On March 16th, 2022, Gregory Arthur Wood, loving father, son and husband, died at the age of 70. He was preceded in death by his father John Wood, and is survived by his mother Ruth Wood, son James Wood, and wife Mary Rossano. Greg had metastatic prostate cancer and died of complications from his chemotherapy.
Born in Royal Oak, Michigan in 1951, Greg enjoyed the freedoms of a 1950’s childhood, riding his bike around his neighborhood, playing with his cousins and friends, and enjoying vacations “up north” in Michigan. Greg was a born tinkerer. In grade school he would take clocks apart so that he could solve the puzzle of putting them back together. As a boy, Greg had a job assisting a milkman on his morning route. Sometimes he would see bicycles that people left on their curbs with the trash and would return for them later. Greg would repair the bikes and sell them, and thus began a lifelong pursuit of finding, improving, and selling vehicles and many other things. As soon as he was old enough to drive, he began to buy and sell cars. This passion continued for the rest of his life.
As a young man, Greg was a photographer. He worked in commercial and news photography. His photos appeared in the Ann Arbor News and some were distributed nationally. An avid collector of cameras and gear, he put on photography trade shows in Michigan and Chicago. His love of collecting antique cameras grew into a love of antiques of all kinds. This led him to open the Incurable Collector antiques mall in Ann Arbor, Michigan in 1982. There, Greg sold a mix of old cameras, bicycles, radios and “baby boom antiques.”
Greg and Mary were married in 1985. They moved to Chelsea, Michigan, where they bought and renovated two homes. They loved Chelsea, but moved to Mason, Michigan in 1992 so that it would be easier for Mary to commute to Michigan State University. In Mason, they had acreage for Mary’s horses and a large pole barn for Greg’s workshop and vehicles, which by then included a collection of BMW motorcycles.
In the late 1980’s through the 1990’s Greg worked in the building trades with Mad Dog Construction, in Ann Arbor. This group of artisan builders did almost all aspects of building and remodeling themselves, from the framing to the plumbing and electrics, to custom cabinetry. They worked on many fine homes and businesses in the Ann Arbor area, and also restored the Michigan Supreme Court rostrum at the state capital in Lansing.
In 2003, Greg and Mary’s son James was born, and Greg shifted into a stay-at-home dad role while Mary started her career in academia. Greg was a deeply engaged father, who passed his love for old cars to his son and taught him many things about mechanics. James was a fast learner, and Greg would often speak with pride about how smart and capable he is. The “tinkering gene” was definitely passed on and nurtured during their years together.
In 2007, Mary took a position on the faculty of the University of Kentucky and the family relocated to Wilmore, Kentucky. Upon moving to Wilmore, Greg once again became involved in antiques, at Chapman’s Antiques. There, Greg met many local people and became a part of the Wilmore community.
A celebration of Greg’s life will be held on Saturday, April 9th, at the High Bridge Park pavilion. Food and beverages will be served, and guests are encouraged to drive their oldest or most unusual vehicle. Visitation will be from 1:00-3:00 pm. The celebration of life will be from 3:00-4:00 pm, with remarks about Greg from family and guests. Another similar event will be held in Michigan in May. Details to be announced later.
This obituary was lovingly submitted by Greg's family. Hager & Cundiff values nothing more than the trust placed in us to care for Greg and his family.