Cover photo for Anna Jean (Rusk) Engel's Obituary
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1943 Jean 2023

Anna Jean (Rusk) Engel

December 4, 1943 — March 27, 2023

Battle Creek

Anna Jean (Rusk) Engel

Jean Engel, 79, of Battle Creek, Mich., passed away March 27, 2023, along with her precious ragdoll cat, Purrcey, aka His Royal Highness.  She was born Dec 4, 1943, in Crawfordsville, Ind. to Lloyde and Helen (Smith) Rusk. She was the youngest child and only daughter. She was preceded in death by her three older brothers Edward (Ruby) Rusk, Fred (Sharon-living) Rusk, and Jack Rusk who liked to practice wrestling moves on their little sister.

After graduating from Northern Arizona University with a bachelor’s degree, she moved to Mich., where she was employed by the state as a social worker. After 35 years of public service with the State of Michigan, Jean retired as an Investigator - Compliance Division, occasionally working undercover. In her free time, she spent many hours volunteering with organizations including American Legion #0298, Lions Club (11.B1), Keep Michigan Beautiful, Kingman Museum, etc.

She loved to travel and took many trips with her special friend Michael Mullen before he passed away in 2019. She loved Florida where she visited family. She also enjoyed driving her convertible PT Cruiser.

She leaves behind her beloved nephews and nieces: Brad (Deb) Rusk of Fishers, IN.; Dave (Wendy) Rusk of Cornelius, NC; Debbie (Bill) Phillips of St. Augustine, FL.; Greg (Diane) Rusk, of Tallahassee, FL.; and Ryan (Stephanie) Rusk of Evansville, IN.

A private graveside gathering will be held in Indiana with her nieces and nephews where she will be laid to rest.  Donations can be made to Fantasy Forest ℅ Leila Arboretum Society, Attn: Michele Barry, 928 W Michigan Ave, Battle Creek, MI 49037 or call (269)969-0270x116, which is one of the many organizations Jean nominated for the Keep Michigan Beautiful Award. Condolences can be sent to the funeral home at


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