Mable Mae Porteous


REED CITY — Mable Mae Porteous, 96, devoted wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2017, at Clark on Keller Lake Retirement Community in Grand Rapids.

Born Aug. 20, 1920, on a sheep ranch in Hatton Township in Clare County, Mable was the youngest child of W.R. and Harriet (Johnson) Hamlin. She worked her way through high school and college, graduating from Michigan State in 1942 with a degree in home economics and then taught at Oscoda High School.

In 1943, she married her college sweetheart, Capt. William L. Porteous, in East Lansing. The couple’s young relationship was depicted in the book " Love, War, and Polio" by Tim Bazzett. In 1948, they moved to Reed City which remained their home.

An avid supporter of education and her community, Mable was active for over 25 years in Girl Scouts, Cub Scouts and the Jewell Scholarship Loan Fund. She also was treasurer of the Reed City Hospital Guild, trustee of the Osceola County Community Foundation and trustee of the United Methodist Church. She was a member of the board of directors of the West Michigan Health Systems Agency. Mable was active in the Fidelis Circle at the Methodist Church and the Daughters of the American Revolution.

She received the Chief Osceola Award from the Osceola County Community Foundation for her volunteer dedication and was made an honorary faculty member at the Reed City Elementary School for her help with enrichment programs and technological needs.

In 2006, the Reed City High School library was renamed the William and Mable Porteous Academic Center in recognition of their over 60 years of leadership, philanthropy and support to education and schools in their community. The local depot also was named in honor of William and Mable and in 2008 they were named grand marshals for the Great American Crossroads Parade.

For many years Mable was a substitute teacher at the high school and her hobbies included making award-winning quilts.

She is survived by four children, Ruth (Thomas) Hamilton, of McLean, Va., William M. (Elizabeth Weber) Porteous, of North Andover, Mass., David (Joan) Porteous and Jane (Harold) Porteous Johnivan, of Reed City; 11 grandchildren, Carmeron Hamilton, Diane (Colin Meeks) Hamilton and Dawn (Levi Tracy) Hamilton, Laura (Paul) McMahon, David (Erin) Porteous, Mark (Elle) Porteous, Sarah (Paul) Clifford, Rachel Schimmels, Paul Schimmels, Hannah Porteous and Nathan Porteous; and six great-grandchildren, along with nieces and nephews. In addition, three foreign exchange students, Frank (Germany), Carol (Belgium) and Sayuri (Japan), spent time with the family.

Her loving and devoted husband of 67 years, Bill, passed away in 2010. Her five brothers, Adin, Willard, Harlow, Lloyd and Elmer also preceded her in death.

Visitation will be from 4 to 6 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 17, 2017, at the Reed City United Methodist Church. Services also will be at the church at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Feb. 18, with interment at Woodland Cemetery.

Remembrances may be made to the Mable Porteous Scholarship Fund at the Osceola County Community Foundation, P.O. Box B, Fremont, MI 49412 or the Reed City United Methodist Church, 503 S. Chestnut St., Reed City, MI 49677.