The Daily Globe - Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

Elwyn Sell


April 17, 2018

WAKEFIELD, Mich. - Elwyn Sell, 98, of Marenisco, (formerly of Tecumseh), passed away several weeks shy of his 99th birthday at Gogebic Medical Care Facility in Wakefield, on March 21, 2018.

Elwyn was born on April 9, 1919. in Lenawee County in southern Michigan to Dayton and Hazel Sell of Clinton. He graduated from Clinton High School and served his country during World War II in the Air Force, mainly at Carlsbad, N.M., as a sergeant in the Quartermaster Corps. While stationed out West, Elwyn was inducted into the fraternal order of the Freemasons.

Elwyn married Doris Jean Jacobson of Thomaston in 1950+, eventually settling at Evans Lake, near Michigan's Irish Hills area.

In the 1950, Elwyn partnered with his brother, Marvin Gene Sell, of Onsted, among others, and purchased over 100 scenic acres of land in the heart of the Irish Hills, directly behind where the Irish Hills Twins Towers formerly stood on U.S. 12, and for years through the 1950s and '60s held popular weekend dances in the dance hall. Elwyn would hire the band, develop special events and promote the dances by delivering flyers to businesses throughout the area.

Under this same partnership, the acreage was turned into a beautiful nine-hole golf course. Elwyn could be seen mowing fairways and working in the pro shop. In the early 1960s, Elwyn sold his share to his brother, Gene, who then developed the property into the Irish Hills Sports Park, which provided golf in the summer and skiing/tobogganing in the winter.

In 1957, Doris gave birth to their first son, John William. Thomas Allen soon followed in 1959. The parents provided their sons with a stable and loving environment at Evans Lake and Elwyn imparted to his sons a love of the outdoors through frequent camping/canoeing/fishing trips throughout Michigan's lower and upper peninsulas.

Elwyn's unwavering support of University of Michigan football influenced his youngest son to earn his degree from Ann Arbor. Elwyn also imparted his sons with his love of all types of music. He collected, recorded and enjoyed everything from Bob Wills (Texas Swing) to the Beatles (rock-'n-roll.)

In 1977, he retired from Tecumseh Products as a specification writer in the engineering department - where he had worked for the better part of 30 years - and moved from Tecumseh to Lake Gogebic, where he lived until his admission to Gogebic Medical Care Facility in October 2017.

Elwyn was preceded in death by his wife, Doris, and brother, Gene, and is survived by two sons; John, of Marenisco, and Thomas, of Oshkosh, Wis.

A memorial service will be held at All Saints Lutheran Church in Wakefield at 10 a.m. Saturday, April 28.


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