Neil Joseph Sanders

April 24, 1940 - June 14, 2006

     MUSKEGON, MICHIGAN -- Mr. Neil J. Sanders, age 66, of Norton Shores, died surrounded by his loving family Wednesday, June 14, 2006 at The Poppen Residence.
     He was born April 24, 1940 in Logansport, IN, to Neil and Pauline (Grusenmeyer) Sanders.
     A lover of outdoors, Neil enjoyed hiking and backpacking with his sons and friends and on Sierra Club service trips.  Neil’s interest in sports began with grade school football and continued with high school basketball, college wrestling, cross-country skiing and racquetball.  As a Peace Corps volunteer in Ecuador, he coached the Ecuadorian national wrestling team.
     After receiving his M.A. and Ed. Spec. degrees in counseling at MSU, he started his 33-year counseling career at Muskegon Community College. Neil was a founding member of the Muskegon Area Counselors Association.
     Neil’s love of hiking lead to attaining a number of Colorado’s 14,000 foot peaks.  For the last 10 years, Neil was an avid practitioner and teacher of yoga.
     Generous, kind and uncomplaining,  Neil will be greatly missed by his family and friends.
     He is SURVIVED by his wife, Jill; sons, Josh (Chantal) Sanders and John Sanders; grandson, Nikolaus Sanders; parents, Neil and Pauline Sanders; sister, Sheryl (David) Nielsen; nieces and nephews.
     A MEMORIAL SERVICE will be held 3:00 PM Friday, June 16, 2006 at The Walburn Chapel, Sytsema Funeral Homes, Inc., 1547 W. Sherman Blvd., (231) 759-8565, with the Rev. John DeBoer officiating.
     VISITATION will be held 5-9 PM this evening (Thursday) and 2-3 PM Friday at the funeral home.
     MEMORIAL CONTRIBUTIONS may be directed to the Foundation for Muskegon Community College Endowment Fund or the American Red Cross.
     Sign the on-line guestbook at
     Memorials:  Foundation for Muskegon Community College Endowment Fund or the American Red Cross
     Cemetery:  Norton Cemetery
     Visitations:  5:00PM to 9:00PM on June 15th, 2006 at Walburn-Sytsema Funeral Home, Inc.
                2:00PM to 3:00PM on June 16th, 2006 at Walburn-Sytsema Funeral Home, Inc.
     Services:  3:00PM at Walburn-Sytsema Funeral Home on June 16th, 2006 (6-16-06).