Former Grand Rapids Mayor John Logie Dies
He was one of Grand Rapids' longest serving mayors. He was first elected mayor in 1991 and served in that position until 2003.
John Logie passed away on Wednesday, August 4th, 2021 -- just one week before his 82nd birthday. He battled Alzhiemer's for many years.
Logie was born in Ann Arbor on August 11th, 1939, but his family moved to Grand Rapids when he was just a small child. He graduated from East Grand Rapids High School in 1957, where he excelled in tennis. He then went to college and did five years of active duty in the U.S. Navy. While in the Navy he served on destroyers in the Pacific and met his wife Susan. After serving in the military, he returned to Ann Arbor to attend the University of Michigan's Law School. He returned to Grand Rapids and had a long career in law at Warner Norcross & Judd.
His obituary explained that "Early in his career at Warner Norcross & Judd, John was selected by Hal Sawyer to research whether President Gerald Ford could issue a pardon to his predecessor, Richard M. Nixon. The team’s conclusion was that case law established that Ford could legally issue a pre-emptive pardon prior to the commencement of criminal proceedings against Nixon. While John felt that Nixon should have faced criminal prosecution, he was proud that his team’s work helped clarify United States law with respect to Presidential pardons."
During his time as the Mayor of Grand Rapids, Logie helped cut ribbons for places like the Van Andel Museum Center, Milennium Park, and Van Andel Arena.
Logie wanted the position of part-time Mayor to become a full time position. In 2002, he proposed changing the City Charter to create that full time position. His proposed change was left up to voters, who defeated the idea.
After retiring, Logie spend time sailing the Great Lakes from his home port of Charlevoix.
Current Grand Rapids Mayor Rosalynn Bliss posted on Twitter: "A sad day in our community as we say goodbye to Mayor John Logie. He was an exceptional leader who shaped our city in a multitude of ways. He was a friend and mentor, who I could always count on for wise counsel and advice. He will be missed by many."
Former Mayor George Heartwell released the following statement: "John Logie and I came on the Grand Rapids City commission together, he as mayor, me as Third Ward city commissioner in 1993. Frankly, John is one of the brightest people I've ever known. And he was a mentor for me, especially on process, meeting leadership.
I think John and I share a very similar vision for the city of Grand Rapids as a progressive community. He had 12 years, I had 12 years; there's 24 years of a very similar vision to people working to carry that vision out.
John left a tremendous legacy for the city, and he'll be missed greatly."
Logie is survived by his wife Susan, son John and daughters, Susannah and Maggie, along with two siblings and six grandchildren.
There will be no public observance for Logie. His obituary suggested that "Those inclined to take a moment to honor John’s memory are invited to make a Manhattan —according to his favored recipe, which is strikingly at odds with all other known recipes, by adjusting the ratios of whiskey and sweet vermouth to half-and-half — and raise a glass. Those sharing an appreciation for John’s love of singing are invited to offer up the first two verses of 'The Navy Hymn' or 'Blue Bayou' or, perhaps, 'Hail to the Victors' in his honor, ideally startling others with the volume and commitment of their performances."
Here is WOOD TV-8's report on John Logie's death...