At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.
Muskegon Rescue Mission
1691 Peck St
Muskegon, MI 49441
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Life Story / Obituary
Mrs. Hazel Joselyn Bujak, age 93, passed away Sunday, August 28, 2016. She was born in Detroit, Michigan on July 2, 1923 to Louis & Ida (Pedersen) Berge and married Edward Bujak on March 5, 1943.
Hazel was proud of being 100% Norwegian. Her father lived in Norway above the Arctic Circle and came to the United States when he was 19. Prior to the U.S. involvement in WWI, he traveled to Canada in order to join the military. He fought in the trenches while serving in Europe. Her mother, also of Norwegian descent, was born on a farm in Minnesota and was the second oldest of fifteen children. Hazel was born in 1923 in Detroit, Michigan and remembers hardships during the Great Depression.
During high school, Hazel wrote on the school paper as a feature writer and composed the crossword puzzles. Throughout high school she had a straight A average and graduated summa cum laude. She married her high school sweetheart, Edward Bujak, at the age of 19. When Ed passed away on December 23, 2006 due to complications of Parkinson's disease, they had been married for 64 years.
World War II was a reality when they married and he soon left to serve in the U.S. Navy aboard an aircraft carrier, the USS Monterey. Interesting to note, Gerald R. Ford served on the Monterey as assistant navigator. Ed was involved in most major battles in the Pacific Theater. She welcomed him home in New York and was there for the ticker-take parade.
During the war, Hazel worked as a bank teller and bookkeeper and saved enough money to buy a house soon after Ed returned from the war. Church was a big part of her life serving as a Sunday School teacher, singing in the church choir, and encouraged five of her girlfriends to join the church. Four of them married members of the church. In later years, Ed and Hazel became God parents to the children of the couples.
Ed finished his tool and die apprenticeship in Detroit. Ed then worked on the development of the automatic pin-setter for Brunswick in New Jersey. Hazel was active in the Lutheran Church, being chairman of the Ladies Aid Circles and singing in the choir while Ed taught Sunday School.
In 1960, Hazel and Ed moved to Muskegon with Brunswick where he rose to the position of superintendent of the pin-setting plant. Hazel worked for 8 years as an secretary at Rhoades Engineering. At First Lutheran Church, they were very active with Ed serving on the Board of Deacons, Board of Trustees, Sunday School Supervisor, teaching Sunday School, and serving twice as president. Hazel was very active in the community and the church as evidenced by this listing of her involvements:
Ladies Aid Circles, Church Librarian (after creating a church library), League of Women Voters, Secretary of the Hackley Hospital Auxiliary, Secretary and Board Member of Friends of Art at the Muskegon Museum of Art, Secretary of the Friends of Hackley Library, Volunteer Secretary and Receptionist of the Muskegon Museum of Art, Board Member of the Muskegon Women's Club, 1960 Charter Member of the local Sons of Norway Lodge (was a member in Detroit since 1941), Brownie Leader, and Girl Scout Leader. While she was involved with the Muskegon Museum of Art, she went on many trips including tours of Finland and Russia. She took a history of art class at the college which included a three week art trip to Europe. On top of all this, Hazel was an accomplished writer, winning many contests with her entries. She won trips to Hawaii and Europe, a car, fur coat, and many other prizes.
A highlight in her memory is a 1965 trip to Norway with her parents and daughter, Britta, to celebrate the 76th birthday of Hazel's father and his twin sister. He had not seen her in over 50 years. Her pleasures in her life included "collecting", living on Bear Lake and enjoying the sunsets, swimming in Lake Michigan while the sun was setting, and hiking in the State Park, attending the symphony and events at the Muskegon Museum of Art.
Hazel and Ed were proud parents of their daughters Barbara, Jo and Britta; grandchildren Amy, Edward and Carl; great-grandchild Jessica.
Hazel recently expressed her faith: "My faith in God has been an important part of my life. I start the day with a Psalm 'This is the day the Lord has made, Rejoice and be glad in it'. God's creation is awesome from the universe to the human body and the variety of human fingerprints, birds' songs, snowflakes, leaves, etc., and the beauty of the sunsets, flowers, birds, butterflies, etc. God's power and omnipotence are a wonder, and his love sent Jesus, whose loving grace is a daily comfort, as is the Holy Spirit's guidance in my prayers and in understanding of the Bible, and the fellowship at church are important in my walk of faith toward the joy of heaven."
Ed was able to stay at home with Hazel's help until his death at 83 from heart failure. Hazel enjoyed living in her own home until age 92.
Hazel is survived by her daughters, Barbara Bujak of FL, Dr. Jo (Mary Jone Kominske) Bujak of Traverse City, Britta (Roy) Portenga of North Muskegon; grandchildren, Edward (Jordania) Granger, Dr. Amy Mosher, Carl Houts; great granddaughter, Jessica Mosher. She was preceded in death by her husband, Edward in 2006.
A Memorial Gathering will be held for Hazel and Edward Bujak on Monday, September 5, 2016, 5:00 - 8:00 pm at Clock Funeral Home - Muskegon with Rev. William Uetricht speaking at 6:30 pm. MEMORIAL: Muskegon Rescue Mission.