TOTEFF George Anthony, Jr. George Anthony Toteff, Jr. died Tuesday, February 1, 2011, in his home near Johannesburg, Michigan. While in the company of his four children, he peacefully fell to sleep as his family surrounded his bed and prayed the rosary, something that their father did daily. Diana (John Bergquist), Mark (Nancy Toteff), Wayne (Babe Toteff) and Bonny (Bret Miller) were blessed to be able to share his final moments, just as they all had less than ten months ago with their mother. George was born November 14, 1925, in Duquesne PA, son of the late George A Toteff Sr. and Mary Toteff. His father came from Bulgaria and was the owner of a ticket for the Titanic... a voyage he fortunately missed. During his full lifetime, George felt very blessed and enjoyed much success. It began when as a young man struggling with a new company; he made a pilgrimage to St Anne's in Canada and received a vision in a dream. The Trinity and three roses inspired him to create the 3-in-1 model car kit that propelled his company to great success. A champion of manufacturing, George was a member of the Hobby Manufacturers Hall of Fame. His tireless efforts and strong faith allowed him to lead several companies to prosperity, including, AMT, MPC, Lionel Trains, Craft House Casuals and Craft House Corporation. He located his manufacturing plant in Kalkaska, Michigan and created over 200 jobs, took the company public and became part of the RPM, Inc family of companies. Family values always came first for George, and he took great pride in passing on and instilling those values in his children and grandchildren. Of all his success in life, he always believed his family was his greatest. His grandchildren include Darren and Heather Bergquist and their daughter Morgan, Ryan and Trishia Bergquist and their sons Jaeger and Rocco, Ashlee Bergquist, Kyle Toteff, Chad and Chelsie Toteff and their sons Jake and Trace, Andrew Robertson, Andrew and Courtney Toteff and their daughter Maisey, Jennifer Toteff, Mary Toteff, Mark and Katie Miller and their sons Luke and Gavin, Eric Miller and Michelle Miller, 1 brother, Robert Toteff of Saginaw and 1 sister, Maryann (Thomas) Miller of Farwell. The last nine months of George's life he wished to be reunited with his late wife of 60 years, Loretta, and this week he got his wish. He missed her terribly and credited her with being the pillar of his success. A visitation will be held Friday, February 4, 2011, at the Nelson Funeral Home in Gaylord from noon until 8pm, with a rosary at 6pm. A funeral mass will be held at St Mary Cathedral at 11am Saturday, February 5, 2011, with visitation beginning at 10am. A luncheon will follow. Donations in memory of George Toteff may be made to Hospice of Michigan through the Nelson Funeral Home, P.O. Box 1548, Gaylord, MI 49734. Friends may share memories or offer their condolences online at www.nelsonsfuneralhome.com
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Published in Toledo Blade on Feb. 4, 2011