Garth O. Erbes

Garth O. Erbes,
Garth O. Erbes,

REED CITY — Garth O. Erbes, 81, of Reed City, passed away on Tuesday, April 26, 2016, at his home.

He was born on Oct. 18, 1934, in Reed City, to Orie and Oneida (Niergarth) Erbes and attended Reed City schools, graduating in 1953. Garth was a rodeo stock contractor for more than 50 years. As a family unit, the Erbes' traveled up and down the state of Michigan and surrounding states as Buckin' "E" Rodeo Productions at many state fairs and other venues, making many longtime friends along the way. Toward the later years, Garth took pride in producing youth rodeos for Michigan 4-H Rodeo, Michigan Little Britches and Great Lakes Youth Rodeo. He was especially proud to work with youth, to teach them safety skills within the rodeo arena and to keep the sport of rodeo alive. Many youth with whom he shared his talents went on to the professional rodeo circuits such as Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association (PRCA) and Professional Bull Riders (PBR) Associations. Most recently he produced rodeos at the Double JJ Resort in Rothbury.

Garth married Rita McCall in 1980. She survives. Also surviving are his children, Susan Hart, of Oklahoma, Bill (Sheri) Erbes, Cathy (Joe) Johnston, and Rick (Robin) Erbes, all of Reed City, Denise (Marc) Erffmeyer, of Allegan, Tina (Don) Gibbs, of Indiana, Shane (Arika) Moore, of Oklahoma, and Steve (Frankie) Moore, of Virginia; his siblings, Vernon (Lavern) Erbes, Lamont (Nancy) Erbes and Garlein (Gene) Dadles, of Reed City, and Garol (Tina) Erbes, of Hersey; 20 grandchildren; 10 great-grandchildren; and one great-great-grandchild; many nieces and nephews, including Mike, Cindy, Garrett, Gavin and Ciara Erbes, of Big Rapids, who were considered to be among his children; and lifelong friends, Harold and Elaine Eckert, and former spouse Leona (Guy) Reichow.

As per Garth's wish, he has been cremated. A celebration of Garth's life will be held on Sunday, June 5, 2016, at the Double JJ Resort Rodeo Arena, 5900 Water Road, Rothbury, Michigan 49452. Cowboy Church service will be at 11 a.m., pig roast and Fun Day for children and adults to follow. In lieu of flowers, please consider memorials to the Reed City Church of the Nazarene or Heartland Hospice Memorial Fund.

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