Covell Funeral Home

312 Pine Street, Elk Rapids, MI


W. Dean Bigelow

October 29, 1929July 18, 2020

A tribute from his granddaughter: Today my grandpa died. He would be 91 years old this October. He was born the day the stock market crashed in 1929. As the son of a mid-Michigan farmer, he knew the value of hard work. He loved Jesus and loved to sing his praises in a deep bass voice. He had an incredible mind for numbers and could calculate acres, studs, square footage, drywall, or any type of building material in his head in seconds. He loved 3 women in his life; Phyllis, the mother of his six children, Lorraine (deceased), co-parent, partner in business and soulmate, and Carol, later-in-life travel companion, sharing a deep love for church family and worship music. He is dearly loved by 36 grandchildren and 29 great-grandchildren.

We will miss you grandpa. Your gentle voice and tender heart, your love of us and your desire to be involved in our lives, your witty humor and always ready wisdom and comfort will be greatly missed. May you have time to sing your heart out to Jesus and finally find rest in the shadow of his wing. We love you and we will miss you... until we too will run to Jesus and live.

Dean is survived by his six children, Dennis Bigelow (Rebecca), Vicki Galloup (Sam Larson), Kimberlee McCarren (Patrick), Bradley Bigelow, Michelle Hoffmann (Mark) and Melanie Olson (Gerald) and their mother, Phyllis Bigelow. Dean is also survived by his wife, Carol, Carol's children, Celeste Brackob, Elise McKinch (Jack), Curt Brackob and Lorraine’s children, Jeff Martin (Adriana), Michael Martin (Michelle), Elisabeth Marcantel (Scott, deceased), Cindy Webb (Matthew) and James Martin (Shari).

The families will welcome visitors at Covell Funeral Home in Elk Rapids, Friday July 24, 2020, from 6-8 pm. Celebration of Dean’s life will be held, outdoors, Saturday, July 25, 2020 at 10:00 am at Kewadin United Methodist Church, Kewadin MI. A brief graveside service will follow at Maple Grove Cemetery in Elk Rapids.

Per state mandate, facial masks are required. Due to current circumstances, no luncheon will follow the service.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation, in Dean’s name, to the Arbor House of Traverse City, in honor of his daughter, Vicki, for her excellent care and the care of so many by the Arbor House staff. Thank you.


  • Arbor House of Traverse City


  • Visitation

    Friday, July 24, 2020

  • Funeral Service

    Saturday, July 25, 2020

  • Committal Service

    Saturday, July 25, 2020


W. Dean Bigelow

have a memory or condolence to add?

Linda Rosenberger Crowley

July 22, 2020

I am sad to learn of your father’s passing. He was a dear family friend and neighbor. I remember his beautiful deep, bass voice in the choir and many ‘Special Music’ solos in church. This is the only photo I have of your dad from my dad's slides. It looks like Christmas at the Embers.
My thoughts go back to shared family camping at Duck Lake, swinging in the barn, jumping on the trampoline, lots of bike riding with Kim. I would SO love to reconnect with all the family but am headed to Colorado for the birth of a new grandchild and care of her big sister. Blessings of comfort to all of you!


Learn more about the Bigelow name