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Hildegard Theresa (Schiele) Molter was a bright spot in our community. She was faithful, loyal and strong woman who touched many lives through church, teaching career, extensive volunteering and countless friendships. She passed from this world on Sunday, Jan. 15, 2023.

Hilda was born in Chicago on Jan. 7, 1941 to Anton and Theresa Schiele. Hilda was raised on their family farm in Bangor. She attended Nazareth Academy in Kalamazoo where she had a lifelong affection and served on the alumni board for many years. While raising four children she put herself through Western Michigan University and received a bachelor’s degree in 1974, she later received her master’s and specialist degree from Western.

In 1980 she married her amazing and beloved husband Robert (Bob) E. Molter of Coloma and remained together until her death. After her retirement she and Bob traveled extensively and loved camping and spending their winters in Sebring, Florida.

She began her teaching career at St. Joseph Catholic School in Watervliet and later at Washington Elementary in Coloma. She loved her time as a 5th grade CUE teacher at Coloma Middle School. This meant that she had an opportunity to work as a reading specialist with the classroom teacher. She traveled internationally to the birthplace of her parents and other destinations, always proud of her German heritage. She maintained relationships with many of her German cousins and relatives throughout her life.

She is survived by four children from her first marriage, Robert (Debra) Martin of Murfreesboro Tennessee, Julie Wuerfel of St. Joseph, Christine Martin of Paris Tennessee, and Kelley (Jim) Vigrass of Ypsilanti. She is also survived by seven stepchildren: Robert (Kim) Molter of Charlevoix, George (Dina) Molter of Paw Paw, Gina (Patrick) O’Brien of Coloma, Lisa (Lindy) Dolezen of Benton Harbor, Donna (Jim) Strouse of St. Joseph, Dana (Chris) Nosich of Sister Lakes, and Peter (Natalie Contreras) Molter of Hartford; 16 grandchildren, seven great-grandchildren as well as her sister Elaine Briar of West Olive.

She is preceded in death by her parents, her sister Mary Ann Sedlin of Chicago, brother-in-law George Briar, son-in-law Ken Wuerfel, granddaughter Katie Martin, grandson Bret Hawblitzel and great-granddaughter Lucille DeYoung.

Visitation will be 5-7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 20 at Duffield & Pastrick Family Funeral Home in Coloma. Mass of Christian Burial will be held 11 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 21 at St. Basil Catholic Church, 513 Monroe Blvd, South Haven with internment immediately following at Coloma Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to St. Basil Catholic School, 94 Superior St., South Haven, MI (


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Barbara Nord, 86, of Watervliet, died June 17, 2024 at Corewell Health Hospital, St. Joseph. Hutchins Funeral Home, Watervliet John L. Martin, 93, of Coloma, died June 14, 2024 at home. Starks & Mench


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