CADILLAC — R J Starlin, age 74, passed away Sunday, February 10, 2019 at Munson Healthcare Cadillac Hospital in the care of Munson Hospice after a 4.5 years-long struggle with Hairy Cell Leukemia.

He was born to Wallace and Gurley (Freese) Starlin on September 7, 1944 in Dr. Tornberg’s office on Cass Street in Cadillac.

He graduated from McBain Public High School in 1962 and worked his entire career as a truck driver, retiring in 2009. He married the former Clorinda King on June 21, 55 years ago. He was a loving, caring and dedicated husband, father, grandfather and friend. He was known for his quick wit and sarcastic humor. He made everyone he came in contact with smile. RJ will be missed dearly by many.

RJ loved the outdoors, hunting, fishing and always looked forward to, and enjoyed, his many hunting trips “out West‘ with his good friends and hunting buddies Dale, Greg, Frank, Nate, Dave and Carol Haskins, Peter and Johanna Miller and families. He enjoyed gardening and loading shells in his “gun room.‘ He spent many happy times snowmobiling and motorcycling in his younger years. He was a member of the Cadillac snowmobile group that qualified to race at the I-500 at Sault Ste. Marie. He spent many happy times with friends and neighbors at the summer retreat at Hogback Lake in Leroy.

He is survived by his wife, Clorinda; their children: Robert (Dr. Helane Folske) Starlin of Conception Junction, Missouri, Scott Starlin and Jessica (William) Starlin-Ronan, all of Cadillac; grandson, Robert (Kim Mathis) Starlin; granddaughter, Clorinda Eileen Ronan; a grandchild due in July; great-grandson, Owen Anthony Starlin; father-in-law, Richard T. King of Manton; brother, Michael (April) Starlin of McBain; sister, Wanetta Gibbons of Farwell; in-laws: Connie Starlin of Cedar Springs, Bill (Sandie) King, Hazel Holly (Mike Hunt) of Cadillac, Kevin (Gena) King of East Jordan; and many beloved nieces, nephews and special friends.

R J was preceded in death by an infant son, Brian; his parents; mother-in-law, Ardith King; and siblings: Bobby, Marshal, Milan and Ruby.

There are no words to express the gratitude and affection he and his family have for his oncologist, Dr, Robert Schwert, and the entire staff at Munson Hospital-Cadillac Infusion Center, who became a part of his family the last 4.5 years.

We would additionally like to thank the Ebels family in Falmouth, Pastor Brian Farmer and our friends and family at Cherry Grove Church of the Nazarene, friends at the Marion Rod and Gun Club, including Bob Markwart, Dennis and Jan Stoll and everyone for their prayers, thoughts and kindness.

Cremation has taken place and a celebration of life will be held in the spring.

Memorial contributions may be made to St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Shriner’s Children Hospital or Munson Hospice of Cadillac.

An online guestbook is available at

Cadillac News


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