Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

James Anthony Soraruf ll

HOLLY, Mich. - There must have been a celebration going on in heaven today as James Anthony Soraruf entered and was reunited with his parents, his sisters, his wife, Cecilia and his son; but sadness here on earth with his children and many friends.

He lived a very vibrant life, took risks, was tireless and loved by many. Everything was "copacetic" no matter what the situation.

James was born on Saturday evening, May 17, 1924, to a young Mary Repischak Soraruf and James Soraruf. They were both over the moon with much joy and, like many of us when our children enter this world, could not take their eyes off him. He had two sisters, Virginia and Elizabeth. They grew up in Ironwood, Michigan, where, after attending Norrie Elementary and Luther L. Wright High School, he enlisted with the U.S. Marines and served in World War II ,. He was a "proud" veteran.

When he returned, James married his high school sweetheart, Cecilia Kolesar, and moved to Ypsilanti, Michigan, where they had 11 children; James III, Mary, Odilia, Elizabeth, Gerard, Theresa (she is the middle child), Christopher, Michael, Monica, Phillip and Greg.

He loved the earth and everything in it, birds, trees, camping, fishing, biking, entertaining company and traveling the world. But most of all, he was passionate about his children and grands, Camp Schoolcraft and the outdoors. Spaghetti and pasties were his favorite meals, he never said "no" to ice cream, loved the color blue, and he respected his parents.

Dad worked hard all his life and provided for many. He even created a home for those who did not have one. Our father was a great storyteller, confidant, mentor and boy could he sing, every song was his favorite.

James had 20 grandchildren and 27 great-grandchildren known as "Great GrandPapa."

He was a definition of unconditional love and forgave all those who wronged him, damn I miss him. He will be long remembered how he loved life, adored his family, visitors any time of day or night, being read to and had a grand sense of humor and beautiful smile to the end.

Instead of flowers, he requested that you call your brothers, sisters or family and tell them you love them, play hide and seek, give wheelbarrow rides to the grands, throw or pitch a ball, send your out of town family and friends a "care package" with pens, note pads, stamps, Snickers and bottle of lotion to keep "soft" or a "thinking of you" card. Last of all, laugh, smile, sing, keep a good attitude, find the best in others, enjoy the outdoors and all its splendor, respect your flag and country, but most of all ... pray for peace. These are the things he wants to be remembered for.

In honor of his service to his country during WWII, there will be a military honor guard service and interment of cremated remains in Spring of 2021 at Great Lakes National Cemetery in Holly, Michigan.

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