Longtime VFW Auxiliary member Vera ‘Connie’ Ward passes

Vera “Connie” Ward, of Wayland, one of the longest members of the local VFW No. 7581 vfw-clip-art-626496Ladies Auxiliary, died Friday morning. She was 89.

Mrs. Ward joined the Ladies Auxiliary shortly after it was chartered and was an active member for more than 60 years. She served a term as president in 1962 and was secretary and color bearer and most recently served as flag bearer and legislative chairwoman.

Through her efforts, the Ladies Auxiliary received a legislative service award from the VFW National Organization in 2009.

Vera was a founding member of the Wayland VFW Auxiliary, volunt4392631_300x300_1eered for the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans and Wayland Food Bank. She enjoyed giving her time and efforts to local organizations. She loved gardening and traveling with Jim in their motor home.

She had remained active with the Auxiliary until last fall when she experienced failing health.

A VFW spokesman said, “She and Catherine Milheim were like sisters and were best friends. They did so much work here and worked together on everything.”

Vera is survived by her children: Dennis (Linda) Ward and Deborah (Paul) Drolshagen; her grandchildren: Mindy, Desiree, Stacia, Jeffrey, and Scott; her great-grandchildren: Kollen and Colden; her brothers and sisters: Etta Mae Leverton, Mary Louise Malnic, Leonard Vance, Betty Schmidt, and Sandra Buskirk, and many nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her husband,, James and her brothers and sisters: Doris Krulic, Sonny Vance, Jerry Vance.

Friends may visit with Vera’s family from 5 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 13, at Kubiak-Cook Funeral Services, 312 N. Main St., Wayland. Funeral services will be at 11 a.m. Thursday at the funeral home, with an hour of visitation prior. Interment will follow at Elmwood Cemetery, Wayland.

In lieu of flowers donations may be made in memory of Vera to the Wayland VFW Ladies Auxiliary or Allegan County Humane Society.

The family welcomes memories and messages in their guestbook online at

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