George Michael Weitzel

Grand Ledge, Michigan

George Weitzel passed away December 29, 2021, at the age of 89. George was born April 28, 1932, in McKeesport, Pennsylvania, to George Sr. and Betty Weitzel.

George proudly served his country in the Korean War where he was staff sergeant and was awarded a medal of valor for his service. After returning from the war he married Vivian Barazda and moved to Michigan to work in the auto industry, and start a family. George worked for Ford Motor Company, and LTV aerospace before pursuing his political ambitions. He worked in the Michigan legislature for many years and was the director of the senate staff. Following retirement from the state of Michigan he served as Watertown Township Trustee until his final retirement in 2016.

George was known for his sense of humor, storytelling, and always being impeccably dressed. He enjoyed spending time with his family and was an avid reader.

George is survived by his two daughters, Leslie (David) Whittaker and Janet Weitzel; grandsons, Ryan Whittaker, Brandon (Natasha) Whittaker, and Jordon Goostrey; and great-granddaughter Everly Whittaker. He was preceded in death by his parents and his wife of nearly 50 years, Vivian Weitzel.

There will be a private funeral ceremony in Lansing before his final interment in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

In lieu of flowers donations can be made in his name to McLaren Hospice or Eaton County Palliative Care. Arrangements are by the Estes-Leadley Greater Lansing Chapel.

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11 Messages to “George Michael Weitzel

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Tami Costello
December 30, 2021 at 7:21 pm

Leslie, Janet and families…my heart is with you all. Knowing George enriched my life in ways he may have never known, he was the most precious man I have ever known. To watch his love for you girls and his grandchildren warmed my soul. Lifting you all up in prayer.

Yolanda J Jean
January 1, 2022 at 10:32 am

Leslie, Janet and family. It was such a honor to know your father George. He had a generous attitude about life, and love. He was so kind to everyone he met. He never let anything slow him down from attaining what he wanted. He had the most determined will to live. He told me to learn something new every day. I loved listening to him tell me stories about life. My favorite story was his love story of meeting your mom. He said she was the beautiful woman he ever met. He would pause as he told the story of how they met and how he watched her eat in a diner. When he paused I could see he was right back in that diner all over again reliving the moment of first seeing her and being in awe of her beauty. I remember asking him well what did you say? He shocked me by saying nothing he watched her leave!! He told me he found out where she worked and took and emptied out his savings and made an accountant where she worked at the bank so he would have a reason to talk to her. He said it turned out she sharpend pencils for his father. I loved hearing him tell that over and over. Each time he would pause about warching her eat in the diner ovetaken with his awe, at your mom being so beautiful..It was beautiful to see after all the years his love for your mom was so strong.My life was so much better for knowing your dad. He always had a encouraging word,for me. He shared his enthusiasm for horses with my daughter and they would bet on horses together. He was quick to share his knowledge and anything he knew to help someone else further themselves in life. He was a great man and such a inspiration to all. In life you meet people who leave such a mark on your soul that your forever changed. Your dad was that kinda of man. Sharing his love with everyone he met, leaving his mark not only in this world with his.accomplishments but leaving his mark on the souls of those he met. My prayers are with you girls and your families during these trying times. When you miss him, look in the mirror and smile because his legacy lives on in you both. It was such a pleasure to meet you girls and watch the interactions and selfless love you had for each other.

Alison beck
January 1, 2022 at 4:41 pm

RIP George. Janet and Leslie remember all good times spent with your father!

Ken Mitchell
January 1, 2022 at 7:33 pm

I started my political career as a newly elected township trustee. George took me under his wing to teach me how government should work. He was consistent that you must always do the right thing for the people we represent. I’ve kept his words of wisdom with me as I moved up to County Commissioner after serving 18 yrs with George as a fellow Trustee. I talked to George many times, asking for his thoughts on different issues. I always felt that he gave me sound advice. The last time I was able to talk to George it was obvious he was having great difficulties. I did most of the talking and shared with him my trials and tribulations so that he could enjoy the conversation without making it frustrating for him. I called his cell phone several times and left VM’s that I hoped he was receiving. George was a great man. He was my mentor. I owe him a lot. I will miss him.

Mary Kotaras-Flesor
January 1, 2022 at 9:54 pm

Dear Leslie: My deepest condolences to you and your entire family on the loss of your dear father, George . As you know, George and I have been friends since first grade. I have missed our conversations when we reminisced about the funny thing s that happened during our youth. We had so many laughs about them. I have missed him and pray that he is now at peace with your Mother. May his memory be eternal. Sincerely, Mary.

Mary Kotaras-Flesor
January 1, 2022 at 10:24 pm

Dear Leslie: My condolences to you and your entire family on the loss of your dear father, George. As you know, George and I have been friends since first grade at Oliver School in Duquesne, Pa. We had more fun reminiscing about the people that we knew and all the strange things that happened in our school days. I have missed our conversations in recent years since his illness. George was a dear friend that always loved his Aunt’s burnt chocolate chip cookies. I pray that he is at peace with his dear Vivian …may his memory be eternal. Mary

Marilyn Maloney
January 3, 2022 at 7:48 am

George was a great friend to me from the time I began work at the Michigan Senate Democratic Staff in 1976. We loved discussing politics, government and books. I learned many things from him. I shall never forget his many kindnesses to me. May he Rest In Peace.

John Wiesner
January 3, 2022 at 9:29 am

Janet and Leslie
George was the best neighbor I ever had. I rememer fondly all the good times Vicky and I had with your father and mother. He truly was a Good Man.

Kaye Persell
January 4, 2022 at 7:59 am

I had the privilege and pleasure of being friends with George during my tenure working for the Michigan House of Representatives. He was always a gentleman, full of knowledge and eager to be of assistance. Janet, your Dad was a good friend and may he rest in peace. My condolences to you and your family.

Debbie Calcaterra
January 4, 2022 at 12:44 pm


We were saddened to hear of your loss.
Our condolences to you and your family during this difficult time.
We pray that your memories will sustain you and carry you and give you strength in the days and weeks ahead.
The Calcaterra family.

Christy Sochay
January 6, 2022 at 9:39 am

I met George as a member of the Watertown Township staff. He was someone I enjoyed talking with and he was a wealth of great stories. We often discussed the books we were reading and traded recommendations; in fact, one of my favorite books is one that he loaned me to read. He remembered the names of my children and thoughtfully, with genuine interest, asked for updates about them. I have missed our conversations since his retirement as a trustee. My condolences to your family.


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