Craig Joseph Reske, age 48 years of Niles, Michigan, husband, father, son, baseball coach, band dad, and fan of Ford Mustangs and Kawasaki motorcycles died at 7:35 a.m. on Friday, June 3, 2022 at Memorial Hospital in South Bend, Indiana following a very brief, unexpected illness. His family chose to enhance the lives of others through tissue donation.
He was born on November 29, 1973 in Niles to Larry Joe and Linda Kay (Hemminger) Reske, and was graduated from Niles High School. He continued his education, earning an Associates Degree in Mechanical Engineering Technology from Purdue University in South Bend. He began his employment at the former South Bend plant of Wells Electronics, worked at Dometic for a few years, and was currently employed at EckCo Plastics in Mishawaka, Indiana. While in those engineering offices, he worked with fellow engineering staff to develop solutions to problems, resulting in at-least five patents granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office with Craig’s name listed as an Inventor.
As a young man, Craig played baseball at Thomas Stadium in Niles, and as a father, he coached baseball at Thomas and softball at Fireman’s Park. He was a great supporter of the Brandywine High School Band, often following just behind the band on-parade, driving a pick-up truck pulling the band’s equipment trailer. He was a faithful attender of the games of the Brandywine High School Basketball team. His parental support included the Cass County Fair where every year he spent the week at the fair while his children showed a variety of 4-H animal projects. His daughter chose a cat project one year, and Craig became a “Cat Dad”, finding a special affection for “Eagle” and “Peanut”.
When away from the ball diamond or school or fair, Craig enjoyed fishing with his father-in-law, usually at Diamond Lake near Cassopolis, Michigan. Like most engineers, he was also a “car-guy” with a special interest in the Ford Mustangs of the early 90’s, keeping his 1994 (and his wife’s ’93) in the garage, ready to clean or polish or “upgrade”. He was also a motorcycle guy, enjoying the Kawasaki model KZ-1000.
On August 15, 1998 in Niles he married the former Karie Lee Cox with whom he celebrated last year the twenty-third anniversary of their wedding. He was preceded in death by his father, Larry Reske on March 24, 2019; and by his grandparents, Carrie and Gus Reske and June and Robert Hemminger.
Surviving family includes his wife, Karie Reske and their children, Justin Lee Reske and Madelyn June Reske, both of Niles; Craig’s mother, Linda (& Michael) Lotsbaich of Niles; Karie’s parents, Ron & Mary Cox of Niles; and Aunt, Cindy Borich of Osceola, Indiana; and a wonderful circle of great friends.
Services for Craig Reske will be at 11:00 a.m. on Friday, June 10, 2022 at the Halbritter-Wickens Funeral Home, 615 East Main Street in Niles with the Rev. Jeffrey Fater, Chaplain at EckCo Plastics officiating. Committal will follow at the graveside in Mission Hills. The services will be available livestreamed at: https://www.facebook.com/halbritterwickensfuneralservices/ .
The family will receive relatives and friends beginning at 10:00 a.m. on Friday at the funeral home. Online condolences may be left at:
Craig’s death feels untimely and altogether too soon; but he used his forty-eight years in a remarkable manner. As a young man he pursued athletics, and then pursued higher education. He used that education and curiosity to invent solutions and earn five patents. As a Dad, he became fascinated with everything that his children enjoyed – including performing arts - and helped them to pursue their passions. When Karie’s dad “needed” a fishing partner, Craig found a new passion in fishing. Craig genuinely enjoyed all of creation, but more importantly, he loved sharing those passions with the people around him, especially Maddie, Justin, and Karie.