Covell Funeral Home

312 Pine Street, Elk Rapids, MI


Stanley Burkett Holzhauer

August 28, 1925October 16, 2019

Stanley Burkett Holzhauer, 94, died at home on Wednesday, October 16th, 2019. He is survived by his wife of 65 years, Francis Elizabeth “Betty” Holzhauer; son Gregory Holzhauer and step-son, Otis Johnson; grandchildren Maike Pacheco and Andrew Holzhauer; two great-grandchildren, Eva and Natalie Pacheco; four step-grandsons, Nathan, Kirpal, Yusuf and Qayyum Johnson; his brother, Marvin Holzhauer, sister Genevieve Schmidt, and sister Marthalee Wuebbels; as well as many close friends. Stan was born on a hot and humid day, August 28th, 1925, to Martin and Olinda Holzhauer in Breese, Illinois. He weighed in at 13 lbs., 2 oz. His parents were farmers, using horses and mules in the fields, without electricity, indoor plumbing or running water. After graduating from high school in Breese in 1943, he joined the Navy during WWII. His military service included landing in the 5th assault wave with the 5th Marine Division at Iwo Jima where he saw the flag raised on Mt. Suribachi, participating in the liberation of the Philippines and being present in Tokyo Bay when the peace treaty was signed, ending the war. He had the unforgettable experience of walking on the land where the city of Hiroshima was destroyed by the atomic bomb on Aug. 12, 1945. He attended Illinois State University at Normal on the GI Bill, receiving a B.S. in Education and later an M.S. in Education Administration and an M.S. in Science Teaching from Illinois Wesleyan University. He did additional graduate work in genetics at the University of California, Berkeley. After teaching biology in the Bloomington Illinois Public School System for 18 years, he became the Dean of Students for 12 more years until retirement in 1980. His peers voted him as the Outstanding Dean of Students in the State of Illinois in 1977. He married Betty Klemm Johnson on June 24th, 1954. They were married for 65 happy and wonderful years, always together at home, travel and work. He and Betty hosted numerous foreign exchange students who continued in relationship with them throughout their lives. They also sponsored a Romanian 7th grader, supplying his needs through his master’s degree. Stan moved to Northern Michigan in 1980 to pursue his interest in agriculture and nature. Family, gardening, bird watching, woodcarving, genealogy, photography, cross-country skiing and traveling the US and many foreign countries enlivened his life. In Michigan, he served on the Munson Hospital Corporate Board, Grand Traverse Regional Community Foundation and the Milton Township Planning Commission. He was a Master Mason, Elk Rapids Lodge and a member and elder of the First Presbyterian Church, Elk Rapids. His passions were teaching the Old and New Testament, conducting mission trips to serve the indigenous people of mountain villages in Mexico and helping others in need. His favorite Old Testament verse was: Choose this day whom you will serve, but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord (Joshua 24:15). Funeral services will be held on Monday, October 21, 2019 at 10:00 a.m from the First Presbyterian Church, 404 Spruce Street, Elk Rapids with Pastor Jim Porter officiating. Burial will be held at Milton Township Cemetery. Contributions in Stan’s name can be made to the Mission Endowment Fund or the Armonia Designated Fund c/o First Presbyterian Church of Elk Rapids.


  • Mission Endowment Fund
  • Armonia Designated Fund


  • Funeral Service Monday, October 21, 2019


Stanley Burkett Holzhauer

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Jan and Pat McNerney

November 3, 2019

Stan was a one-man welcoming committee. He stopped by soon after we moved into our summer cabin, some 26 years ago. He extended a hand in friendship and it meant a lot to us. He shared with us some of the history of Elk Lake and its residents. Our fondest memory was having him teach us how to cook morels. This gentle, smart, loving man has left a crater. Betty, you were a wonderful life companion to Stan. We are sorry for your loss.

David Perkins

October 28, 2019

Betty, Greg, & Otis,

I was saddened to learn of Stan's passing today via of BHS Class of 1963 website. I will always remember Stan as one of my favorite teachers while @ BHS. He is one of the main reasons I became a teacher myself (retired in 2000). I always looked forward to going to Biology class because Stan had a way to engaging & motivating every student. At 2nd Pres., Stan was also a spiritual mentor and friend to many of us who got to know him outside the classroom.

He will be dearly missed but never forgotten.

David Perkins
3 Mashie Court
Woodridge, IL 60517

Robin Farmer - Haddock

October 20, 2019

My family knew Stan and Betty from our long time Michigan summers at Rex, and I found out they spent many years in Bloomington, Illinois during the time my daughter Kelley and I lived there. Kelley and I would drive together to Michigan to see Grandma and Grandpa (Bob and Gina Farmer), and my favorite story was when Kelley was about 4. We drive up in May (Memorial Day weekend), Kelley notices the Holzhauer garden (especially the Scarecrow when the rows of corn were up to his ankles) and then when we return in August that same year, she's loving Rex Terrace Rd and 4 year old Kelley looks for the garden and says, "look Mom the scarecrow shrunk"! we could only see the scarecrow's neck and head.
That garden and that scarecrow were a big part of our Michigan trips for quite some time, and all the Farmer's loved Stan and Betty and the Holzhauer family! Our thoughts are with you!

Tom Overbeck

October 20, 2019

I will miss the days of Stan and I trading lake trout or steelhead for sweet corn from his garden. I always thought I was getting the better deal. What a beautiful man. My heart breaks for Betty and family. God Bless!

Linda Donaldson

October 19, 2019

Betty and family I'm so sad to hear about Stan. He was such a great person and friend. Praying Gods peace and comfort for each one of you. ( I use to work for Dr. Hoadley). Linda Donaldson

Sue Holzhauer Miller

October 18, 2019

Stan was known by Buzzy by his family in Illinois. He was such an amazing person, always learning & trying new things. An extremely gifted wood carver. A true man of faith and a patriot who was proud of being an American. Having a strong, brilliant wife that seemed so well suited to each. My deepest sympathy to you, Betty. Rely on your family, faith and friends to make it through this difficult time knowing he was doing what he loved when God called him home. A blessing that you were able to share so many years together. Sue