Bernard J. Froysland, 86 years old, passed away unexpectedly on December 17, 2020 in Naples, FL. Survived by his loving wife and rock of 56 years, Susan Froysland. Born in York Village Maine on August 28, 1934, the son of a Norwegian-immigrant father, Hans Froysland, and his mother, Evelyn Anderson (Columbus, OH.) Bernie was passionate about people. He was committed to making sure that others had what they needed by sacrificing his own good. He was active in church groups both in Naples, FL and in Manistee, MI. John Braun’s teachings and classmates held a special place in his heart and fueled his love for learning. The learnings and experiences from those classes he shared with many.
After spending his childhood years raising cain in York Village, ME and Portsmouth, NH his family moved to Chicago, IL. Putting himself through college by selling magazines door-to-door it was important to him to be educated. Despite receiving a teaching certificate after graduating from Bethel College in Minnesota he chose a different career path. Moving back to the Chicago area after graduation he started his career in the early 1960’s by leading crews and selling magazines door-to-door. After starting a family in Chicago they moved to Grand Rapids, MI in December of 1973. Raising his family in West Michigan he also eventually formed his own company to sell subscriptions (Kent Subscription Service) and started a second company with Sue offering commercial and residential cleaning services (Sue’s Super Scrubbers.) Stressing the importance of education to his three children, he made sure to help put each of them through college and ultimately saw each of them earn graduate degrees, moments that made him proud. Active in both companies, until his death, he never stopped working to provide for his family and to be able to give to others. Never quite retiring, he and Sue have spent the better part of the winter months in Florida for the last 25 years. Settling on Naples in the winter and Manistee, MI in the summers he described it as the best of both worlds. He loved spending time with the love of his life attending outdoor concerts in Manistee at both the “Manistee Shoreline Showcase” and the “Roots on the River” series. This favorite activity of his was one of many ways that he enriched his cultural experiences and spent time with the one who meant the most to him. Annually, Bernie and Sue provided backpacks for school children through their donations to ECHO His Love, Inc. in Manistee, MI. He spent a lot of his time with his vast social network, often scrolling through his contact list to make a phone call that so many of you received. Those who knew him best also knew that material items were least important to him, “Sue and I count our friendships as a measure of our wealth.” A caring and giving heart, we who knew him will be less wealthy absent his deposits of love.
Survived by his bride, Susan Froysland, his children Hayley Froysland (her boyfriend Oscar Barrau) of South Bend, IN; Shaney Mulligan (and her family: husband Chuck Mulligan and their children Andrew Mulligan (13) and Macallister Mulligan(11)); Brandon Froysland (and his family: wife Erin Froysland and their children Jake Froysland (20), Josh Froysland (18), Jackson Froysland (14), and Ellexa Froysland (12)). Also survived by his eldest brother, Bert Froysland, of Grand Rapids, MI. He was preceded in his death by his father Hans Froysland, his mother Evelyn Froysland, and his younger brother, Bruce Froysland.
Profound, thoughtful, kind, giving. He served with a purpose. He was dedicated to his wife, family, friends, and even those that he didn’t know, and defined by his constant pursuit of justice and peace for those that needed a voice. The word of the Lord spoke about Bernie in Isaiah 1:17, “Seek justice, Correct the oppressor. Defend the rights of the fatherless. Plead the widow’s cause.”
As a result of the pandemic, memorial and funeral services will be planned for a later date. Saddened by his loss, Sue is grateful for the outpouring of support from the vast network of friends that Bernie helped build throughout the course of their 56 year marriage. In lieu of flowers, his family would ask that you consider a donation in his name to either St. Matthew’s House of Naples, FL (2001 Airport Rd S Naples, FL 34112 or www.stmatthewshouse.org) or First Congregational Church of Manistee, MI (412 4th St, Manistee, MI 49660 or www.uccmanistee.org.)