Muriel Perkins Etter

Muriel Perkins Etter went to be with her Lord, Wednesday, Dec. 30, 2015.  Mrs. Etter, 92, passed away at Brookdale Assisted Living (Grand Court) in Adrian, where she had been a resident since July 2014.

Muriel had a lifelong relationship with the Lord and devoted most of her life to sharing her faith with others not only as a missionary in foreign countries, but with people in all walks of life.

Her gentle disposition of kindness and understanding was a valuable support in her ministry to people of all faiths, challenges, and needs.

Hers was a message of understanding, of hope, and deep faith. Muriel’s stories of the friendships she made in the foreign mission field fascinated her listeners. But other tales of her earlier life in the military, as a ham radio operator and also an Adrian elementary school teacher, were equally welcomed.

She was also a loving and caring family member and took great pride in the accomplishments of her nieces and nephews. In her youth, Muriel had an interest in planes and aviation. Inspired by Pearl Harbor, and a zeal for patriotism, she enlisted in the Women’s Reserve Marine Corps in 1944. After boot camp at Camp LeJeune, N.C., she attended aviation machinist mate school and later obtained her pilot’s license. She often told the story that because of her petite size she was assigned to work inside the large plane’s fuel tanks and behind the instrument panel.

Muriel graduated from Bob Jones University in Greenville, S.C., and continued her preparation for missionary work studying linguistics in Oklahoma.

Her work in the mission field was through her association with the Wycliffe Bible Translators, Inc. Her work as a Bible translator with native tribes was spent in Mexico, Peru, and near the Amazon River in Brazil. During her time in Brazil, she translated 17 primers for the Terena Indians. In 1964 she returned to her home in Adrian to care for her mother and to obtain a teaching certificate from Michigan State University. After teaching in Detroit inner city schools, Muriel taught at McKinley and Lincoln schools in Adrian. One of her delights in retirement was entertaining foreign students who came to visit her in Adrian and Tecumseh. She was a member of the Grace Point Evangelical Church. She married Roy Etter of Tecumseh, a fellow 1941 Adrian High School class member in 2004. He preceded her in death in 2013.

Muriel was the daughter of the late Arthur and Lura Perkins of Adrian. A brother, Alvin O. Perkins of Toledo, also preceded her in death.

Muriel is survived by her sister, Joyce Greulich, of Daytona Beach, Fla., several nieces and nephew including Michael and Gail Perkins of Petersburg, Mich.; a special cousin, Mary Alice Powell of Grand Rapids, Ohio, and very special friends, Mark and Deb Sawinski of Clayton, Mich.

Funeral services were held on Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2016, at 10 a.m. at the Anderson Funeral Home, Adrian with Pastor Mark Sawinski officiating. Burial was in North Rome Cemetery with full military rites conducted by the Onsted American Legion Durkee-Seager Post No. 550.

Visitation was held on Monday, Jan. 4, 2016 from 2 to 6 p.m. at Anderson Funeral Home, Adrian.

Condolences may be sent to the family at           

Memorial contributions may be made to the Wycliffe Bible Translators. Envelopes are available at Anderson Funeral Home, Adrian.


Tecumseh Herald


110 E. Logan St.
P.O. Box 218
Tecumseh, MI 49286

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