Lyle Edward McFadden, Sr.

Our beloved father, grandfather, brother, uncle, cousin, coach, mentor, and friend went home to be with the Lord on April 19, 2011 at the age of 73.  He was born November 30, 1937 in Lansing, MI to Paul and Esther (Johnson) McFadden. Mr. McFadden retired from General Motors, Fisher Body Division after 52 years of service. He was an assistant football and track coach at J. W. Sexton High School for 53 years. He was a lifetime volunteer in youth sports in the Lansing and Mid-Michigan area. “Mr. Big Red” stayed committed to make a difference, and that he accomplished.

Lyle was preceded in death by his wife, Frances McFadden in 1995; parents, Paul and Esther McFadden; brothers, Paul, Jr. and Fred McFadden, Sr.; and nephew, Steven McFadden, Sr. He leaves to cherish his memory, sons Lyle McFadden, Jr. (Linda), Bryan McFadden (Melissa), William McFadden, and step-son Roderick Sanders; grandchildren, Marcel, Marshon, Jazmin, Kiersten, Bryley McFadden, and Zahirah Sanders; brothers, Alfonso and Roland McFadden; sister, Marion Scott; and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends.

Friends may visit Mr. McFadden on Tuesday, April 26, 2011 from 2-4 and 6-8 p.m. at the Estes-Leadley Greater Lansing Chapel, 325 W. Washtenaw St., in downtown Lansing.  Home going services for Lyle will be held on Wednesday, April 27, 2011 at 11:00 a.m. at Trinity Church, 3355 Dunckel Rd., Lansing, with Pastor Robert E. Nicholson officiating.  Interment will follow at Chapel Hill Memorial Gardens.

Donations may be made to Hospice of Lansing and Eaton Community Hospice in memory of Lyle.  Condolences may be sent to the family at

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39 Messages to “Lyle Edward McFadden, Sr.

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Patrick Morris
April 20, 2011 at 4:23 pm

I had the greatest pleasure playing for, coaching with and being one of the nurses at Burcham Hills to take care of Lyle. It was a pleasure and honor to know such a great man and his passing is felt by many many people whom share your loss

Melanie Rogers
April 20, 2011 at 5:09 pm

My condolences to the McFadden family on your loss. Lyle was a great person and will be fondly remembered.

My son wrestled at Eastern at the same time that the twins wrestled at Sexton. At wrestling meets there would be a steady stream of parents and coaches who come up to greet Lyle as he was cheering on the Sexton wrestlers.

Geronimo Lerma III
April 20, 2011 at 9:13 pm

Mr. Mcfadden was a great man, He did not care what school you were from he would always give you advise as he did me in 1993 and 1994. I went to Everett and at track meets he would give me pointers in the shot put and discus. He always cared about kids and was a wonderful person. Thank you Mcfadden for everything you have done for all of us in school. You are one of a kind and will always be missed. my thoughts and prayers are with the Mcfadden family. God Bless

Mike Devlin
April 20, 2011 at 10:36 pm

Great man with a Big Red Heart! You made an impact on many lives! RIP Coach!!!

Jennifer L. Smith
April 21, 2011 at 12:04 am

My husband and I wish to convey our heartfelt sympathy and condolences to Lyle’s family for your loss. He was a friend of ours and, as you know, Lyle was an amazing person with a good sense of humor, concern for others, and lots of common sense. The world was a better place with him in it and he will definitely be missed. We pray the Lord grants you comfort and strength at this time.

Ed and Jamie Dickey
April 21, 2011 at 7:46 am

My thoughts and prayers are with Lyle Jr. and the McFadden Family in the loss of their father, grandfather, brother and a great coach and mentor to many.

David Gonzalez and Family
April 21, 2011 at 10:20 am

My thoughts and prayers are with the McFadden family. Mr. Mcfadden was truly a great man. He always greeted me with a smile. When I was done officiating a Sexton Wrestling match. He was always there for me with a smile and a hug. This was the same hug he had given me for the last 30 plus years that I had the pleasure of knowing him. He is gone, but he will never be forgotten.

Ray & Lydia Perez
April 21, 2011 at 12:05 pm

Our condolences to the McFadden family and friends. Lyle and I worked together at Fisher Body for many years and I will miss his great smile and friendship. God Bless

Terry Lowery
April 21, 2011 at 1:25 pm

Lyle will always be one of the most amazing persons I’ve ever met! He was the main man on 3rd shift Security at Fisher Body, and I was a tradesman on 3rd shift. He was for the common man in all aspects. Lyle protected the plant well as an obedient officer, and protected the common worker in a special way as well.

Our conversations often related to sports, but to GM-relating matters as well. Lyle was a professional at solving security problems in all aspects. His dealings were tactful, but with common sense. His wisdom was far beyond the normal for his position as the chief dispatch person at Fisher Body.

Lyle loved his family members as well as the multitude of youth that he trained and mentored at Sexton. He had a noticeable twinkle in his eye at any time he mentioned one of his athletes….and he mentioned many!

Your friend and brother eternally,

Thomas Stenske
April 21, 2011 at 2:31 pm

My prayers and condolences to the McFadden family.Lyle was my shotput coach at Sexton. I graduated in 1979 and saw him at many future sporting events. Lyle was a tremendous man. Everyone respected him. His gentle and friendly personality will never be forgotten. His influence will always be part of who I am. Truely he lived a life to be celebrated.

Tom and Taffie Majdeski
April 21, 2011 at 8:36 pm

A good coach, a good friend, and a great man! You will be missed.

The Majdeski Family
Francis, Tom& Taffie, Peggy & Rich

Allen Jackson Jr.
April 21, 2011 at 10:11 pm

Rest in peace to Sexton’s greatest man ever. Coach Lyle made us tough but he taught us how to care in the process, Love forever Coach…………..


Max Darling
April 22, 2011 at 8:06 am

It was a sad feeling to read of Lyle’s passing. He was a man with a smiling face, and a smiling voice to match. It was always a pleasure to talk to Lyle. On the darkest of days his personality made the day bright. I know he will be missed by all. You can bet he is making the heavens a brighter place with his smile.

Matt Beard
April 22, 2011 at 8:34 am

Lyle was the greatest person I’ve ever known. His impact on my life and the lives of many of the athletes he worked with is immeasurable. His presense will be greatly missed, but with a smile on his face he would have told each one of us to “get on with it, wimp!”

I believe the best way we can honor Lyle is through our service to others. Though Lyle would never had described it this way, he truly left a legacy of love.

Kevin Kevin
April 22, 2011 at 2:35 pm

I am honored to have the opportunity of playing for Lyle. He was special in every sense of the word.

Troy Villanueva
April 22, 2011 at 2:46 pm

I’m truly blessed to have had the opportunity to play for such a great man. He was a friend, as well as a coach. The TOUGHEST MAN IN THE WORLD will be missed.

April 22, 2011 at 2:51 pm

Brian and Melissa,
My thoughts and prayers are with you at this time.

Barb McCaffrey

gordon deshazer
April 22, 2011 at 4:55 pm

Love u coach when u say big red. U were the chief

Jason Browning
April 22, 2011 at 5:42 pm

Lyle was such a great person and I’m fortunate to have played for him. He was our coach, our friend, and he’ll be missed.

Jeffrey Armstrong
April 22, 2011 at 8:22 pm

Lyle was a mentor to my father and my brother before he mentored myself. In his lifetime, he left great lessons on how to be honorable, strong, and giving. The world has lost one of its great teachers. May you rest in peace. You will never be forgotten.

James T. Keyton Jr
April 22, 2011 at 10:54 pm

My Uncle Lyle always told me i was not tough enough to be a, “Big Red” I do not know if he was right or not but i do know that He was the finest “Big Red” that i ever met.

“Mac” as he was known by his close friends, had the innate ability to bring people together despite their differences or schools in which they attended. He was always smiling and encouraging others, giving rides, sharing food, loaning money, volunteering time, caring for others and planting seeds of Love.

Unc, believed in working and practicing to do things right. He always started with the basics and laid a strong foundation in them.
He taught out of love teaching everyone as if they were his own children. He certainly did it with all my family and my heartfelt prayers go out to Jr., Brian and William. GOD’S Peace to you all.
luv ya big cuz.

Lee Canady II
April 23, 2011 at 4:29 am

I had the honor of spending my high school years on the field with Lyle. While I unfortunately was never able to play, Lyle always made me feel encouraged and needed. I can’t tell you how many times I heard “Here comes wimpy Lee”, along with many other guys over the years, but he helped make me tough, just as he did with so many others. I look back on those years with great pride to this day, and Lyle’s impact can never truly be put into words. He was a fixture at Sexton, a legend, a mentor, and a man without rival. The tribe will never be the same without him. My thoughts and prayers go out to all of my big reds, past and present, and most importantly to the McFadden family. May God bless and strengthen you all, and rejoice in all of the memories this wonderful man left.

“Before Ali, there was me. I’m the toughest; remember that!”

Rest in peace, Coach. We love you!

Bryan L. Crenshaw
April 23, 2011 at 6:21 am

I was not a football player or someone who threw shot put and discuss, but had friends who were. Coach Lyle would always be there after school opening up the weight room in the basement. I heard from friends that he was a mentor and father figure to many. The Big Red family has lost a great person.


David Schmitke
April 23, 2011 at 10:50 am

Lyle was a beautiful person and a soul of gold. He will be missed. But now Sexton has an Angel in heaven to watch over them forever….. Rest in Peace Lyle

Ron DeLeon
April 23, 2011 at 3:08 pm

My thoughts and prayers go out to the McFadden family. This city has lost another Icon. Mr McFadden was so much more than just a football and track coach. He meant so much to so many and will be greatly missed. REST IN PEACE.

Bob Meyers
April 23, 2011 at 8:56 pm

The finest person I’ve ever known. I was truly blessed to have shared countless hours with him. We love you Lyle

Charles Scarborough II
April 25, 2011 at 7:44 am

I spent four years on the track team at sexton with coach and he was the original LIFE COACH. Never about winning on the field, it was about winning at life, he did not show you how to shot putt, he showed you how to be a man. R.I.P.

Ron Becker
April 25, 2011 at 12:33 pm

Words can not express what Lyle has ment to this community,Sexton and the Big Red Wrestling program. Lyle was the shining light behind all athletics in our community. He is the finest man and mentor I have known, I am honored to have been his friend.

Pauline Johnson-West
April 25, 2011 at 3:45 pm

To my friend you a very special person one who would alway love and care about because he alway care about thought he can in touch with he alway have time for you or any one who just needed a little love when you are blessed you just know it. you will be miss buddy GO BIG RED

John Hershey
April 25, 2011 at 4:15 pm

The quality I felt most in Lyle was his goodness, the way he carried himself and lived his values, of generosity, good humor, and a perfect sense of balance and judgment. He is due more than the community can ever repay, though he’d scoff at the idea.

Darnell Ishmel
April 25, 2011 at 7:59 pm

You were one of the finest, truest, and most consistent examples of manhood, mentorship, and fatherly friendship. So much more than a great athletic coach…indeed you were a life-coach…teaching us how to live….showing us how to give! Thank you for your life, your legacy, and your “tough” love. Farewell, good sir. You leave us much to cherish, memories…fond….manly deeds…so many character building moments. May we never forget! May we ever seek to emulate. Few have touched so many lives so indelibly. And now….we all must…”GET TOUGH!”

Donald & Linda Horton
April 26, 2011 at 1:57 am

Lyle was a dear friend. He had a great impact on me at GM. My wife and I were sadened to hear of his passing. He will be missed.

We want to express our prayers and warmest wishes to Lyles family. May God bless you and comfort you during this time of loss.

Gods speed Lyle. Rest in peace.

Rhonda Walker Walters
April 26, 2011 at 12:52 pm

First I’d like to express my thoughts and prayers to the McFadden Family. God’s grace is truly sufficient during this time of loss. I just had to drop a note to say how much I cared about your dad and your mom. Even in adulthood I always remembered his jolly laugh and fun demeanor. You guy’s truly had great parents and I’ll always cherish Mr. Big Red and the fond memories of him!
Brian, Lyle, William, and Rod may your dad’s life be honored by all he loved and cherished and may your heart’s be comforted by all you shared.
Love you all and definitely keeping the family in my prayers!

Fred Guy
April 26, 2011 at 5:11 pm

I grew up without a father in the home like many of my Big Red brothers and sisters. The positive impact that a man like Lyle McFadden had on his community will be felt for generations. For many of us Lyle was one of the first Men to take a genuine interest in all aspects of our development. Social, athletic, academic, etc etc. Lyle was more than a father, more than a coach, more than a volunteer. He was a hero.

Nobody else could get away with calling you a “wimp” and you’d feel good about it.

Nobody else could tell you to; “rub some dirt on it” when your injured and make you feel better.

As a teenager I wanted to impress Lyle. Now as an adult I want to be more and more like him. Lyle I love you…………thank you for taking an active roll in making me and 1000’s of other Men and Women. I wouldn’t be where I am today without you.

Thanks Coach. See you on the other side.

Garth, and Dear Lee Jackson & Family
April 27, 2011 at 6:01 am

Coach Lyle was not only a great coach but a great role model for our sons. He always had their best interests at heart. Coach Lyle will be terribly missed on and off the track. The Big Red Family has lost a GREAT ONE!!

Todd Hall
April 27, 2011 at 9:55 am

Coach McFadden was one of the must influential people in my life; not only in football but in life lessons as well. My condolences to the McFadden family.

Rest in peace, Coach.

April 27, 2011 at 11:18 pm


April 27, 2011 at 11:22 pm


Karl and Connie Wilson
April 27, 2011 at 11:33 pm

Life affords no greater responsibilty, no greater privilege, than the the raising of the next generation.Here is the test to find whether Lyle’s mission on earth is finished; if he were alive, it isn’t.

In speech,conduct,love,purity,and last but not the least character, Lyle has been a model for the Lansing community.It has been said,You can tell a tree by the fruit it bears.Family look around you and see,feel,touch,and hear this gentle giant footprints on generations to come.

For as the days of a tree, so will be the days of my people; my chosen ones will long enjoy the works of their hands
Isaiah 65:22 niv

How fast we learn in a day of sorrow!Scripture shines out in new effulgence; every verse seems to contain a sunbeam, every promise stands out in illuminated splendour; things hard to be understood become in a moment plain!

Lyle has passed the test and the torch. It is our time to serve.

May God bless you all


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