Eric Dean Vining

Eric Dean Vining was born in Monroe on May 22, 1959.   He was the son of the late Earl and Charlotte Jean (Whitaker) Vining.   While in his teens, Charlotte, his mother passed away and his father married Easter (Russell) Johnson, who helped to raise Eric as her own.   He attended Monroe High School where he lettered in track and then graduated with the Class of 1977.  

Eric was a great cook and he loved to prepare meals for others.   For many years he worked in the restaurant industry.   His employment spanned Monroe and Wayne Counties while he served several establishments including Duff’s Smorgasboard in Monroe.  

Although Eric had faced many challenges throughout his life it seemed that most recently he was back on the right track.   A people person, Eric was mild mannered and friendly never meeting a stranger or had an ill word about anyone.   He was funny with a great sense of humor.   Eric was also generous with all he had and very willing to lend a helping hand.

He loved all types of music, being especially fond of 70’s R&B, and liked to listen to the Funkadelics, Ohio Players, and Johnny “Guitar” Watson, to name a few.   Eric prided himself on musical knowledge and enjoyed playing “name that tune”.

He appreciated things being clean and painstakingly maintained his vehicles tutoring others on the right way to get it done.   Eric enjoyed playing sports including basketball and softball.

Eric Dean Vining, age 58, of Detroit passed away on Monday, January 29, 2018.   In addition to his mother and father his passing was preceded by a brother:  Earl Jerome “Wolf” Vining.

To cherish his memory, Eric leaves his stepmother:  Easter Vining of Monroe; nine siblings:  Keith Vining of Monroe, Ronald Johnson of Seattle, Washington, Lisa Jeanine Johnson of Virginia, Robert Scott (Laura) Vining of Monroe, Jacqueline Joy McGhee of Monroe, Kevin (Bonnie) Vining of Monroe, Kimberly Joann Bell (Todd Kulczak) of Toledo, Karen Martin of Taylor, and Brian Vining of Toledo; and a host of nieces, nephews, and cousins.

Friends may gather from 3:00-6:00pm on Thursday, February 8, 2018 at Merkle Funeral Service, 2442 North Monroe (734) 384-5185.   A Homegoing Celebration will follow at 6:00pm also at Merkle’s with Manuel Mendez officiating.  

Memorials are suggested to Second Missionary Baptist Church.   Online guests may leave words of inspiration and comfort or share a photo by visiting