James “Jim” Michael Kieszkowski, age 66 of Bear Lake, peacefully passed away on Tuesday April 27, 2021 with his family members by his side at his home on Bear Lake.
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He was born on April 27, 1955 in Manistee, son of the late Ludwig J. and Rogene A. (Schmeling) Kieszkowski. He attended Guardian Angels Elementary School and Manistee Catholic Central, where he graduated with the class of 1973. Jim married Margaret “Meg” Reed on November 5, 2010 at their home on Bear Lake.
Jim was an ambitious entrepreneur with passion for numerous projects benefitting his community. He took great satisfaction in seeing every task through to completion. As a young man, he worked alongside his mother and father, supporting longtime family-owned businesses in Manistee, MI including Jerry’s Flowers, Oak Grove Cemetery, and Kieszkowski Farm. In his later years, he ventured out on his own, building his local legacy with successful businesses such as Oak Grove International, Kieszkowski Greenhouse, apartment rentals, Maggie’s Bear Lake, and Manistee Laundromat and Car Wash. Jim was dedicated to public service and took great pride in his local community. He was always willing to contribute his time and resources to support projects benefitting the lives of others.
While Jim’s persistent drive and entrepreneurial spirit kept him busy, his family and friends were always his priority. When Jim was not hard at work, he could be found around the fire pit with his wife Meg at their home on Bear Lake, spending time with his grandchildren, cruising on his pontoon boat, fishing, hunting, or spending the winters in Florida.
Jim is survived by his wife, Meg Kieszkowski of Bear Lake; 3 sons, Ryan (Heather Schram) Kieszkowski of Manistee, Eric Kieszkowski of Traverse City, and Andy Motnzy of Scottville; daughter, Amy Motnzy of Brooklyn, NY; grandchildren, Annabelle, Cade, Phin, and Reid Kieszkowski, Madison and Brooke Richards and Peyton Scholten of Manistee; Mallory and Sawyer Kieszkowski of Traverse City; great-grandson, Kai Richards-King; sister, Laurie (Shane Jennings) Longcore of Constantine; uncle Larry (Sandy) Schmeling and 2 aunts Carol Schmeling and Lois Schmeling all of Manistee; 2 nieces, Brooklyn Longcore and Courtney McCreery; longtime friend Ray Fortier; and several cousins and close friends that will all deeply miss Jim.
Funeral services for Jim will be held at 11:30AM on Saturday May 1, 2021 at Oak Grove Funeral Home in Manistee with Pastor Seth Bush officiating. The family will receive friends for visitation from 10:30AM until time of service. Cremation will follow and final interment will take place at Oak Grove Cemetery where he will be laid to rest next to his parents. Casual dress encouraged.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in memory of Jim may be directed to the Manistee Catholic Central Athletic Association or to Music on Bear Lake.
Please feel free to share a memory or photo with the family at www.oakgrovefh.com. The family has entrusted funeral arrangements to Oak Grove Funeral Home & Cremation Center in Manistee.