Derroll Eugene Cortright,
Passed away peacefully with his daughter Jill at his bedside at Sparrow Hospital in Lansing, on Saturday August 1, 2020 at the age of 95 years young, following hip surgery and other medical problems over the past two and a half weeks. Derroll was born at his parent’s farm on New Years Day in 1925, to Ross Derroll Cortright and Hulda Ruth (Favorite) Cortright in Clarence Twp, MI near Duck Lake. He graduated from Springport High School with excellent grades, after K through 8th grade at the 1 room Clarence Center School less than a mile from his rural home. He worked on the farm until marrying Marjorie Rose Blair in 1946 with whom he had four children, all of whom survive him. Jill Marie Cortright of Springport, Daniel Eugene (Jean) Cortright of Albion, Alan Leroy Cortright of Salt Lake City, UT, Debra Rose (Gregg) Lockwood of Albion; sister, Barbara Elizabeth Seger of Elizabethtown, KY; grandchildren, Malissa Eldred, Joseph Hanks, Amanda DeVall, Valerie Bradley and Jaclyn Wheeler; numerous great-grandchildren; a great-great grandchild as well as many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his ex-wife, Marjorie Cortright as well as by his grandson, Kevin Cortright.
During his lifetime, Derroll also did factory work and owned and operated an electronics repair business. He loved climbing up TV antenna towers. He served Clarence Township as an elected Constable, the latter of which he was very proud. Derroll often said that he wished he had pursued a career in law enforcement. He was an avid reader, Time Magazine in particular, and TV News viewer, following current events closely. Derroll very much enjoyed “discussions” of politics. He was a very intelligent man and could discuss almost any subject. Derroll was fiercely independent, opinionated, and determined. Until falling, likely not using his walker or cane at the time, he lived independently at Willow Tree Village in Eaton Rapids most of the last year and a half. Derroll simply had outlived the old farmhouse he had lived in for 70 some years following marriage. He refused to leave until there was no other alternative. Derroll loved that place and never wanted it sold out of his family. He was always particularly close to his grandson, Joseph, his wife, Amanda, great granddaughters, Jordyn and Aryn, great grandson, Dylan. There was much mutual love and affection between them. Grandpa took great pleasure and interest in Dylan playing summer baseball. He had helped coach Joseph’s team at that age, invoking fond memories for him. Dylan says it best, “He was my favorite Grandpa”. Derroll was always very interested in what everyone was doing. He wanted to be kept informed. Derroll made his own decisions with very little oversight, “I’m in control” was a common phrase. Flowers were a love of Derroll’s, all kinds, but particularly spring bulbs and summer Gladiolas. He planted patches of Daffodils all over his yard at his old house. Derroll greatly favored the natural world and the natural look and was always planting many trees throughout his lifetime. He would buy trees every year from the County Conservation Organization and he shared many with others to plant. His property was a haven for wildlife and they had little fear of him. Derroll absolutely loved spending as much time up north as possible. He greatly loved his kitty, “Lucky Girl” now cared for with love by his daughter Jill. Derroll will now be reunited with two other prior beloved kitties, Snoopy, and Buddy Girl aka (Buddy Boy) until he discovered it was a she.
Cremation has taken place through the Mills Funeral Home, Shelly-Odell Chapel in Eaton Rapids. A graveside service will take place 11 am on August 23, 2020 for family and friends at the Clarence Township Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to the family to help with funeral expenses or to the Pawsibility Rescue, 2200 W. Bellevue Hwy., Olivet, MI 49076. Please visit our website to place online condolences at www.millsfuneral.com.
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