Obituary: John Lulich, 84, formerly of Shelby.

May 3, 2016
John K. Lulich

John K. Lulich

John K. Lulich, 84, formerly of Shelby, passed away on May 1, 2016 surrounded by his family. John is survived by his wife Kathleen (Walsh) and his children Lawrence (Ingrid) Lulich, Mary Lulich (fiancé Edward Beere), Kathleen (John) Globensky, Patricia Lulich and Elizabeth Lulich and his grandchildren, Andrew, Audrey, Alaina, Sarah, John, Jack and Ben. He is predeceased by his son Michael Lulich. Kathleen and John were married on May 22, 1954 at Holy Family Church in Ontonagon, Michigan and would have celebrated their 62nd anniversary.

John was born on February 12, 1932 in Bergland, Michigan to Marko and Yaga (Smolcich) Lulich. His older siblings are Mary (Wayne) Borseth and Marko (Madelyn) Lulich and his younger siblings are Betty (Ray) Rigoni, Barbara (Brian) Cook and Bill (Coco) Toomey. John graduated from Bergland High School and served in the United States Navy aboard the U.S.S. Intrepid prior to graduating from Michigan State University. John’s professional career began as a high school teacher and coach at Warren Lincoln High School until he began his career in the lumber business in 1967. After running a retail lumber yard in Wisconsin and a sawmill in Wyoming, he and Joe Chaput founded Oceana Builders Supply in Shelby, Michigan in 1971. There he taught his children the values of hard work and service, with his late son Michael eventually taking over the business.

John Lulich served as the president of the Shelby Board of Education, president of the Michigan Retail Lumber Dealers Association and served on the Lakeshore Hospital Board, but his primary devotion was to his family. John and Kathleen raised six children and fostered faith, education and self-reliance in their children. In retirement John and Kathleen traveled extensively throughout Europe. John was generous, trusting and accepting. His lifetime interests were fishing, hunting, golfing, woodworking and the game of bridge. He loved to sing, dance a polka, have a good laugh and he particularly enjoyed the company of friends and family. John was proud of his roots in the Upper Peninsula and did more than his share to keep the game population in check.

A memorial mass will be held at noon on Thursday, May 5 at St. Paul the Apostle Parish, 2750 Burton St. SE, Grand Rapids, 49546. The family will greet relatives and friends one hour prior to the service. If one wishes, please consider making a memorial donation to the Alzheimer’s Association by visiting

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