Cover photo for Linda Ryder's Obituary
Linda Ryder Profile Photo

Linda Ryder

July 20, 1944 — March 31, 2024

Linda Ryder

Linda Lou Ryder, 79, of Schoolcraft, MI passed away March 31, 2024. She was born on July 20, 1944, in Decatur Michigan to Lewis and Evelyn Gary. Linda graduated from Otsego Schools in 1962. She started working at Neil’s Automotive in Kalamazoo as a receptionist. During her time at Neil’s, Linda met James Ryder. Linda and Jim married on March 28, 1969 and became an instant family of 5, as Jim came into the marriage with 3 young children. Later, Jim and Linda, and kids welcomed a new baby and became a family of 6. 

Jim and Linda moved into a home in Schoolcraft, located next to Jim’s family. Linda quickly had to adapt to country living and raising a family. In 1973, she started working at the Upjohn Company. Linda worked there for 30 years before her retirement in 2013. After her retirement, Jim and Linda enjoyed traveling. The highlights of their travels were the visits to see children and grandchildren.

Throughout the years, Linda has supported 3 generations of Schoolcraft Eagles. She not only cheered on her children and grandchildren, but also many nephews, nieces and their children. Last spring, Linda was able to watch her great grandsons play Little League and start on their journey as Eagles. Linda also gave countless hours as a volunteer to the school. She was a very familiar face at athletic events taking tickets for over 20 years. She was also a “Popcorn Lady” on Friday mornings at Schoolcraft Early Elementary. Linda was a fan of any sport or activity her grandchildren participated in and was very proud of all their accomplishments.

Linda has been a very active member of Prairie Edge Christian Reformed Church for 55 years. She was very dedicated to the church and God and it became an important part of her life. Linda had a serving heart. She graciously served wherever help was needed.  She helped with Vacation Bible School, Sunday School, Fellowship and several other church activities. Linda loved being a part of a small group, where she developed very special friendships. For over 20 years, she also volunteered her Tuesday’s afternoons and an occasional Saturday, to 2nd Impressions Thrift Store. 

Linda was preceded in death by her husband of 34 years, James Ryder, and her dear sister, Roberta Jones. She is survived by her four children: Nancy (David) Steger of Schoolcraft, Jim Jr (Nancy) Ryder of Indianapolis, Jill (Robert) Johnson of Delta Township, and Dennis (Lisa) Ryder of Bryon Center.11 grandchildren: Jaime (Tanner) Sommerfeld, Justine (Hayden) Hageman, Matthew Steger; Delaney, Nick, and Megan Ryder; Connor (Brianna), Mara, and Elijah Johnson; Terry and Tyler Ryder. She also is survived by 3 great grandsons; Everett and Cole Sommerfeld, William Johnson and 2 newborn great granddaughters; Adaline Johnson and Ryder Hageman. She also is survived by a brother, Richard (Margaret) Gary.

In accordance with the family’s wishes public service will be held on Friday, April 5, 2024 at Prairie Edge Christian Reformed Church, 9316 Oakland Drive, Portage, MI, 49024, with a time for visiting beginning at 11 a.m. until the time of service at 12:00 noon with Pastor Bill Fernhout officiating. Linda will be laid to rest with her husband at Schoolcraft Cemetery during a private committal service.

Memorials made in Linda’s name may be directed to Centrica Care Navigators. Envelopes will be available at the church on the day of service.

While at www.amsfuneralhomes.com please take time to sign Linda’s guestbook and/or share a memory with her family.

The Ryder family is being cared for by the Avink, McCowen & Secord Funeral Homes and Cremation Society, 409 South Main Street, Vicksburg, MI 49097. 269-649-1697.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Linda Ryder, please visit our flower store.

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Visitation

Friday, April 5, 2024

11:00am - 12:00 pm (Eastern time)

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Funeral Service

Friday, April 5, 2024

12:00 - 1:00 pm (Eastern time)

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