John Philip Hostetler

December 3, 1932December 15, 2018
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Phil Hostetler age 86 passed away peacefully at this home on December 15, 2018 under the loving care of his wife and Oaklawn Hospice. He was born December 3, 1932 in Logansport, Indiana the son of Bertram and Helen (Dalzell) Hostetler. Phil served our country in the United States Air Force. He earned his PhD in experimental psychology at Purdue University and served as a Professor of Psychology at Albion College for 35 years until his retirement in 1999.

He was interested in hypnosis and while on sabbatical at Stanford University, he conducted hypnosis research with Dr. Earnest Hilgard. He was also very interested in fitness, teaching courses like Health Psychology, and with his wife Sharon, he taught the interdisciplinary Mountain Wilderness course in the mountains of Colorado for 10 years. While on another sabbatical and leave of absence, Phil spent one year in Cape Town, South Africa at the University of Cape Town teaching classes and conducting psychoneuroimmunological research with sangomas in the townships surrounding Cape Town.

For 20 year’s Phil served with his wife Sharon, as a volunteer EMT for Albion Ambulance Service. They also gave the Albion Community 34 years of instruction in CPR and First Aid. He was an active volunteer for assisting with Kids Cardiac Life Support for the elementary schools in Albion.

His faith journey played a big part in his life; he participated in the Walk to Emmaus in Jackson, and then worked many sessions after the one he attended. He was actively involved with many aspects of the Albion United Methodist Church, playing bass guitar in the praise band, served on many committees, was an usher, a counter and he ran the soundboard. He loved playing pick-up basketball until his joint replacements kept him from playing. He continued having fun by playing vigorous games of ping-pong with his friends at the Forks Senior Center. Always the optimist, Phil had a great sense of humor. He would smile and laugh easily. He always saw the best in people and sought to encourage them. He loved his extended family and enjoyed challenging them to competitions.

Phil leaves to cherish his memory his loving wife and best friend of 46 years, Sharon and children: Lori Hostetler of Indianapolis, IN, Annie (Stephen) Hostetler-Notman of London, England, Cynthia (David) Herriman-Baird of Battle Creek, Susan (Bryan) Herriman Ryan of Raleigh, NC, Rebecca (Paul) Hostetler Hecker of Wheaton, Il, Dawn (Jon) Herriman March of Grand Rapids, David (Linda) Herriman of Caledonia, Kurt Hostetler of Muncie, IN; 15 grandchildren and 2 great-grandchildren. His parents and a brother, Robert Hostetler, preceded Phil in death.

Phil’s family will receive visitors in Fellowship Lounge at the First United Methodist Church, 600 E. Michigan Avenue, Albion on Saturday, January 5, 2019 from 2 to 4PM. The Celebration of Life Service will be on Sunday, January 6 at 2:00PM in Wesley Chapel, First United Methodist Church.

Memorial contributions to honor Phil may be made to the First United Methodist Church

Arrangements entrusted to J. Kevin Tidd Funeral Home, 811 Finley Drive, Albion, Michigan 49225.

To leave online messages of condolence, please visit


  • Visitation Saturday, January 5, 2019
  • Celebration of Life Sunday, January 6, 2019

John Philip Hostetler

have a memory or condolence to add?

Steve Gaffield

December 23, 2018

Thank you, Phil, for introducing me to the mountains and for your ongoing inspiration in life. Sharon, you and your family are in my thoughts and prayers.

Melissa Branch Glandon

December 21, 2018

I unfortunately knew Phil only briefly when I was in high school many years ago, but in those brief moments, he made such an impression on me that I am moved now to write this note in memory of him.

I remember greeting him on a number of occasions and seeing his quick, ready smile and the radiant warm from his eyes. Even then as I do now, I felt as though I had encountered such an amazing soul! He had a very real presence about him that he seemed to glisten with an inner Light. A rare individual, to be sure. I will miss his presence on Earth. Sharon and the Hostetler family have my deepest condolences and I will all of you in the Light during this time.

Dolores Manthei

December 20, 2018

I knew Phil for a long time,I worked with him and Sharon on the ambulance service for
20 yr. He was a caring person and did so much for the community . he will be missed by
every one that knew him.
My prayer are with his family

Dolores Manthei

Martin Hoffmeister

December 20, 2018

What a wonderful man and mentor. I will be ever grateful for his help and guidance in my educational journey, particularly letting me borrow his U of M library card for the whole year! My prayers and deepest sympathies to his family and friends. God's Blessing, Mitt Hoffmeister

Tom Brown II

December 20, 2018

dear Sharon and family of Phil , What a blessed life of ministry to all that Phil led! It meant a lot to be welcomed by both of you when we came to Albion in 1997. His active service to all in our community and the world blessed everyone, from the youngest children in Kids Cardiac to the oldest at Forks Senior Center and our church families, too. Love and faithful memories to all of you. Tom Brown II and family

Terry Diane DeWeerd

December 20, 2018

We have known Phil and Sharon for many years, as neighbors, competitors (basketball and ping pong), as church members and as friends. Phil's picture says it all. What a fun introspective and involved person he was. He always had time for people. His beliefs were strong and he would readily share them. I feel very privileged to have received his sharp elbows playing basketball and his ability in ping pong to slam ambidextrously and then smile at you. He was a good friend to many people and will be greatly missed. Phil was a gentleman and kind to all he knew. He touched many lives and was a humble human being. Our prayers and blessings to Sharon and the family.

Colleen Verge

December 19, 2018

Phil always had a twinkle in his eye. I loved sharing lunch with him at Rotary. It was a pleasure to know him.

David Abbott

December 19, 2018

I didn't have the privilege of knowing Phil well as he had retired a few years prior to my appointment at Albion College. On every occasion we did meet, I was always impressed by Phil's warmth, infectious smile and a unique and ever present sense of humor. After our conversation, I always walked away with a smile and feeling better that day from our interaction. He will be greatly missed by those that knew him and I send my deepest condolences to his wife Sharon and their family.

Ronald Bradley

December 19, 2018

I was in his CPR class when I first volunteered for Albion Ambulance. It was fun working with both him had his wife there. Rest in peace.

Thomas Hunsdorfer

December 19, 2018

Phil was a generous, humble person who contributed to the betterment of the greater Albion community in many ways. He served on the board of the directors of the Forks Senior Center for many years and helped with numerous health and first-aid programs that made life better for countless people, young and old. He was a great servant leader who cared deeply about others.