Max E. Otis

February 9, 1923April 18, 2013
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Max E. Otis LCDR, USNR, Haslett

Age 90, passed away on April 18, 2013. He had long looked forward to meeting his Lord, Jesus Christ, whom he accepted as his Savior when he was 15. He was the 5th child born to Hazel & Philo Otis. He was born at home on Miller Rd, in Lansing, Michigan. He attended North School and then transferred to Branch School on Sherwood Rd, Williamston, when his family moved in with his Grandmother Lanphear during the Great Depression. Their farm was next to the Foote Cemetery, which his great grandfather had donated for his family and friends. Later they moved to a home on Lake Lansing Dr, Sunset Cove, east of Lake Lansing, and he attended the Haslett School until he graduated and enlisted in the Navy Flight program.

He served as a pilot in the Navy through WWII, Korea, and Vietnam. He retired after 28 years serving his country. He was a graduate of Michigan State University.

Max also served his Lord in many ways. He taught Sunday school, lead Bible studies for Naval Flight Cadets, Couples’ Bible studies, choir member, and Awana leader. He was very proud of his three sons and worked in the activities they were involved in: Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, (in Florida, Washington D.C., and Michigan), at church, and Music Boosters and Athletic Boosters at Haslett High School. He also enjoyed working at the Meridian Historical Village.

Max was predeceased by his parents, his brother, Clayton, and his 3 sisters, Lilah Honeywell, Alta Otis, and Mildred Otis.

He is survived by his wife, Beatrice (Hagenbuch) of 60 years; his sons: LCDR David E. Otis USN, Ret, CDR Phillip E. (Susan) Otis, USNR, and CAPT James E. (Mary) Otis USN Ret; his grandchildren: 1stLT Stephen Otis (Amy) USMC, Mary Beth (Eric) Kline, Becky (Duane) Beasley, Peter (Stephanie) Otis, James and Caroline Otis; and his great-grandchildren: Clive Wm. Kline, Oliver and Harrison Otis, and Lucy Beasley.

Also surviving are sister-in-law Eleanor Otis; nieces, Martha Jo Devlin, Mary Horstead, and Diane Otis; and other members of the family.

The funeral service will be held at 11:00 a.m. Monday, 22 April 2013, at Lake Lansing Baptist Church. The family will receive friends Sunday, April 21, 2-4 pm at Gorsline Runciman Funeral Homes, 1730 E. Grand River Ave, East Lansing and 1 hour prior to the service at the church on Monday. A private burial will be held. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made in memory of Max Otis to: Lake Lansing Baptist Church, 5960 N. Okemos Rd, E. Lansing, MI 48823; or to a charity of your choice. The family is being served by Gorsline Runciman Funeral Homes, East Lansing. On line condolences may be made at


  • Visitation Sunday, April 21, 2013
  • Visitation Monday, April 22, 2013
  • Funeral Service Monday, April 22, 2013

Max E. Otis

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Kelcey Wixtrom

April 21, 2013

Mr. Otis was an inspiration and a powerful man of God. I am so thankful for the ways he served his country and his church. Prayers be with you during this time.

Michael Hicks

April 20, 2013

Sounds like he was an amazing person! He did a lot for this country and I highly thank him for that. Prayers go out to his loving family!

Kathy Hicks

April 20, 2013

I never met him, but what an impressive man of God. May he rest in peace. I pray God surrounds the family with his peace and comfort.

Ralph Morr

April 20, 2013

Sorry to hear about Max's passing. Max was my Sunday School Teacher in the 40's. I have many fond memories.