Bernard James Trompeter

May 19, 1922 - April 16, 2019

Bernard James Trompeter was born in Rochester, New York on May 19, 1922 to August J. Trompeter and Louise Le Frois. After graduating from Aquinas Institute, Bern completed an apprenticeship and worked at Eastman Kodak Company, where he made precision instruments. Bernard met his future wife, Mary Kay, in 1942. World War II interrupted his career in 1944. He served in the Navy on the U.S.S. San Francisco in the Asia-Pacific Area and the Philippine Campaign. He was awarded five bronze stars, and was discharged on May 6, 1946.

Bern and Mary Kay married on May 22, 1946. He enrolled in Alfred University and graduated in 1950 with a degree in Ceramic Engineering. Upon graduation, Bern received a job offer from Champion Spark Plug Company in Detroit, Michigan. From 1950 until his retirement in 1986, Bern enjoyed a very fulfilling and successful career, eventually becoming the Production Manager of the Ceramic Division. Bern also enjoyed participating in the company’s bowling and golf leagues throughout his career.

Bern was an active parent, coaching his children’s baseball and softball teams, golfing with his sons and daughters, and enjoying their development from children into adults. Bern and Mary Key were also early advocates of independent living for people with developmental disabilities. Bern served on the boards of Community Living Centers, Inc., Oakland County A.R.C. and New Horizons sheltered workshop. While at Champion Spark Plug, he was successful at bringing work to New Horizons and contributing to the success of the workshop’s participants.

Bern and Mary Kay were founding members of Immaculate Heart of Mary parish in Detroit. Later, they were active parishioners of St. Michael’s in Southfield and St. Fabian’s in Farmington Hills, giving service in several parish ministries. Bern was especially active in the choir, in helping administer church collections, arranging trips for the Senior Group, delivering Holy Communion to shut-ins and serving luncheons after funeral services.

Vacations were important, and Bern and Mary Kay frequently welcomed extended family and friends to enjoy their hospitality in East Tawas, Lake Charlevoix, Bellaire and South Haven. Bern and Mary Kay also travelled to Costa Rica, Korea, Hong Kong and London to make sure they were a part of the life of their youngest daughter, Jeanne, son-in-law, Mark, and their grandchildren.

Bern will be missed by his children, Bernard G. (Bonnie Teegen), Thomas (Jane Rushford), Daniel (Karen), Paul (Carol), Mary Louise (Christopher Rohwer) and Jeanne (Mark Cardwell). He enjoys the love and respect of his grandchildren, Michael (Jessica) Rohwer, Katie Rohwer, Daniel Trompeter, Elizabeth, Annie, Jeffrey, Megan and Caitlyn Cardwell, and his great-grandchildren, Ada Lyn and Elias James Trompeter. He is also survived by his sister, Lucille Moran, and many nieces and nephews.

The family extends a special sense of gratitude to Bobbie Paritee, Shantelle Mason and Nelly Bustamante who attended to Bern’s needs over the past years.

Visitation will be held, Friday, April 26, 2019, 5:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. with a rosary service at 7:00 p.m. at McCabe Funeral Home, 31950 West Twelve Mile Rd, Farmington Hills, MI (248-553-0120). Bern will lie in state at Saint Fabian Catholic Church, 32200 West Twelve Mile Road, Farmington Hills, MI (248-553-4610) on Saturday, April 27, 2019, at 10:00 a.m. until the time of the funeral mass at 10:30 a.m. The Rite of Committal will occur on a later date at Great Lakes National Cemetery.


Memorial tributes may be sent to Community Living Centers, 33235 Grand River Avenue, Farmington, MI 48336.

Contact Us

  • Farmington Hills Chapel 31950 West Twelve Mile Rd Farmington Hills, MI 48334 (248) 553-0120

  • Canton Chapel 851 North Canton Center Rd Canton, MI 48187 (734) 981-4530