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Obituary for Janice Elaine Ferris




Janice Elaine Ferris, of Portland, Michigan, aged 86 years of age, passed away peacefully and went home to be with her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, on Wednesday morning, December 6, 2023.  Janice was a beloved daughter, sister, wife, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother.  She was born in Portland on April 18, 1937, to Homer and Thelma (Kinney) Peacock, was raised in this wonderful town, then lived out the rest of her life on farms in the country just west of Portland on Sunfield Hwy and David Hwy; a lifelong Portland resident.  Janice met and fell in love with her Portland High School sweetheart, Raymond Ferris, and married him in March of 1954.  The young happy couple quickly moved out to the Ferris Dairy Farm on Sunfield Hwy to begin their married life together and raise a family.  Janice and Raymond would have been celebrating their 70th year of marriage next March.  Janice was preceded in death by her parents, Homer and Thelma Peacock, and her baby daughter Debbie who was lost to a rare disease in January of 1954.


Janice was loved greatly, and will be deeply missed by her husband Raymond, her older brother, Bill Peacock (Rockwall, Texas), her 5 children Jeff (Jill) Ferris of Portland, Mark (Janis) Ferris of Grand Ledge, Zack (Amanda) Ferris of Portland, Stacey Ferris of Ionia, and Jennifer (Derrick) Simmons of Ionia.  She will also be sadly missed by her 18 grandchildren, and 27 great-grandchildren.


Janice was a devoted Christian her whole life and was an active member of the Portland United Methodist Church in her younger years, and later in life at the LeValley United Methodist Church in Ionia, Michigan.  During her entire adult life, Janice was a loving housewife and active/busy mother to all of her 5 children, while also handling most of the family farm’s financial bookkeeping. 


Janice loved children immensely and played a vital role in the Christian upbringing of many, many people, babysitting many children over the years.  She especially had a compassionate heart for many disadvantaged children who needed a loving home by raising a large number of foster children as well as adopting her daughter Stacey, who has been a blessing to the family ever since.


Janice was a loving person with an infectious laugh, that had a multitude of close friends.  She loved to visit with, travel with, and play games with many special friends such as Joyce McCrumb, Sylvia Krausz, Ardie Ferris, Joanne Hyland and many, many others from church and her Portland Class of ’55.  During her entire adult life, she loved to take the camper with her husband Ray to many places, including up to Crystal Lake in the summers, the Ionia Free Fair every year, Florida in the spring to visit her parents and her brother, up to Mackinaw City to visit Ray’s sister at the old Mackinaw Motor Lodge, and later in life down to Gulf Shores, Alabama in the winter.  Janice would also spend much time over many years with her and Rays beloved friends from the close-knit Portland Class of ’55.


Prior to sadly contracting the disease of Dementia about 10 years ago, Janice had many interests and hobbies, and was involved in a multitude of activities.  She loved to garden, bowl at the Wagon Wheel, play the organ, raise cute little poodles, spend time with grandchildren, volunteer at the local polls during elections, sewing, and listening to Gaither Gospel Music.  She made quilts for the Orange Township Thimble Club, was a member of the Ladies Auxiliary, and loved to bake/cook.  Later in life, she loved to take rides all over Michigan in the truck and back in the woods with the ATV, and make an occasional visit to one of the many casino’s around the state of Michigan (she could play a wicked game of penny slots that would last forever)….


All those that knew her were well aware of her propensity for collecting, with endless collections of peacock and Holstein cow decorated items all over the house.  She also has amassed one of the largest collections of Precious Moments around.


A viewing and visitation service will be held at the Lehman Funeral Home  210 E. Bridge St., Portland on Sunday, December 10, 2023 from 4:00 to 7:00 pm.


The funeral service will also be held at the Lehman Funeral Home on Monday, December 11, 2023 at 11:00 am.  Interment will follow at the Portland Cemetery, 950 E. Bridge Street.  A luncheon for fellowship and reflection to follow the services at the cemetery. Memories and messages of condolence may be shared at www.lehmanfuneralhomes.com. In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the St. Jude Children's Hospitals at www.stjude.org.

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