Thursday, June 11, 2020

Requiescat In Pace

Joe Cramer passed away on May 22, 2020 at the age of 75. Known locally as The Wyoming Riddler, he brought adventure into the lives of thousands through an annual Grand Rapids area treasure hunt. He is an inspiration to countless treasure hunters and hiders alike. I hope as The Grand Rapids Riddler (The GRRiddler), I can carry on the tradition in his honor for years to come.

Joseph Anthony Cramer, age 75, of Wyoming, went to be with his Lord and Saviour, Jesus on Friday, May 22, 2020.  He was preceded in death by his wife, Sandra.  He will be lovingly remembered by his children, Brenda and Ghassan Karana, and Stephen Cramer; grandchildren, Elias, Anna, Luke, Noah Karana, Ophelia and Evangeline Cramer; brother, Fred Cramer; sister, Barb Schmidt; several nieces, nephews, cousins and many dear friends.  Joseph was a loving, caring husband, father, and grandfather.  Known by many as “The Wyoming Riddler,” Joe’s close call with death from carbon monoxide poisoning and the two-year loss of memory inspired him to create 34 years of treasure hunts.  The riddles were his way of keeping his mind active. He was encouraged by a movie producer to write a book about his life and near-death experiences.  Thus, Joe wrote, “Joe’s Story: The Book of a Lifetime.” Joe was a God filled man who was devoted to his church, St. John Vianney, attending grade school and never leaving his parish. Joe was a strong Catholic, relying on his faith and trust in God during rough times. He walked around Lake Michigan in his early 20’s, surviving on what he could find to eat to develop his adventurous spirit. He worked for the railroad in Detroit and loved to ride his bike. Many of the bike rides gave him ideas of where he could hide clues to his riddles. For Joe it was all about others: visiting vets who never received visitors at the nursing home, taking the family camping, hiring and mentoring prisoners in the work release program, or just sharing the joy of life with others. He loved being with his grandchildren and exploring the Michigan scenery with Sandy in the car. It was said of him that he was a man that made small things extraordinary. A Mass of Christian burial will be held at 10 am on Saturday, May 30, 2020 at St. John Vianney Catholic Church, 4101 Clyde Park SW, Wyoming, with Fr. John Vallier presiding. Burial at Resurrection Cemetery. Relatives and friends may meet the family Friday from 2-4 and 6-8 pm (ten person limit at a time with social distancing) at Matthysse Kuiper DeGraaf Funeral Home, 4031 Clyde Park SW, Wyoming.  Those who wish may make memorial contributions to the Catholic War Veterans.

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