Fern Marie (Crower) Clifford, devoted wife, mother and grandmother, passed away peacefully Saturday morning September 18, 2021. Fern was born to Lucy and Joseph Crower on July 13, 1924, in Bay City, Michigan and made her home in Midland since the 1950s. Fern loved her big extended family. She loved reading, music, flowers, her houseplants, and butterflies! Through the years Fern had many jobs but some of her most treasured time was spent at The Ellen Shop (a women’s clothing store that was located in downtown Midland), working at Northwood in food services and taking her children to and from school and the farm every day. Fern was especially proud that she attended the Midland High School Completion Program in the 1980’s. She had a flair for fashion that delighted her and others into her nineties.
Fern was preceded in death by her favorite dance partner and loving husband of 72 years, Paul Clifford. Sisters Helen Hubert, Gertrude Killey, Fran Crower, Sister Mary David D.S.M., and brother Leo Crower have also passed away, as well as daughters-in-law Mary Ellen, Karen, Paula, Connie and Jan.
Fern is survived by children Cathy, Dave, Bernie (Bonnie), Dan, Pat, and Mary Clifford, her sons-in-law Steve Hammond and Denis Portier and by her beloved sister and brother-in-law Millie (Clifford) and Chet Pawloski, nieces Monica, Rose (Morris), and Mary (Dale) and nephews Fred, John, Don (Cindy) and Tom (Carolyn). Grandchildren Martin, Jason (Emilie), David (Claire), Carey (Abdulrahman), Heather, Amber, Augie, Matt, Joanna (John), Caroline (Jacob), Rachelle, Ellie (Everett) and Ben were a source of joy, as were her twelve great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild born this last year.
Fern and Paul became members of Blessed Sacrament Parish when they moved into town in the late 1990s. For forty years they belonged to St. Brigid’s Parish and school, which all six children attended through eighth grade.
Fern’s life will be celebrated with a Funeral Mass Wednesday, September 22, 2021 at 11 a.m. at Blessed Sacrament Church, 3109 Swede Rd, Midland. Fr. Rob Howe will officiate with internment in St. Agnes Cemetery, Sanford to take place at 2 pm. Visitation will be on Wednesday at the church from 10 am until the time of mass. Funeral arrangements are by Wilson-Miller. Personal messages of condolence maybe offered to the family at www.wilson-miller.com.
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