Brenda Lee Simpson

Age 63, of Grand Ledge, passed away into the care of our Lord on Thursday, December 6, 2012.  Brenda was born February 7, 1949 in Manistique, Michigan, the youngest child of William Rosenthal and Engaline (Hammermeister) Rosenthal.  Brenda was a retired Office Supervisor for the State of Michigan.  Brenda moved to the Lansing area shortly after graduation from Engadine High School in 1967.  In 1965 Brenda was Miss Naubinway and the youngest contestant at the Miss Upper Peninsula Pageant.  Brenda was Recording Secretary of the Eaton County Democratic Party and eagerly volunteered for Party activities.

Honest, unpretentious, selfless and open; Brenda made countless friends. Brenda had many interests ranging from antiquing, basketball games, bowling and old cars to her beloved cats. She attended all of her Grandchildren’s sporting events.

For 44 years Brenda’s home was the Lansing area, but her attachment to her childhood and birthplace, the Upper Peninsula, was always strong.  Brenda always considered herself a “Yooper” at heart.  Brenda loved family gatherings and strove to attend as many of those events as possible.  Brenda was devoted to her family and friends and her loving memory will be with them forever.

Brenda was predeceased by her son Timothy French, granddaughter Angel Hoppes, her parents, former husband Tom French and several uncles and aunts.

Brenda is survived by her loving husband of 22 years Cal Simpson, daughter Angela (Dave) Laidlaw of Portland, granddaughter Jenna Hoppes of Portland, grandson Cole French, stepdaughter Jeri (Robert) Stowell of Byron Center, stepgrandchildren Abbie and Adam Stowell of Byron Center, Dave Jr. (Meg) Laidlaw of Muskegon, Michael Laidlow of Indianapolis, Beth Laidlow of Saginaw and Andrew Laidlaw of Portland, sister Diane (Abdulbari) Ansari of Buckingham, Virginia, brother Stanley (Lou) Rosenthal of Virginia Beach, Virginia, many nieces, nephews, aunts and cousins and countless friends.

The funeral service will be held at 11:00 a.m. Friday, December 14, 2012, at the Estes-Leadley Greater Lansing Chapel. The family will receive friends from 5-8 p.m. Thursday at the funeral home. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Capital Area Humane Society.

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16 Messages to “Brenda Lee Simpson

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Barb & Len Poma
December 8, 2012 at 9:05 am

Our thoughts and prayers go out to her family.

Howard Pizzo
December 8, 2012 at 9:38 am

Brenda was a special friend of mine. In any gathering she was the one person I looked for to greet me with a smile and an encouragement. Brenda was very thoughtful and considerate of other’s feelings. I will miss Brenda but know that she is in a better place.

Darrell and Jacky Tennis
December 8, 2012 at 10:38 am

We are so grateful for Brenda’s friendship. She was always welcoming and always helpful. We will miss this special lady and forever remember her warmth and good humor.

Bonnie and Mark Smith
December 8, 2012 at 1:18 pm

We will treasure every memory of time spent with Brenda – and there are many. We are thankful to have had her in our life and know that she made our world a better place.

Tom Elmo
December 8, 2012 at 4:47 pm

My prayers are with the family.

Judy Polachek Sadler
December 8, 2012 at 6:41 pm

Words seem inadequate to express the sorrow felt by the loss of Brenda. Brenda and I shared classes from kindergarten through high school. With loving memories of those UP times…

Lisa Leonard
December 8, 2012 at 6:48 pm

Angela and Cal I pray for you to have strength and to hold dear all the wonderful times. Brenda was an incredible friend and woman. I can never remember a time that we did not laugh, sometimes in the face of some pretty tough situations. Her sense of humor and her genuine kindness to everyone will always remain my fondest memory.

Rich Ozanich & Family
December 9, 2012 at 11:02 am

I would like to extend sincere condolences to the family. Although the years have passed, I recall our laughs in English Literature class, and the basketball trips with Brenda and her fellow cheerleaders with all that hairspray for those 1960’s hairdos.

May she rest in peace.

Rich Ozanich – Class of “66
and Family

Frank & Liz McGowan and family
December 9, 2012 at 1:34 pm

Dear Angela and family-I had sent your card before hearing of this most difficult time. Know you are in our thoughts and prayers and will continue to be. Know you have been thru a lot the last few months and hang on to your memories and support of family and friends. We have many fond memories of times at the farm with your mom when you were growing up=We are sending hugs. Please give our best to Cal. Love, Frank and Liz

Jim & Sandy Legault
December 9, 2012 at 8:39 pm

Sandy and I were saddened to hear of Brenda’s death. Please know that you and your family are in our thoughts and prayers during these difficult times. Although High School was so very long ago the memories seem like yesterday. Brenda’s passing makes our short visit during this past summer’s Class Reunion even more precious. May God Bless and Keep you always.

Lizzie Reyes
December 9, 2012 at 11:14 pm

We had our fun on Thursday nites bowling at Pro Bowl. May you be at peace.

Delmar Kovar
December 10, 2012 at 11:38 am

Cal, Angela and family, I am so sorry for your loss. Brenda was truly a wonderful person. She definitively was all about family and her heart was still in the UP. I don’t think that she ever missed a family outing ever. What a sweetheart. I will always remember the summer back in the 60’s that we hung out spending a lot of time walking the beach at Scott’s Point. I was the only one that her mother trusted to take her off the yard. I wish that there was something that I could do to make it all better.

Frank & Liz McGowan and family
December 10, 2012 at 6:43 pm

Dear Angela and family, sent the card before I knew about your mom. Know you are all in our thoughts and prayers at this most difficult time and will continue to be. Know its hard to let go and you have had a lot to handle this year-may the memories and support of family and friends help. We have many fond memories of Brenda at the farm when you were growing up-many laughs and much delicious food. Take care of each other and love you, Frank, Liz and family

Sandy A. Gravely
December 13, 2012 at 12:19 am

My Uncle has lost his true love. My heart & soul prays for his strength to go on, as I’m sure from what he said and what is written she would want him to. Stay strong Uncle, the strength & happiness you formed together is what she would want you to keep. Stay strong Uncle, you have for a very long time. She would not want you to stop now.

I love you Uncle Calvin and I’m here if you ever just want to talk forever about whatever!! All my love, SANDY 253-380-3784. 253-967-6371.

Sandra Butkovich
December 13, 2012 at 2:17 pm

My condolences to Brenda’s family. Brenda and I played together as tots before kindergarten in the wooden school house with Mrs. Collins even. She was my neighbor across the street from the big white house in Engadine where we lived. We would string pretty cornstarch beads and make eatable jewelry. Although we lost touch over the years, I was delighted to see her again at the school reunion in Newberry this past summer. She seemed as beautiful as ever!

Dea Lawrence
December 14, 2012 at 8:35 pm

Brenda was a bright spot at the DOE. It was great to know her and share laughter with her. Heart felt thoughts go to Cal and Family


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