Born Lillian Jane Martyn to Hattie and James Martyn of Detroit on Sunday August 16, 1931. She graduated from Denby High School in Detroit and then studied at the Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, where she sang in the choir. After Moody, Lillian returned to Detroit, where she met her husband William Woodrow Belcher, whom she wed on September 12, 1964. The couple welcomed their only child, William James Belcher, in 1966 and soon settled in Clinton Township.
She would stay in metro Detroit for nearly two decades. Over these years she spent her time caring for her mother, faithfully delivering mail for the United States Postal Service, helping her husband successfully run multiple businesses in the area, and vacationing in northern Michigan, letting her boys have the run of any golf course around while she relaxed by the water.
An avid follower of God, Lillian had a passion for playing the organ and performed in many weddings and services at the Gratiot Avenue Baptist Church in Detroit. She continued this in Brunswick, Georgia, at the Brookman Newhope Congregational Methodist Church after retiring from the United States Postal Service and moving south with her husband in 1985. She would stay in Georgia through her husband's death in 1993, but quickly moved back to Michigan the following year and settled next door to her son and his wife in Spring Lake as they prepared to welcome what would be her only grandchild, William Belcher Jr. She would stay in Spring Lake for the rest of her earthly days, never leaving her family's side, guiding not only them, but whomever was around her with patience, love and an overall gentleness.
Being there to see her son and grandson grow into the men they are today was truly her greatest joy in life. She loved her boys with all her heart, but never ran out of love to give. Throughout her life many more found a special place for her in their heart as “Aunt Lill” and “Grandma B.”
When she wasn't nurturing those around her, she filled her free time with word search puzzles, knitting, crocheting, reading (especially Grace Livingston Hill), listening to and watching the birds, watching her favorite soap, “Days of Our Lives,” or whichever game show was on. She enjoyed cheering on her Detroit tigers no matter how poorly they were playing and spending time with her cats Samantha and Tabitha.
She was preceded in death by her husband William Woodrow Belcher; brother Robert Martyn and wife Marion; brother Arthur Martyn; brother James Martyn and wife Linda; and sister-in-law Fran Martyn. She is survived by her son William (Julie) Belcher of Spring Lake; grandson, William Belcher Jr. of Norton Shores; brother, Donald Martyn of Grand Rapids; sister-in-law, Jeri Martyn of Troy; and countless nieces and nephews from around the country.
A Funeral Service will be held at 1 p.m. on Wednesday, June 19, 2019 at The Lee Chapel, 6291 S. Harvey St., 231-798-1100. Visitation with the Belcher family will take place two hours prior to the service at the funeral home. Inurnment will take place at White Chapel Memorial Park Cemetery in Troy, Michigan, at a later date.
You may visit the family’s online guest book at www.sytsemafh.com. Arrangements entrusted to The Lee Chapel of Sytsema Funeral & Cremation Services, 6291 S. Harvey St., Norton Shores, MI 49444.