Retired US Army Col. David Jay Poel, age 89 of Grand Haven, passed away on Wednesday, March 3, 2021 at Hospice at Heartwood Lodge. He was born on September 17, 1931 in Grand Haven, MI to the late Jay D. and Isabella L. (Teitz) Poel. He married Anick Pentcheff on January 16, 1974 in Hawaii.
David graduated from Grand Haven High School in 1949, then attending and graduating from Michigan State University in 1954. He enlisted in the US Army in 1953 and was Commissioned 2nd Lieutenant. David then entered active duty and proudly served his country for the next 30 years, from 1954 to 1984. His military career took him many places, earning him several awards and decorations. David was awarded: Legion of Merit with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters, Army Meritorious Service Medal with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters, Air Medal with 1 Oak Leaf Cluster, Army Commendation Medal with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters, Parachutist badge, and several Vietnam Awards.
While serving in the Army, David furthered his education, graduating from Military Police School, Fort Gordon, GA; Armor School, Fort Knox, KY; Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS; and NATO Defense University, Rome, Italy. After his discharge from the Army in 1984, David worked as the General Manager of COIN until 1989, and then served as the Director of Community Corrections, Ottawa County, from 1990 until his retirement in 2002.
He was a member of St. Patrick-St. Anthony’s Catholic Parish, and the Rotary Clubs in both Grand Haven and Leavenworth, Kansas. David was a longtime member of the American Legion Charles A. Conklin Post 28 and former longtime member of the Grand Haven Eagles Aerie 925, the Military Retired Officers Association, and the Alpha Tau Omega Fraternity.
David enjoyed fishing, golfing, tending to his flower garden, and especially supporting as many locally-owned businesses as possible.
David is lovingly remembered and missed by his wife of 47 years, Anick Poel of Grand Haven; his two sons, Michael P. Poel of Roundhill, VA and David Poel of Grand Haven; and three grandchildren, James, Brett, and Christian Poel.
He was preceded in death by his daughter-in-law, Alice Poel.
The Funeral Service for David will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Friday, March 12, 2021 at St. Patrick-St. Anthony's Catholic Parish with Fr. Charles Schwartz officiating. Visitation will be held one hour prior to the service at the Church. Masks and Social Distancing required at all services. Full Military Rites to be performed by American Legion Charles A. Conklin Post #28 and the US Army. Interment will be at Arlington National Cemetery, Virginia.
Memorial Contributions may be made to Hospice of North Ottawa Community-Heartwood Lodge or American Legion Charles A. Conklin Post #28 Honor Guard.
The service will be live-streamed for those unable to attend the service. Please visit https://youtu.be/S-LrUwAZvz0 at 11:00 a.m. to view the service in real-time.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Retired Col. David Jay Poel, please visit our floral store.
Hospice of North Ottawa Community- Heartwood Lodge
18525 Woodland Ridge Dr., Spring Lake MI 49456
American Legion Charles A. Conklin Post 28-Honor Guard
700 Harbor Avenue, Grand Haven MI 49417