Edward Eugene Townsend

March 13, 1932 ~ October 24, 2020 (age 88)


Edward Eugene Townsend of Bath,

Passed away October 24, 2020 due to complications from the Corona Virus. Ed was born in Jackson, MI, on March 13, 1932, to Virgil and Lowine (Hamblin) Townsend. He attended Everett High School where he met the love of his life Roberta( (Bobbi) Jean and where he excelled as an athlete. He was on the 1950 State Championship Cross Country Team at Everett High School, placing 2nd overall. Upon graduation, he attended MSU on a Cross Country Scholarship. While there, he was the only Spartan to be on 3 MSU National Championship Cross Country Teams and 4 Big Ten Cross Country Championship Teams. After graduating from MSU with his Bachelor’s Degree in Education, he began his teaching and coaching career at Haslett High School in 1956. While coaching Track and Field at Haslett High School, his 1960 team won the State Championship. He also coached Haslett’s Track and Field Teams to 6 consecutive Ingham County Conference Championships. In 1963 he was offered a position at Eastern High School where he continued to teach and coach until he retired in 1993. Ed is a member of the Greater Lansing Area Sports Hall of Fame. He attained this recognition for being on the 1950 Everett Cross Country State Championship Team. He also was recognized by this organization as an assistant coach on the undefeated 1960 Haslett Football team, in addition to his accomplishments as an individual athlete. Ed has been a member of the Lansing Michigan Homing Pigeon club for over 70 years. He is a former President of the Michigan State 500 Mile Racing Pigeon Association and the Lansing Michigan Homing Pigeon Club. Ed loved his pigeons, this was more than a hobby, it was a dedication and love that he shared with his wife Bobbi. Many times, he would go out to talk to the pigeons and see who was mating with who. He also had many “battles” with the hawks trying to pick off his birds. Ed will be sorely missed by his fellow members. He was active with his birds up until the day he was hospitalized. Ed and his brother, Clayton, were also members of the Bath Lions Club. They were affectionately called “the Townsend boys”. They were always ready and willing to volunteer for various fundraisers like the Parade of Homes and the White Cane campaign. 

Ed is survived by his daughters, Jean (George) Hagy of Bath, Cindy (Tony) Ramirez of GA; sons, Robert (Jamie) Townsend of Bath, Thomas (Cheryl) Townsend of DeWitt; grandchildren, Heather (Andrew) Suttles, Jeremiah (Kimberly) Hagy, Lauren (Paul) Artino, Lindsey (Michael) Ray, Austin Townsend, Myia Ballard, Alexander Townsend, Brandon Townsend, Benjamin Anderson, Emily (Cedric) Smart; 12 great grandchildren; brother, Dave (Janelle) Townsend; sister, Mary (George) Price; sister-in-law’s, Beverly and Sue Townsend. He was preceded in death by his parents; wife, Roberta “Bobbi” Townsend; brothers, William “Bill” Townsend, Clayton Townsend and grandson, Chad Ballard.

Memorial service will be held at a later date. Arrangements were entrusted to the Mills Funeral Home, Shelly-Odell Chapel in Eaton Rapids. Those desiring may make memorial contributions to the Lakeside Chapel of Park Lake to the “Reach Out Program”, PO Box 245 Bath, MI 48808. To place online condolences please visit our website,


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