MARION, IN – Ivyal Lee Irwin III, 69, of Marion, Indiana and Traverse City, Michigan passed away Sunday, Jan. 22, 2023, at Marion General Hospital. While his tired heart stopped beating, the memory of a unique and wonderful man beats on. “Ike” was born on March 25, 1953, in Cleveland, Ohio, to Ivyal Lee and Rosalind Marie (Emery) Irwin Jr. Ike was an alumnus of the Coast Guard Academy in New London, Connecticut, Bowling Green University, Bowling Green, Ohio, and Indiana Wesleyan University, Marion, Indiana where he graduated with a teaching degree in history. Ike was a very intelligent man who taught history at Charlton County High School for 13 years where he also coached basketball. His claim to fame is being Champ Bailey’s middle school basketball coach. Ike loved history, reading it, teaching it, talking it. He was a constitutional originalist and loved this country, its foundation, history, and what it stands for with a passion. Ike had a fondness for talk radio (the late Rush Limbaugh and Mark Levin being two of his favorites) and could jabber about politics for hours if you let him (and sometimes when you didn’t), but agree or disagree with him on an issue, he always had your back and would treat you with respect. Subsequent to his teaching days Ike worked at Artec Window and Door for years as the garage door and opener manager and ultimately opened his own business (ITEC Door) which he proudly ran until health issues got the better of him in recent years. He loved working on overhead garage doors and openers and helping folks out when they were in a bind with theirs. He wasn’t speedy, but when he left you could bet the job was done right. Ike was one of a kind. He never married, but he came awfully close. He was the eccentric uncle that all the nieces, nephews, great nieces, and great nephews loved. He is missed already. While Ike never had children, he had a friend, Sam, who was like a son to him and whom he loved dearly. Attending Sam’s graduation and being the best man at Sam’s wedding were two of his proudest moments. Over the years Ike’s faith in Christ grew. He was faithful in reading his Bible and while his Christian walk was at times hampered by feelings of inadequacy, Ike was like his mom in spiritual matters, as authentic and genuine as they come. He lived the sermon. Not perfectly, but to the best of his ability. And now friends, to borrow the words of an old blue grass song, Ike is home safely, the hard journey is over. The air is good and the sky is bright. His healing is complete and he is in the arms of Jesus. No more sitting up all night struggling to get breath. For Ike, all is well as he awaits us in heaven. He is not gone; he has just gone on before. He is waiting with that twinkle in his eye and his mischievous smile. Our beloved Ike was one of a kind and while we miss him, if we know Jesus as our Savior, we will see him again one day. Oh, what a glorious day that will be! For now, he is survived and will be missed greatly by his loving family: siblings, Dawn (Doyle) Berg of Lake Ann, Michigan, Michelle (Dean) Lochner of Marion, Indiana, Dale (Elizabeth) Irwin of Marion, Indiana, and Greg (Bethany) Irwin of Petoskey, Michigan; numerous nieces, nephews, great nieces, and great nephews who adored Uncle “Ikey”. Ike was preceded in death by his parents Ivyal (2006) and Rosalind (1998) Irwin. A “Celebration of Ike” will be taking place at the Brookhaven Wesleyan Church Fellowship Hall in Marion, Indiana on Saturday, Jan. 28, 2023, from 11 AM until 4 PM. A basketball court and shooting some hoops is, of course, included. A luncheon will be served at 12:15 PM. There will be a short informal service that begins sometime after 11 AM when we can finally round up all the kids and where Ike’s brother, Dale, has jokingly informed the baby brother, Greg, that his time limit for speaking is seven minutes. Greg is non-committal to this restrictive course of action, while Ike’s sisters, Dawn and Michelle, are staying out of it. Come for an hour or for the day as memories are shared and family and friends fellowship together. There is nothing that can compare to the love of family and friends as we remember Ike. Memorial contributions may be directed to Christ Community Church of Traverse City or The Salvation Army of Petoskey. Better yet, you can honor Ike’s memory by just coming and shooting some hoops. No flowers needed. We love you, Ike Irwin. In Christ that love is eternal. Say “hi” to Mom and Dad. We will see you all before you know it! For additional information and to view Ike’s online obituary, please visit www.churchfuneralsdirect.com.