James R. Merlo, 84, Waterford, passed away peacefully on May 31, 2019 at his home surrounded by family.

James was born Sept. 21, 1934 to James and Theresa (nee Schaivo) Merlo. He attended a boy’s technical school through tenth grade. On Nov. 14, 1953, he married Darlene M. Jens.

James lived in Crystal Falls, Mich., Pennsylvania, and Milwaukee, before moving to Waterford in 1969. James was a hard worker who worked as a postmaster and owned his own company, “Merlo Drywall”. He owned and operated his own bar, JD’s Village Pub, with Dolly in Waterford.

James will be dearly missed by his sister Rosemary (John) Auer; his son James J. (Kathy) Merlo; his daughters Gina (Tom) Halter and Susan Merlo; and his grandchildren Robin (Kimberlee) Duran, Bonnie (Chris) Rydelski, Michael (Amanda) Merlo, Tyler Merlo, Allyssa Merlo, Hannah Merlo, Nickolass Merlo, Stephanie (Sarah) Ryckman, and Katie (Dan) O’Brien. He is further survived by his great-grandchildren Travis Duran, Parker and Delaney Rydelski, James “Easton” Merlo and Mikaela O’Brien; as well as many nieces, nephews, cousins, and lots of friends.

James was preceded in death by his parents, his stepfather Robert Bergman, his wife Darlene, his son Mitchell A. Merlo, and his granddaughter Victoria R. Halter.

A celebration of James’s life will take place on Friday June 14, 2019 at Integrity

Celebration Center. Visitation will be from 3:30 to 5:45 p.m. A memorial service will be held at 6 p.m. followed by an open house from 7 to 9 p.m.

Memorials to the family are appreciated to support Jim’s three favorite charities, Hannah’s Playground, The Make A Wish Foundation, and The Wounded Warriors Project.

In honor of Jim “Speedo” being such a sports enthusiast, please wear your favorite teams sports clothing, anything except the Bears or the Cubs.

Integrity Funeral Services is serving the family. Well-wishers may visit www.integrityfunerals.net.