Cover photo for James Meeker's Obituary
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James Meeker

September 15, 1961 — July 7, 2020

James Meeker

James “Big Jim” Allen Meeker, 58, of Mancelona passed away on Tuesday, July 7, 2020.  He was born on September 15, 1961 in Flint, MI the son of Leonard and Pauline (Myers) Meeker.

Jim moved multiple time growing up, but eventually found himself in Northern Michigan for good.  He graduated from Kalkaska High School and went directly into the work force.  Jim was a self-proclaimed jack of all trades, master of none.  Among other things, he was a mechanic, a builder, and a line worker at DURA Automotive as well as Eagle Picher.  It was at Eagle Picher where he met a young woman named Debbie Spires.  They were always special to one another, and they eventually tied the knot on July 20, 2000 in Bellaire.

Jim had a personality that drew people to him.  He was extremely sociable and could strike up a conversation with a complete stranger.  Some may know Jim as “The Grill Master”; he loved to have people over to enjoy the food he prepared on his grill.  He used only charcoal, and it could only be Kingsford.  He also enjoyed working on cars and driving the backroads in his mud truck.  Jim will be remembered as a man who would give you the shirt off his back, and whose sense of humor will never be forgotten.

Jim is survived by his loving wife, Debbie Meeker; five children, Michelle Meeker of Manistique, Nathan (Shannon) Beaver of Hersey, Lesley Jago of Newberry, Samantha (John) Sonnenberg of Carp Lake, and Starr (Fred) Brosofske of Mancelona; twelve grandchildren, Zhoe Meeker, Janna Swisher, Waylon Swisher, Bristol Swisher, Alexa Beaver, Bree Beaver, Wyatt Jago, Hunter Sonnenberg, Johnny Sonnenberg, Alexander Sonnenberg, Jason Brosofske, and Madison Brosofske; one great-grandchild, K.C. Collins; a sister, Rose (Dwight) Jensen of Millington; two nieces, Abby Meeker-Thomas, and April (Greg) Ball; two nephews, Greg (Amanda) Jensen, and Paul Meeker; and many great nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Leonard and Pauline Meeker, and three brothers, Leonard Meeker Jr., Thomas Meeker, and Baby Boy Meeker.

A celebration of Jim’s life will take place at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital.

Arrangements are in the care of the Mancelona Chapel of Mortensen Funeral Homes.  Please sign his online guestbook at

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of James Meeker, please visit our flower store.

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