William Douglas Fowler, age 80, of Grayling, Michigan, passed away peacefully on May 1, 2022. Doug was born on November 11, 1941 to George Royce and Florence Fowler (Foco) in Flint, Michigan and graduated from Grand Blanc High School in the class of ‘59. Upon graduating he enlisted in the Seabees serving for a time in Holy Loch, Scotland.
After a brief stint with Michigan Bell he began his career in law enforcement, joining the Grand Rapids police force in 1963, becoming policeman of the year in 1968. After 14 years he joined the State of Michigan’s Drug Investigations Unit and later the Attorney General’s Organized Crime Division. In 1982 he joined Medical Mutual of Ohio where he led their fraud investigation unit, though he would say his most notable accomplishment at Medical Mutual was meeting his future wife Karen. Doug moved back to Michigan in 1996 and with Karen they acquired the Harbor Cafe in Elk Rapids where they enjoyed the company of so many residents and guests in the area and were able to be closer to family who they loved spending time with.
Still, Doug was always a cop at heart which was never so obvious as the time he was enjoying an ice cream cone one summer day with Karen and his grandkids on Elk Rapids’ main street when he noticed one of the town’s police cars stop suddenly a block away and the policeman in it taking off on foot after a suspect. Forgetting his age and the fact he’d retired from law enforcement many years before, Doug handed his cone to Karen sprinting down an adjacent alley participating in the foot chase returning to his melted cone only after the suspect was apprehended. Doug and Karen loved the outdoors and fishing together, especially on their boat the Groggy Frog on Lake Erie and on trips to Isle Royale National Park. Doug was a founding member of the Chain O’ Lakes Sportsman’s Club and he and Karen were active members of the Single Action Shooting Society participating in western-style shooting competitions. Though he enjoyed the fishing, hunting, camping, and shooting competitions it was the company and camaraderie of friends and family that he enjoyed most. Doug will be greatly missed but we take heart in knowing he is at peace.
He was preceded in death by his wife of 27 years, Karen (Dorko); an infant sister; and his stepbrother, Keith Floyd (Karen, deceased). He leaves behind with wonderful memories, his sisters, Carla “Cookie” Staudacher (Jon) and Paula Sardone (Vincent, deceased); his former spouse, Joanne Fast and their sons, Mike (Marsha) Fowler, and their children Alex, Chris, and Andrea; Pat (Rachelle) Fowler and their children, Brad, Kayl, Brooke, and Brett; and Geoff Fowler (Stacey Whipple); and his sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Lorrie and Bill Watkins; as well as many nieces and nephews. To sign online guestbook, visit www.cremationsocietymidmi.com