Barton (Bart) R. Friese

Posted

(1/30/1943 - 1/12/2020)

Barton, 76, of Sun City AZ, formerly of Jackson, MI passed away unexpectedly yet peacefully on Sunday January 12, 2020, surrounded by his three children, his loving partner Stephany Malone, and several close friends. He suffered a stroke during scheduled vascular surgery and never regained consciousness.

Bart was born in Wolsey, SD and spent his youth across numerous midwest cities. He ultimately settled in Jackson, MI and graduated from Jackson High School in 1961. Bart went on to receive degrees from Jackson Junior College, Michigan State University, and Florida State University. In addition to a 15-year career with Consumers Power Company (now Consumers Energy), Bart and his first wife, Linda (nee Seltmann, now Furgason) owned Brail Dry Cleaners, Winzeler Dry Cleaners, the Friese Parlour, and together with the free labor of their children, meticulously restored the John O. Gilbert home in the Jackson area.

In the mid-90s, Bart relocated to Sun City, AZ with Anna Willoughby, where they enjoyed everything about the desert Southwest...numerous dances and parties with the German American community, refinishing multiple area homes, and countless road trips in their 25+ year relationship. Anna passed away in 2016.

In recent years, Bart, Stephany and their close-knit group maintained an impressive social calendar full of dances (rock & roll and polka), concerts, German American club activities, travel, happy hours, home projects, and exercising at the local recreational center right up to the days before his passing.

In addition to Stephany, Bart is survived by his siblings Dwayne Friese of Jackson, MI and Gwendolyn Fouss of San Antonio, TX, and his children Lainchen Friese of Chicago, IL, Tanya Friese of Scottsdale, AZ and Brent Friese, his wife Julie, and their children Stella and Clark, of Milan, MI.

The family will host a celebration of Bart’s life in Sun City in early February and a gathering in Michigan later this summer.