Obituary of Janet A. LaFountain
Janet Aileen LaFountain passed away peacefully in her sleep in the early hours of January 22nd, 2022 in Adrian, Michigan at the age of 75 after a long battle with cancer and a recent bout of Covid and pneumonia.
Janet is survived by her husband of 53 years, David R. LaFountain of Blissfield, Michigan; her children, Rhonda K. Clark of Tecumseh, Michigan, Cheryl L. Howard of Pentwater, Michigan, and David B. LaFountain of Blissfield, Michigan; her sister Priscilla A, Gibbs Walker of Naples, Maine, her brother Frederick G. Gibbs of St. John’s, Michigan, and her grandchildren Jordan D. LaFountain of Clinton, Michigan, Ryan M. LaFountain of Tecumseh, Michigan, Jane A. Howard of Pentwater, Michigan and Jerad Warren of Golden, Colorado. She is preceded in death by her father Frederick W. Gibbs, her mother Donna L. Felton, and her sister Janice D. Gibbs.
Janet was born on April 23rd, 1947 in Frankfort, Indiana to Frederick and Donna Gibbs. Janet’s childhood was unique in that her family lived in South America where her father was a missionary. From 1956 until the family returned in 1961, the Gibbs lived in Guyana and Suriname with exotic family pets like a spider monkey, a sloth, a parrot, and various other native songbirds.
The family returned to the United States in 1961, where Janet began high school at Frankfort Pilgrim High School in Frankfort, Indiana. They later settled in Ellsworth, Michigan. Janet graduated from Ellsworth High School in 1965.
In November 1967, she met her future husband when her father was called to be the pastor of the Sault Ste. Marie Wesleyan church where David attended. They were engaged on Valentine’s Day of the next year. They were married on July 13, 1968 in Lansing, Michigan.
After they married, the young couple faced an early challenge when David was sent to Vietnam in January of 1969. But the couple persevered and their relationship endured the difficult separation. They were joyfully reunited for R&R in Hawaii less than a year later.
Once David returned, the couple moved to Monroe, Michigan, where they were blessed with their first child, Rhonda. On Janet’s birthday in 1973 she had her second daughter Cheryl, and finally they welcomed their son David In 1978.
Janet worked hard providing her children and grandchildren a safe and loving home. They remember her as a dedicated and selfless caregiver who was always devoted to meeting their needs.
Janet was beloved by members of her community. In addition to her role as the family caregiver, Janet was also appreciated for the time she spent as a ‘pastor’s wife.’ In recent years, she enjoyed spending a couple of hours with her friends at the Blissfield Senior Center assembling puzzles, playing bingo, and socializing, where many found her sweet and gentle disposition a joy to be around.
Janet loved cats, her garden and classic television. She also enjoyed completing jigsaw puzzles and recreational reading. She often triumphed over friends and family when they enjoyed playing card and board games together. Janet and David attended Zion United Brethren Church, where her presence will be missed.
A memorial service will be planned for later this year where all will be welcome to attend and celebrate Janet's life. In lieu of flowers, please send donations to St. Joseph's Health Foundation.
The family would like to thank Dr. Li Ding, Dr. Sara Taub, and all the wonderful staff at St. Joseph’s Mercy Ann Arbor for caring for Janet over the last eight years. They also want to extend their gratitude to the staff at Hickman Hospital for making her and her family comfortable in her final hours.
Ahead of the larger gathering an intimate service with family was held, if you were unable to attend, the family invites you to join them virtually by watching a recording of this service, which can be accessed by clicking here.