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Les’ life began March 16, 1939 in Judsonia, Arkansas. During his childhood Les’ family moved to Michigan, making Watervliet their home. As a young adult he enlisted during the Vietnam conflict and proudly served his country in the United States Army. After his return, Les continued his service as a member of the National Guard.

Les’ work as a Tool & Die Engineer took him to various metal companies in Michigan, Texas, North Carolina and California. After living north, south, east and west, he eventually returned with his family to Michigan in 1993, where they have lived since. His greatest joy was teaching Sunday school and serving as a lay minister for his church families, most recently South Haven Church of Christ.

Outside of working, in Les’ younger years you could find him hunting, fishing or playing golf. Les was a talented musician and shared those talents playing bass in several bands, singing with friends and family, and sharing his trademark whistle wherever he went. He liked to relax with a good crossword puzzle and enjoyed cooking Greek specialties for his loved ones. His all time favorite “hobby” was spending time with his grandchildren and supporting all their endeavors.

Les leaves behind a loving family to cherish his memory including: his dedicated wife Diana “Becky” Burford; three daughters, Leslie (Jim) Colford, Karen Griffin, and Michelle McCarley; seven grandchildren, Taylor, Jessica, Riley, Sophia, RJ, Jack, and Hannah; two siblings, Wathada Thomas (Carl) and Robert Burford; and many nieces and nephews.

Les was promoted to heaven Monday, August 1, 2022 while at home surrounded by family.

He is preceded in death by a son, Darren Keefer, his parents, Lester and Cleffie (Hicks) Burford, and a brother Ronald Burford.

Funeral services will be celebrated Monday, Aug. 8, 2022 at 1 p.m. with visitation prior starting at 12 p.m. at Hutchins Funeral Home in Watervliet. Burial will follow in Watervliet Cemetery.

Donations may be made in Les’ name to Grace Christian School in Watervliet. You are invited to leave a message of comfort for Les’ family at


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Richard W. Dibble, 101, of Hagar Twp., died April 1, 2024 at home. Duffield & Pastrick Family Funeral Home and Cremation Services, Coloma


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