Marva Evelyn Ziesman of Seffner, Florida, formerly of Ossineke and Alpena, Michigan was called to heaven on Thursday, Feb. 10, 2022 in Seffner, Florida, after a long and well-lived life. She passed away peacefully in the arms of her grandson Marcus, surrounded by family. Marva was born in Lansing, Michigan, but she always called the Ossineke/Alpena area home. She married the love of her life, Wilbert Ziesman in 1960 and they bought the Ziesman family homestead where they built their home and began their life together.
Marva had an infectious laugh and brought joy to those around her. She was a devoted, loving wife, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother and homemaker. Although she faced seemingly insurmountable health challenges. Marva treasured her years when she worked with Wilbert and her daughter Brenda to create the “Triple Z Ranch.” Although it started when Brenda was in 4-H, Marva and Wilbert would go on to become involved in the Alpena County Horseman’s club, the North East Michigan Horseman’s Club, The Northeastern Michigan Association of Quarter Horses, The Michigan Quarter Horse Assoc., and The American Quarter Horse Association. They spent 25 years raising, showing, and traveling to exciting places with their championship horses, including Canada. In addition, they began a breeding program during the years that their grandson Marcus lived with them and taught him the joys of competition and excellence in work ethic. Due to her health, Marva couldn’t ride the horses but she sure made certain that their horses were beautifully groomed and ready to show. She had amazing horse grooming tricks including putting cornstarch on the horse’s white socks to make them whiter. An award and trophy was created for Marva for the “Groom of the Year.” That award continues to be given to this day. Marva and Wilbert also enjoyed hunting, raising, and processing their own livestock and playing cards with family and friends as well as attending many euchre nights in the community. In 2013 Marva moved to her grandson’s home in Florida where the weather and love from her great-grandchildren kept her warm and busy. She was also a wonderful singer and could naturally play any instrument set in front of her. She spent her final years teaching her great-granddaughters Grace and Faith to play piano, treasuring the time with them.
Marva was a life-long member of Hope Lutheran Church where she faithfully attended and served until moving to Florida. There, she became a part of Reformation Church where her grandson and his wife served, helping to build that small country church into the fastest growing congregation within the Southern Baptist Convention, in the entire state of Florida. She quickly became known as “Gram” to all including both of the pastors and several nationally acclaimed speakers. She continued to spread her love and acts of service to many more homes.
She is survived by her daughter Brenda Hatley, son in-law Steve, her grandson Marcus and his wife Tiffany Simmons, four great-grandchildren, William, Grace, Faith, and David, sisters in-law Emma Liske and Bertha Ortlieb, sisters, Shirley LaBrecque, Beverly Spleet, Linda Cusick, Sharon Bruce, and brothers, James Fleck and Raymond Fleck.
Preceding Marva in death was the love of her life and husband, Wilbert Ziesman, her beloved mother and father in-law, Adolph and Alvina Ziesman, mother and father Allen Fleck and Melba Prezslawski, brothers in-law, Rudy Ziesman, Carl Ziesman, Arnold Liske, Emil Ortleib, sisters in-law, Francis Ziesman and Caroline Ziesman, sister, Ruby Babcock, brothers Dan, Allen, Thomas Fleck, and brother in law John Cusick.
Inurnment will take place at Hope Lutheran Church Cemetery in Ossineke, Michigan. A private celebration of life honoring Marva was held at Hope Lutheran Church.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the family.