Wakefield, Eugene enrolled at Northern Michigan University and earned a Bachelor of Arts degree, followed by his Master of Arts degree in education at the University of Michigan.

Eugene was a teacher at the Newberry School for two years. He then began his long teaching career with the Wakefield School District. Eugene served as the principal and was the tennis coach for more than 50 years.

He was a faithful member of First Lutheran Church, now All Saints Lutheran Church, served on the church council, the men's club and church choir.

Eugene was a humble servant to the city of Wakefield serving as mayor and a member of the city council. He was known to many as "Mr. Wakefield." Eugene was a member of the Wakefield-Bessemer Rotary Club, and for a time was the district governor; U.P. Library Board, U.P. Sports Hall of Fame, Wakefield Chamber of Commerce and Wakefield Historical Society. He was a wealth of information keeping sports statistics for many area newspapers including the Ironwood Daily Globe and the Wakefield News.

Eugene is survived by two sisters, Laura Olson, Wakefield, and Carolyn Ozzello, Livonia, N.Y .; two brothers, Douglas, Newtown, Conn., and Donald (Jeanette), Gwinn; numerous nieces and nephews; and other loving relatives.

He was predeceased by his parents; two sisters, Verna Maki and Bernice Stenstrom; and three brothers, Earl, Bernhardt and Lloyd.

The family will greet relatives and friends on Tuesday, March 14, from 10 to 10:45 a.m., at All Saints Lutheran Church, with the honor guard beginning at 10:15 a.m.

A funeral service will follow the visitation at 11 a.m., with the Rev. Bill Jacobson officiating.

Following the service, military rites will take place at the church under the auspices of Wakefield American Legion Geroux Post 11 and Wakefield Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 9084 Honor Guard, assisted by the U.P. Funeral Honors Team.

Luncheon will follow in the church fellowship hall.

A committal service and interment will be at Lakeside Cemetery, Wakefield, in the spring.

Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to Jerald Rocco, owner and manager of Lakeside Memorial Chapel Inc., in Wakefield. Condolences may be expressed online at


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