By SUE SUCHYTA
Sunday Times Newspapers
RIVERVIEW – Kirk Borger, 49, Riverview Veterans Memorial Library director, was found dead in his apartment Friday following a police wellness check requested by concerned library employees following his absence of several days.
Lisa Croff, spokeswoman for the Wayne County Medical Examiner’s office, said his death was a suicide.
A funeral is scheduled for 2 p.m. March 29 at Woodside Bible Church, 3620 Rochester Road, Royal Oak.
Borger was known and loved by both young and old. Children loved his story times, where he would use character voices and puppets. He also held Lego building activities and other popular children’s programming.
Borger also recorded the oral histories of many local veterans, including World War II veterans, which are part of a digitized video collection, online at riverviewveteransmemorial.com.
“We would like (to interview) World War II veterans only because every year there are less and less of them,” Borger said in February 2014. “But any veteran, whether combat or not, I would like to interview them.”
When the library was officially renamed the Riverview Veterans Memorial Library on Veterans Day, Nov. 11, 2017, in honor of those who served, Borger said the renaming of the library had been a long time in coming.
“I have been here 17 years, and in the past four or five years I have put an emphasis on making the library not so much a veterans center but someplace that not just commemorates veterans – because we have that in the memorial outside – but I wanted to make what we do at the library something that we can do to tie in veterans with,” Borger said at the renaming ceremony.
Borger was always willing to recommend a good book, especially hot reads for cold winter nights.
In January, Borger recommended several books to curl up with, including, “Column of Fire,” by Ken Follett, which he said is long but worthwhile.
“Two lovers who get involved with the intrigue during the reign of Elizabeth I, is sure to make an exciting read on a wintry evening,” Borger said. “The boyfriend spies for Elizabeth I, but also must manage his turbulent relationship with his girlfriend.”
To travel to a warmer climate with a book, Borger recommended Joan Didion’s “South and West.”
Borger also recommended Ian McEwan’s “Nutshell,” which he said was told told from the unique perspective of an unborn child, who describes his mother and father’s relationship and the ensuing crime of passion.
The library was closed Saturday, but reopened Monday.
(Sue Suchyta can be reached at [email protected].)