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OCTOBER 2009 Obituaries


William G. Anderson '49 (9/22/09)

Mary Jane Mulder '47 Baron (9/1/09)

Lloyd G. Beekman '53 (8/2/09)

Connie Nies '56 Berghage (8/25/09)

Marianne Wildschut '59 Boonstra-Elzinga (9/30/09)

Donald S. Botsford '40 (7/18/09)

Doug Burchett '92 (9/15/09)

Carolyn Ringenoldus '62 Condren (7/4/09)

Mary L. DeWitt '61 (6/17/08)

William E. French (9/16/09)

Albert Holland '34 (11/16/08)

Elizabeth Dorothy "Dot" Lincoln '38 Karl (8/30/09)

Edward Kassig '49 (9/4/09)

Henry J. Kinkema '36 (7/1/09)

Leroy Lovelace '59 (4/22/08)

Adam Christopher Lucas '05 (9/25/09)

John H. Maassen '42 (8/10/09)

George Franklin Moore (3/27/09)

Ralph Mouw '40 (8/14/09)

M. Carlyle Neckers '35 (7/24/09)

Mary Dalman '62 Ouellette (8/20/09)

Robert N. Peterson '58 (7/26/09)

Lloyd E. Poston-Huyser '53 (6/19/09)

Theresa Ruster '38 Reenders (8/24/09)

Marjorie Vyverberg '39 Rottschafer (10/1/09)

Phyllis Darrow '48 Severson (8/6/09)

Roland Simmelink '49 (7/7/09)

Francis T. Smith III '60 (9/11/09)

Evelyn Ver Mulm '45 Steele (7/7/09)

Charles A. Steketee '37 (10/9/09)

James G. Tysse '63 (1/6/06)

Isla Pruim '24 Van Eenenaam (8/1/09)

Jerome A. Veldhuis '49 (7/28/09)

Cecilia Ver Hage '27 (8/31/09)

Jerry L. Wiersma '59 (3/13/09)

Gregory T. Wood '83 (7/28/09)



William G. Anderson ’49 of Reading Center, N.Y., died peacefully at home on Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2009. He was 87.

He was born Oct. 19, 1921, in Glasgow, Scotland, the son of George and Lily Anderson. He attended high school in Hawthorne, N.J. After graduating from Hope, he earned an M.A. in administration from Albany State Teachers College. He did additional graduate work at the University of Rochester, UCLA, the University of Oklahoma and Oak Ridge in Tennessee.

He was a veteran who served as a technical sergeant in the U.S. Army Air Force from 1940 to 1945.

He taught science for two years in Poland, N.Y., and then for 20 years at the Dundee (N.Y.) Central School. He subsequently served Dundee Central School as vice principal and then as principal for 18 years before retiring.

He was a former member of Dundee Presbyterian Church, the Dundee Masonic Lodge, the Dundee Fire Department and Emergency Squad, the Dundee Village Planning Board, and the American Field Service.

He was an active board member of the town of Reading, volunteered for Schuyler Hospital Auxiliary and the Schuyler County Office of the Aging, and was a member of the Dundee Flying Club. He was an active communicant of St. Mary’s of the Lake Church in Watkins Glen, N.Y., where he served as a Stephen Minister and was a member of the Resurrection Choir. He had a passion for flying and for golf.

He was preceded in death by his former wife, Diana Hossick, and his sister, Margaret Brennan.

Survivors include his wife of 37 years, Kay Anderson.; his children, Douglas Anderson of Detroit, Mich., Mark Anderson of Kingsland, Ga., Joy Hodges of Reading Center, Timothy Hodges of Rochester, N.Y., and Kathleen Wilson of Scottsdale, Ariz.; and six grandchildren.


Mary Jane Mulder ’47 Baron of Holland, Mich., died on Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2009. She was 83.

She was born March 19, 1926, to Rev. John R. and Jeanette (Schoon) Mulder.

She was a member of Hope Church and a former member of Trinity Reformed Church.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Philip Baron ’46, in 1999, and an infant son, James Baron.

Survivors include her children, Jeff Baron of Zeeland, Mich., Mark (Laurie) Baron of Holland, and Amy (Steven) Dickerson of Zeeland; five grandchildren; and her sister, Joyce Mulder ’54 (Eugene ’50) Scholten of Holland.


Lloyd G. Beekman ’53 of Grand Haven, Mich., died on Sunday, Aug. 2, 2009. He was 81.

He was born Dec. 15, 1927, in Holland, Mich., to Russell and Fannie (Brueker) Beekman. He was a 1942 graduate of Grand Haven High School, and attended Michigan State University before graduating from Hope. He earned a master’s degree from the University of Michigan.

He was a veteran who served in the U.S. Air Force during World War II. He was a member, past honor guard member, ritual team member and past commander of the VFW Sgt. Alvin Jonker Post 2326.

He retired from Oakridge Junior High School, where he was a special education teacher and had also coached track and football.

He enjoyed camping, hiking, fishing, puzzles, chess, bowling and sports of all kinds.

He was preceded in death by an infant son; a great-granddaughter, Kelcie; a brother, Warren Beekman; and a sister, Betty Vrablic.

Survivors include his wife, Bobbie Beekman; a daughter, Sandra Moore of Grand Haven; a son, David (Pat) Beekman of Spring Lake, Mich.; four grandchildren; four great-grandchildren; and a brother, Alger Beekman of Kentwood, Mich.


Connie Nies ’56 Berghage of Fort Walton Beach, Fla., died on Tuesday, Aug. 25, 2009, after a courageous battle with cancer. She was 75.

She was born May 25, 1934, the daughter of Wallace and Agnes Nies, and grew up in Holland, Mich.

In 1955 she married Robert Dale Berghage ’56, who survives her. They spent their early years in the Chicago area, where they had three children. They moved to Grand Rapids, Mich., when the children were young, remaining there throughout the high school years. Connie and Bob moved to Winter Haven, Fla., in 1982 and to Fort Walton Beach in 1986.

Connie was a loving and supportive wife during many challenges. She was also a devoted daughter and daughter-in-law, and the world’s best mother. Always there for her children, she attended every school activity, officiated in the PTA, actively participated in Bluebirds and Cub Scouts, taught Sunday school, and closely guided her children to academic success and personal confidence. She kept her “family first” commitment throughout her life, once flying cross country just hours after a 2 a.m. call to help her daughter in a family medical emergency. She was a wonderful and loving grandmother.

Connie loved to read, had a tremendous intellect, and had the ability to draw even new acquaintances into a warm and interesting conversation about virtually anything. She was unforgettable.

She had several careers, including teaching junior high school English.

Survivors in addition to her husband, include their children, Robert (Jennifer) Berghage of State College, Pa., Barbara Nyenhuis of Waupaca, Wis., and Elizabeth (Ron) Nielsen of Niceville, Fla.; five grandchildren; and her brother, Harvey (Carol) Nies of Holland, Mich.


Marianne Wildschut ’59 Boonstra-Elzinga of Holland, Mich., died on Wednesday, Sept. 30, 2009. She was 71.

Marianne was an elegant and stylish woman with a tenacious and expansive spirit.

Born to Louis and Olga Wildschut, she was raised in Zeeland, Mich.

She was an excellent musician and piano teacher, teaching many students in her private studio. She especially enjoyed playing Chopin, Debussey and Gershwin for friends and family. She taught English and music throughout West Michigan. Her adventurous spirit led to teaching assignments in St. Croix, Ecuador and Costa Rica.

Marianne was an excellent host and cook. Her dinners were exquisite affairs with beautifully set tables, elegant flower arrangements, music and conversation. She was fond of gardening, reading, shopping, tennis and bicycling.

Survivors include her children, Kate Boonstra ’90 (Chad ’90) Dykema and Patrick (Renae) Boonstra; five grandchildren; and her siblings, Sylvia Wildschut ’61 (Jim ’61) Fox, Allen (Sandra) Wildschut, and Judy (Tim) Holdroyd.


Donald S. Botsford ’40 of West Palm Beach, Fla., died on Saturday, July 18, 2009. He was 90.

He was born to David W. and Neva (Charlesworth) Botsford, and graduated from Gowanda High School in 1936.

He served as a pilot in World War II and retired from military service as a major.

He was the South Florida representative for Niagara Therapy Products for many years.

He was very active in the Lakeside Presbyterian Church in West Palm Beach, serving in many capacities, including as a lay minister.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Violet (Wheeler) Botsford.

Survivors include his children, Mark Botsford of Florida and Bruce Botsford of Alabama; his sister, Jane (Botsford) Fisher of Boca Raton, Fla.; and several grandchildren and great-grandchildren.


R. Douglas “Doug” Burchett ’92 of Louisville, Ky., died at home on Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2009, after a hard-fought battle with brain cancer. Doug’s strength, courage and positive attitude throughout his fight were truly an inspiration to all who knew him. He was 38.

Doug was born in Grand Rapids, Mich., on Oct. 18, 1970.

He was a member of the Hope College track and cross country teams.

Doug graduated from Marquette University Law School, Milwaukee, Wis., in 1995.

He and his wonderful wife, Angie Stinebruner Burchett, were married on Nov. 18, 2000, in Louisville. Doug had two beautiful children, Ryan and Lily, who meant the world to him, and two younger brothers, Richard and Reid, whom he loved dearly.

Doug was a competitive distance runner, running in marathons, mini-marathons and other road races throughout the country, and continued running at a very high level even after his diagnosis with brain cancer. Doug was interested in politics and was an avid sports fan. He especially loved the Chicago Cubs, all University of Michigan teams and Marquette basketball. Doug was a member of Anchorage Presbyterian Church.

At the time of his death, Doug was an equity member in the Louisville law firm Blackburn Domene & Burchett, PLLC, where he practiced civil litigation and had recently developed a sports law practice. Doug began his legal career working as a public defender in Louisville.

Doug is survived by his wife, Angie, his son, Ryan, and his daughter, Lily; his mother, Patricia Kent, of Louisville; his father, Ronald Burchett, of Havelock, N.C.; his stepmother, Diane Burchett, of Elkhart, Ind; his brother and sister-in-law Richard and Beth Burchett and their daughter, Tava, of Grand Rapids, Mich.; his brother and sister-in-law Reid and Hillary Burchett and their daughter, Jaden, of Burr Oak, Mich.; his grandmother, Joy Kent, of Kentwood, Mich.; his father-in-law and mother-in-law, Ron and Susan Stinebruner, of Louisville; and his brother-in-law and sister-in-law, Scott and Terri Stinebruner, and their children, Katie, Ben and Emily, of Goshen, Ky., as well as countless aunts, uncles, cousins and friends, all of whom loved and respected Doug.


Carolyn Ringenoldus ’62 Condren of Pioneer, Calif., died at home on Saturday, July 4, 2009. She was 69.

She was born on March 27, 1940, in Charlevoix, Mich. She grew up along the coast of Lake Michigan and graduated from high school in Hull, Iowa. She lived in Pioneer for the past 36 years.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Bill Condren, and her parents, Harold ’34 (Dorothea Van Saun ’35) Ringenoldus.

Survivors include her sister, Ruth E. Baker.



Word has been received of the death of Mary L. DeWitt ’61 of Zeeland, Mich., who died on Tuesday, June 17, 2008. She was 70.


William E. French of Richardson Texas, died on Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2009, from complications due to ALS. He was 72.

He was born on Nov. 17, 1936, in Jackson, Mich., to Burt Edwin and Ruth Jameson French. “Willie” was beloved by his big sister, Alice.

The family lived in the Michigan cities of Detroit and then Livonia, where he graduated from Bentley High School.

He earned B.S. and M.S. degrees in geology and the first Ph.D. in oceanography from the University of Michigan.

After serving in the U.S. Army Reserves, he did post-graduate studies on Michigan’s Manitou Passage.

An Able-Bodied Seaman, he conducted the first comprehensive scientific studies of the Great Lakes. Employed in Washington, D.C., by the U.S. Naval Oceanographic office, he led anti-submarine warfare studies in the Pacific Ocean and Being Sea as the civilian chief scientist on the research ship Silas Bent.

From 1968 to 1972, he was assistant professor of geology at Hope, where he taught geology, oceanography and limnology.

He moved to Texas and worked across the U.S., Mexico, Panama and Liberia for RDS Leak-Tec and other companies as an environmental consultant.

In 1997 he returned to Michigan’s Sleeping Bear Dunes as its world expert to study its geology and landslides with the USGS.

He was a published scientist, registered Professional Geologist and Corrective Action Project Manager, and Scottish Clan Gunn descendent.

With family and work, he traveled to 50 states, all of the Canadian provinces, 22 European countries, four continents and three oceans. He loved the high seas and river cruising, especially engine rooms and locks. At home he loved NASA, working on cars, carpentry, remodeling and helping anyone, especially his grandson, fix anything. His quiet smile and gentle laugh will be missed.

Survivors include his wife of 51 years, Jacqueline French; his daughter (and Daddy’s girl), Heather; his son, Kirk (Jacqueline); and one grandson.


Albert Holland ’34 of Schenectady, N.Y., died on Sunday, Nov. 16, 2008. He was 99.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Lenore Sikkema ’34 Holland.


Elizabeth Dorothy “Dot” Lincoln ’38 Karl of Rotterdam Junction, N.Y., died on Sunday, Aug. 30, 2009. She was 94.

She was born in Rotterdam Junction on June 21, 1915, the daughter of Elizabeth (Sieper) Lincoln and Grey Curtis Lincoln. She graduated from Woestina School in 1933 as valedictorian of her class. She earned a master of teaching and librarian degree from Potsdam and SUNY-Albany.

She began her career in education teaching multiple grades in a one-room school in Pattersonville, N.Y. She educated hundreds of children in all grades, K-12, in the Rotterdam Junction-Pattersonville area. In 1976 she retired from the Schalmont Central School District as teacher-librarian at Woestina School.

She was a person of profound faith and was a very active and devoted member and friend of her church family, Woestina Dutch Reformed Church.

She loved to travel and, despite never learning to drive, she traveled extensively throughout the United States and many countries of the world, including Australia. She once flew an airplane. One of her most memorable trips was taken with her sister Marion to visit sister Jessie in Covina, Calif. They traveled by Amtrak from Amsterdam, N.Y., northwest through the Canadian Rockies, down the West Coast, and returned several weeks later through the Southwest and through the Atlantic States back home.

She was also recognized by many as a historian of the local Mohawk Valley community. Her ability to recall in detail the names of past students and their acts of humor or humanity was simply astounding. She had knowledge of much local folklore.

She lived a life of self-giving love. She was loved for it by those who knew her best. She died with peace in her heart.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Frederick Karl, in 1971; and by her brother, Curtis Lincoln, and two sisters, Jessie VanTassel and Marion Olenhouse.

Survivors include her son, Randall Karl of Rotterdam Junction, and seven grandsons.


Edward Kassig ’49 of Indianapolis, Ind., died at his home on Friday, Sept. 4, 2009. He was 84.

He was born in New York City on June 13, 1925, to Julius and Elizabeth Kassig. He graduated from Bryant High school and attended Queens College.

He was a veteran who served as a U.S. Army medical lab technician from 1943 to 1946. He trained at Fort Benjamin Harrison and met his wife in the lab at Methodist Hospital.

In addition to Hope, where he was a member of the Knickerbocker fraternity, Ed also earned a degree from Butler University.

He taught science and served as a department head from 1950 to 1988 at Broad Ripple High School in Indianapolis.

He will be remembered as a beloved husband, caring father and a happy grandpa.

He faithfully served his church, St. Peter’s (formerly Carrolton Avenue) UCC, in many roles.

He enjoyed reading, crosswords, the Yankees and the seashore at Cape Hatteras.

Survivors include his wife of 62 years, Elizabeth Rippy Kassig; his brother, Julius Kassig; his children, Edward (Paula) Kassig, Erik Kassig, and Julia (Matthew) McCormick; and three grandchildren.


Henry J. Kinkema ’36 of Kalamazoo, Mich., died on Wednesday, July 1, 2009. He was 95.

In addition to graduating from Hope, he earned a degree in pharmacy at Ferris State University.

He was employed as a pharmacist his entire working life by The Upjohn Company.

On July 19, 1940, he married Lois LaRue Ketal in Holland, Mich. She preceded him in death in 2008.

During his retirement years, he and his wife lived at Glen Lake until returning to Kalamazoo to live at Friendship Village. While at Glen Lake, they were members of Glen Lake Community Church. He was a very active and longtime member of Bethany Reformed Church and was also a longtime member of the Rotary Club.

In addition to his wife, he was preceded in death by his siblings, Percy Kinkema ’25 and Marguerite Kinkema ’31.

Survivors include his children, Robert (Lucille) Kinkema of Lincoln Park, Mich., Joan Hall of Bay City, Mich., and David (Pam) Kinkema of Fort Worth, Texas; six grandchildren; 14 great-grandchildren; and many great-great-grandchildren.


Leroy Lovelace ’59 died on Tuesday, April 22, 2008, in Brewton, Ala. He was 81.

He was a veteran who served in the armed forces during and after World War II.

He worked for the U.S. Postal Service and then taught English at Wendell Phillips High School in Chicago, Ill. He also taught for many years in a summer college preparatory program in Maine for recent graduates from poorly performing high schools.


Adam Christopher Lucas ’05 of Clarksville, Mich., died on Friday, Sept. 25, 2009. He was 26.

He was born Nov. 10, 1982, and graduated from Thornapple-Kellogg Schools.

He enjoyed church activities and sports.

Survivors include his parents, Phillip and Voni (Moerland) Lucas; his siblings, Ross (Kylie) Lucas, Sarah (Kenny) Soldatke, and Corey Lucas; and his grandparents, Abraham ’50 (Elin Veenschoten ’52) Moreland and Girard Veenschoten ’41.


John H. Maassen ’42 of Venice, Fla., died on Monday, Aug. 10, 2009. He was 89.

He was born in Zeeland, Mich., and moved to Venice in 2000 from Holland, Mich.

He was a veteran who served in the U.S. Army during World War II.

He earned his divinity degree from Western Theological Seminary. He was a retired Reformed Church in America minister who served pastorates in New York, Michigan, Wisconsin, Iowa and Illinois. He was the field secretary for the Synod of Mid-America and later served on the staff of the Crystal Cathedral in Garden Grove, Calif.

He was a member of Venice Presbyterian Church and a member of the volunteer auxiliary at Venice Regional Medical Center.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Harriet Muyskens ’47 Maassen, and his siblings, Hermina Maassen ’44 and Pierce Maassen ’50.

Survivors include his daughters, Elizabeth Maassen ’71 (Robert) Piel of Venice, Mary Kohmiller of Gilroy, Calif., Susan Maassen ’77 (John ’72) Toren of Shawnee, Kansas, and Janet Menzie of Katy, Texas; his son, Stephen Maassen of Godfrey, Ill.; two sisters, Gertrude Maassen ’47 Vander Haar of Holland, Mich., and Leona Posthuma of Waupun, Wis.; 13 grandchildren; and one great-grandchild.


George Franklin Moore died on Friday, March 27, 2009, of myocarditis. He was 21 months old.

Survivors included his parents, Clint ’98 and Lara Wagner ’98 Moore, and his older brother, Jackson William.


Ralph J. Mouw ’40 of Orange City, Iowa, died on Friday, Aug. 14, 2009. He was 90.

He was born on May 27, 1919, in Orange City, the son of Otto Henry and Sarah (Lubbers) Mouw. He was raised on a farm near Orange City, where he attended Northwestern Classical Academy and Junior College. He then transferred to Hope. He earned a master’s degree at the University of Iowa in Iowa City. He studied further at Michigan State University and the University of New Mexico.

He was a veteran who served in the U.S. Army during World War II, participating in D-Day at Utah Beach and achieving the rank of captain.

On Oct. 27, 1943, he married Genevieve Marie Slothouber in Orange City, where they made their home. He was a professor at Northwestern College, where he taught mathematic and physics.

In 1983 Ralph and his wife began wintering in Florida.

He was a mathematics and physics professor at Northwestern College.

He was a member of Trinity Reformed Church, where he served on the consistory as both an elder and a deacon and attended Sunday School. For many years he taught the college Sunday school class. In Florida, the Mouws attended the United Methodist Church of Englewood, where Ralph was involved in the Lamplighters Sunday school class (often begin asked to offer prayer) and the Monday morning men’s prayer breakfast.

He was a member of Pressman-Kosters American Legion Post and the N Club at Northwestern.

He served as scorekeeper and timer for Northwestern games. He was active in the Orange City Tulip Festival activities, including serving on the steering committee, manning the Windmill information booth, giving tours, and helping build floats and night show sets. For their efforts, Ralph and Genevieve were honored one year as grand marshals of the parade.

He enjoyed bike riding, gardening, reading and traveling.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Genevieve Mouw, in 1995, and four siblings, including Henry ’40 (Emily Bielefeld ’41) Mouw.

Survivors include his children, James (Brenda) Mouw of Payson, Ariz., Sandi (Doug) Carlson of Orange City, and Edwin (Debbie) Mouw of Dumont, Iowa; seven grandchildren; 13 great-grandchildren; a brother, Vernon (Mary) Mouw of Orange City; two sisters-in-law, Violet Mouw of Orange City and Aletha Mouw of Sheldon, Iowa.


M. Carlyle Neckers ’35 of Holland, Mich., died on Friday, July 24, 2009, after a brief illness. He was 96.

He was born in Clymer, N.Y., on Aug. 18, 1912. He was a proud Hope graduate and an extremely loyal supporter of the college. Since 1992 he rarely missed any Hope event, including nearly every home men’s and women’s basketball game and most music events.

He was a music major at Hope, and was the organist and choral director for numerous civic and church groups in the Western New York area.

He was the former owner of the Clymer (N.Y.) Department Store and other businesses, and was subsequently a choral music teacher in the Sherman and Ripley schools in New York.

In his retirement years, he spent his summers at Chautauqua Institution, where he sang in the choir. He also logged more than 4,000 hours as a volunteer in the finance office of Holland Hospital, before his “final” retirement in June.

He was a lifelong member of Abbe Reformed Church of Clymer.

He was preceded in death by his wife of 60 years, Doris Van Lente ’36 Neckers, in 1996; his brother, James W. Neckers ’23; and an infant great-grandson, Stuart VanderLeek.

Survivors include his three sons, Douglas C. ’60 (Suzanne Evans ’60) Neckers of Perrysburg, Ohio, and Bruce W. ’65 (Susie Sonneveldt ’67) Neckers, and Craig ’71 (Joan Hendricks ’74) Neckers, all of Grand Rapids, Mich.; eight grandchildren, including Matthew ’93 (Erin) Neckers of Eden, Vt., Melissa Neckers ’95 (Scott) VanderLeek of Grand Rapids, Joel ’01 (Kimberly) Neckers of Denver, Colo., and Todd Neckers ’04 and Scott Neckers ’07, both of Grand Rapids; and three great-grandchildren.


Mary Ellen Dalman ’62 Ouellette of Holland, Mich., died on Thursday, Aug. 20, 2009, at her home. She was 69.

She attended Hope, the University of Evansville and Western Michigan University, earning a bachelor’s degree in education and a master’s degree in multimedia.

She worked in the Hamilton and West Ottawa school systems for more than 20 years.

She was a member of Hope Church, a board member of Friends of the Library for Herrick District Library, and she spent a lifetime as a volunteer for the Holland community.

She was an avid supporter of all of her grandchildren, and will forever be remembered at the #1 fan at all of their activities.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Laverne C. ’28 and Grace Dalman.

Survivors include her children, Angela Ouellette of Norton Shores, Mich., and Ed (Jody) Ouellette of Holland; four grandchildren; and her brother, Ronald (Jessie) Dalman.


Robert N. Peterson ’58 of Niskayuna, N.Y., died on Sunday, July 26, 2009, following a long illness. He was 72.

He was married on Aug. 8, 1958 to June Short ’59, who survives him.

He graduated from New Brunswick Theological Seminary, and also earned a certificate of pastoral counseling from the Syracuse Pastoral Counseling Center.

He was a pastor who served the following churches: Linlithgo Reformed Church in Livingston, N.Y.; Second Reformed Church in Coxsackie, N.Y.; Riverside Community Reformed Church in Cleveland, Ohio; Christ Community Reformed Church in Utica, N.Y.; and Bethany Reformed Church in Albany, N.Y. He also served as interim pastor in Claverack, N.Y., and Catskill, N.Y. Most recently he served as assistant minister at the Niskayuna Reformed Church. He had also served as president of the Synod of Albany, president of the Albany and Montgomery classes and stated clerk of the Synod of Albany, and he sat on various synod and classis committees.

Survivors in addition to his wife of 50 years, June, include his sons, David (Malinda) Peterson and James (Mary) Peterson; four grandchildren; and his sister, Suzanne.


Lloyd E. Poston-Huyser ’53 of Indianapolis, Ind., died on Friday, June 19, 2009. He was 78.

He was born to Stanley and Gertrude Huyser in Holland, Mich., on Sept. 13, 1930. He graduated from Holland High School.

He was a veteran who served in the U.S. Army from 1953 to 1955 with the C.I.A. in the Far East during the Korean conflict.

Upon receiving an honorable discharge from the military, he moved to Indianapolis to attend John Herron School of Art, now part of Indiana University. While there, he entered a Herron competition to design murals for Riley Hospital for Children. He won first place with his colorful, edgy entries, each of which captured a James Whitcomb Riley poem in a single angular design. He was commissioned to render his creations on the walls of Riley’s Kiwanis Waiting Room.

Lloyd earned his M.A. degree in art education from Indiana University.

He was an art educator who first served at Floral Park High School in New York City, returning to Indiana a year later as he and his partner, Gene R. Poston, had decided to settled in Indianapolis. He continued his career in art education, teaching in both the middle school and high school of Center Grove School Corporation.

He was an artist, educator, gardener and fine food aficionado.

Survivors include his partner of more than 52 years, Gene R. Poston, and his brother, Earl S. ’51 (Barbara) Huyser of Lawrence, Kansas.


Theresa Ruster ’38 Reenders of Grand Haven, Mich., died on Monday, Aug. 24, 2009. She was 93.

She was born on May 13, 1916, in Grand Haven to Abram and Lena (Verhoeks) Ruster, and graduated from Grand Haven High School.

She married Gerald N. Reenders on Dec. 29, 1937, in LaGrange, Ind. He preceded her in death on Nov. 23, 1998.

For many years she taught in the Grand Haven Area Public Schools and assisted her husband in the family farming operation.

She was an active member of First Reformed Church, having taught catechism and Sunday school. She was also a member of the Michigan Association of Retired School Personnel and the Grand Haven Band and Orchestra Parents Club.

In addition to her husband, Gerald, she was preceded in death by her daughter and son-in-law, Theodora Reenders ’62 (William) Nehring, and one grandson.

Survivors include her son, Dean (Karen) Reenders of Grand Haven; five grandchildren; and 11 great-grandchildren.


Marjorie Vyverberg ’39 Rottschafer of Holland, Mich., formerly of Grand Rapids, Mich., died on Thursday, Oct. 1, 2009. She was 93.

She joins her beloved husband, Bill (William O. Rottschafer ’23), in heaven.

She was born to Adrian and Cornelia (Vanden Bout) Vyverberg in Rochester, N.Y.

She volunteered extensively in her community and her churches. She was a member of Central Reformed Church and Bethany Reformed Church in Grand Rapids, and Third Reformed Church in Holland. From 1977 to 1985 she was led to volunteer at Southern Norman School in Brewton, Ala., where the day care center is now called Rottschafer Day Care.

Survivors include her children, Mark ’65 (Annabelle) Rottschafer of Atlanta, Ga., Kirk ’67 (Lynn) Rottschafer of Grand Rapids, Tom (Nancy) Rottschafer of Holland, and Bill (Laura) Rottschafer of Holland; 10 grandchildren, including Shelli Rottschafer ’96, Krista Rottschafer ’06 Heemstra, Julia Rottschafer ’08 and Kelli Rottschafer ’13; four great-grandchildren; her brother, Richard Vyverberg of Rochester, N.Y.; and her sister, Nancy Vyverberg ’51 (Clayton ’49) Van Hall of Midland, Mich.


Phyllis Darrow ’48 Severson of Holland, Mich., died on Thursday, Aug. 6, 2009. She was 82.

She taught elementary school music for 35 years, most recently in the Holland Public Schools.

She was a member of Calvary Baptist Church in Holland.

She was a gifted vocalist, organist and pianist. She served many years as organist and choir director at Holland’s First Baptist Church.

Phyllis loved God and had steadfast faith in Him. She struggled 40 years with multiple sclerosis, yet was neither bitter nor complaining. Instead, she fought the battle with dignity, never losing her love for laughter or her ability to carry on a conversation with enthusiasm and wisdom. She had a wonderful smile and was a great blessing and testimony to the love of God to everyone who knew and met her. Her talent for music was exceeded only by her ability to face adversity with extreme grace. She was a wonderful wife and mother, and will be sorely missed by her family.

She was preceded in death by her daughter, Bonny Elaine Topp.

Survivors include her husband, Jack Severson; her daughter, Amy Kamps; four grandchildren; one great-grandchild; and her son-in-law, Bill Topp.


Roland J. Simmelink ’49 of Orange City, Iowa, died on Tuesday, July 7, 2009, at home. He was 81.

He was born on Jan. 2, 1928, in Oostburg, Wis., the son of Willis and Florence (Ten Haken) Simmelink. He was raised in Oostburg, where he graduated from high school.

After graduating from Hope, he went to the George Peabody Teachers College in Nashville, Tenn., and the North American Baptist Seminary in Sioux Falls, S.D.

He was a veteran who served in the U.S. Army during the Korean conflict.

On Dec. 12, 1952, he married Winifred Reuvers at the First Reformed Church of Sheldon, Iowa. They made their home in Grand Haven, Mich., Annville, Ky., and Orange City, and then retired to Bella Vista, Ariz. This spring they returned to Orange City.

He was a teacher and principal in junior and senior high schools. He also served as director of the Annville Institute for many years. Additionally, he served Northwestern College as professor of Christian education and administrator in the department of financial aid.

He was a member of Trinity Reformed Church. He served on the General Program Council of the Reformed Church in America and the Fine Arts board of directors of Bella Vista. He also directed numerous church choirs and choral groups. He enjoyed music and flower gardening.

Survivors include his wife of more than 56 years, Winifred Simmelink; four sons, Jim (Delores) Simmelink of Adair, Iowa, and Scott (Lila) Simmelink, Ross (Judy) Simmelink, and Randy (Barb) Simmelink, all of Orange City; 12 grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren; and three siblings, Phyllis (Neil) Vander Ploeg of Oostburg, Ken ’65 (Lee) Simmelink of Elizabethton, Tenn., and Carol (Marvin) Hengst of Oostburg.


Francis T. (Tom) Smith III ’60 of North Fort Myers, Fla., died on Friday, Sept. 11, 2009. He was 75. He had previously been a resident of Peoria, Ill., for 38 years.

He was born in Detroit, Mich., on June 14, 1934, to Francis Thomas Smith Jr. and Maxine Greene Smith.

He earned a master’s degree in health administration from Wayne State University in 1961.

He worked for the Tuberculosis Association in Springfield and Peoria, Ill., from 1961 to 1966. From 1966 until retirement in 2000, he was administrator of Allied Agencies Center in Peoria.

He served on numerous community boards, along with being a member of many different organizations. His latest endeavor was the Stephen Ministries.

Survivors include his wife of 26 years, E. Jane Smith; his son, T.J. Smith; his daughter, Karen; two step-daughters; and five grandsons.


Evelyn Vermulm ’45 Steele of Grand Rapids, Mich., died on Tuesday, July 7, 2009. She was 89.

She was born May 18, 1920, in Conrad, Mont., to Albert and Fannie Vermulm. She graduated from the Deaconess School of Nursing in Great Falls, Mont., in 1941, and also from Hope.

In 1945 she married Rev. Harland Steele ’44, who preceded her in death in 1979. For more than 50 years she was active in the Reformed Church throughout western Michigan. She was also a nurse at the Christian Rest Home and volunteered at Hospice and Marketplace Ministries for many years.

She enjoyed playing the piano and, above all, visiting with friends and family. She was forever a farm girl at heart.

Survivors include her daughter, Nikki ’70 (Richard) Steele-Detrich of Boquete, Panama; her sons, Mark (Dorita) Steele of Phoenix, Ariz., and Terry (Marcia) Steele of Oshkosh, Wis.; seven grandchildren; three great-grandchildren; and her sister, Helen Davis, of Conrad, Mont.


Charles A. Steketee ’37 of Holland, Mich., died on Friday, Oct. 9, 2009. He was 93.

He was a professor emeritus of mathematics at Hope, where he taught from 1946 to 1981. The Jay Folkert and Charles Steketee Mathematics Research Fund at Hope is named in honor of him and colleague Dr. Jay Folkert ’39.

As a student at Hope, he had been a member of the Fraternal Society, the Chapel Choir, the Men’s Glee Club, the Double Quartet and Operetta.

After graduating from Hope, he completed a master’s degree at the University of Michigan. He subsequently taught mathematics in the Howell (Mich.) Public Schools for eight years before returning to Hope to teach.

In addition to teaching introductory mathematics courses, he developed the college’s high school teaching-methods course and taught college geometry. He was the initial faculty sponsor of the college’s Nu Beta Chapter of the Alpha Phi Omega national service organization, and advised the chapter for more than 20 years. Early in his career at Hope he was a faculty representative on the Student Council, he was a longtime member of the college’s Athletic Committee and coordinated ticket sales, and he was also a member of the Commencement Committee throughout his time on the faculty. For many years he had also served as Holland’s official weather observer after the U.S. Department of Commerce requested that the college furnish the service.

He was a member of Hope Church, where he was involved as an elder, deacon and choir member.

Charles enjoyed gardening and following the Hope College athletic teams.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Beatrice Kline ’40 Steketee, in 1968, and his siblings, Leonard (Cornelia) Steketee, Raymond ’30 (Amelia) Steketee, and Helene (Harmen) Rysenga.

Survivors include his son, Paul ’70 (Sally) Steketee of Lombard, Ill.; one grandson; one great-grandson; and a brother-in-law, Raymond Ter Beek of Holland.


James G. Tysse ’63 of Millersburg, Ohio, died on Monday, Jan. 16, 2006. He was 64.

He was preceded in death by his parents, James W. ’34 and Arloa VanPeursem ’33 Tysse, and his sister, Judith Tysse ’60 Lubbers.

Survivors include his wife, Kathleen Tysse; his children, Cynthia Tysse-Foresta and Garret Tysse; two grandchildren; and his brother, G. John ’68 (Janet) Tysse.


Isla Gladys Pruim ’24 Van Eenenaam of Holland, Mich., died on Saturday, Aug. 1, 2009. She was 106.

She was born in Zeeland, Mich., on Nov. 17, 1902, the daughter of Evert Pruim and Alyda Everhard Pruim.

After graduating from Hope, she taught music and art at Zeeland High School for four years. She married Gordon F. Van Eenenaam ’24 on June 4, 1928, and moved to Muskegon, where Gordon had established his law practice. Shortly thereafter, he was elected to the State Senate, and they commuted back and forth between Lansing and Muskegon through the early 1930s. Isla was his ardent Republican supporter.

While raising their family, Isla was very active in the Muskegon community, serving the YWCA as president of its board, president of the Muskegon County Council of Church Women, member of the RCA Board of World Missions and the Central Youth Committee, member of Central Reformed Church and serving other local Reformed churches as president of the Missionary Union.

Following the death of her husband in 1959, she moved to Holland to become a head resident at Voorhees women's residence hall at Hope College. She later became the Dean of Women at the college, retiring from the office in 1968. In 1974 she received a Hope College Distinguished Alumnus Award. She was the oldest living active member of the Sorosis Sorority (Sigma Sigma). The I.VE League organization was formed in her honor to promote leadership skills among women on Hope's Campus. The Isla Pruim and Gordon F. Van Eenenaam Family Endowed Scholarship Fund was also established.

She was a member of Century Club and PEO.

In addition to being a speaker and lecturer, Isla was a gifted vocalist, with a beautiful “mellow” soprano voice. She sang frequently as a soloist, in duets and trios and choirs, and also directed choral groups.

Isla loved being with people and was an exceptional hostess. She was an independent woman serving as a role model for many. She lived her life firmly grounded in the Christian faith, encouraging and teaching, by word and example, that life must be lived in partnership with God through Christ. She was a longtime member of Hope Church of Holland. In spite of strongly held beliefs on many topics, she was an empathetic listener and had many friends and admirers of all ages.

To her family she was a woman of unconditional love, acceptance, encouragement and support. She was a vibrant personality, full of life and good humor.

In addition to her husband, she was preceded in death by a grandson, John A. Van Eenenaam.

Survivors include her children, John P. ’51 (Marianne Wierks ’56) Van Eenenaam of Grand Haven, Mich., David O. ’57 (Elena Bylsma ’58) Van Eenenaam of Watertown, N.Y., and Isla Van Eenenaam ’59 (Victor) Ver Meulen of West Olive, Mich.; 11 grandchildren, including Susan Van Eenenaam ’80 (Orlando) Fiallo of San Juan, Puerto Rico, D. Peter ’83 (Dacia VanZanten ’85) Van Eenenaam of Watertown, N.Y., Sarah Van Eenenaam ’84 (Jeffrey ’84) Hanson of Jackson Hole, Wy., Jim ’88 (Sblenda) Van Eenenaam of Dana Point, Calif., Kate Van Eenenaam ’88 (John) Wilson of Manlius, N.Y., David ’89 (Heather Wightman ’93) Ver Meulen of Winnetka, Ill., Julie Van Eenenaam ’92 (Chris) Barrett of Managua, Nicaragua, Timothy ’93 (Kristin) Ver Meulen of Ada, Mich., and Dirk ’96 (Starr) Ver Meulen of Atlanta, Ga.; and 30 great-grandchildren.


Jerome A. Veldhuis ’49 of Sandy Springs, Ga., died on Tuesday, July 28, 2009. He was 91.

Survivors include his wife, Alice Laughlin ’46 Veldhuis.


Cecilia Ver Hage ’27 of Zeeland, Mich., died on Monday, Aug. 31, 2009. She was 103.

In addition to graduating from Hope, she attended Davenport Business College.

She taught school for 14 years in Constantine, Mich., and 26 years at Zeeland High School, where she taught French and business.

Her retirement year were spent traveling extensively around the world.

She was a former member of First Reformed Church in Zeeland, the Ladies’ Aid Society, the Zeeland Historical Society, the Hospital Guild, the MEA, ASWA, the Literary Club and many educational organizations.

She is survived by nieces and nephews, Celia Kleinheksel, Dale and Judy Yntema, George and Vickie Buttles, Paul ’59 (Janet Wessels ’59) Elzinga, and Marshall Elzinga.


Jerry L. Wiersma ’59 of Norton Shores, Mich., died at home on Friday, March 13, 2009, following a nine-year battle with cancer. He was 76.

He was born Oct. 5, 1932, in Muskegon, Mich., to Edwin and Clara (Olson) Wiersma, and had been a life-long resident of the area.

He was a veteran who served in the U.S. Air Force during the Korean War.

He graduated from Western Michigan University.

He retired in 1991 as director of human resources for Consumers Power Co., where he had been employed for more than 30 years. In 1992 he became co-owner of West Michigan Power Cleaning Systems Inc. with his son, Jerry Jr.. Professionally he was known for his fairness, and personally for his quick wit. He will be sadly missed.

He belonged to the Jaycees, Lion’s Club and Muskegon Rotary, and was an honorary life member of Muskegon Elk’s Lodge #274, where he served as Exalted Ruler three times. In 1978, while Exalted Ruler, Jerry’s team won the National Ritual Competition in San Diego, Calif. Nay-sayers had said it could not be done by such a small lodge. With others, he was instrumental in establishing the Muskegon Elk’s Park Campground, where he and others tirelessly cleared trees and worked to attain funding for the now thriving campground. For many years, Jerry was in charge of the annual Jaycees “Exhausted Rooster Stag.”

Jerry began serving the city of Norton Shores on it zoning board and planning commission before he began his 18-year tenure on the city council. He had served as the mayor of Norton Shores since 2005.

He enjoyed volunteering, cars, planes and jazz music.

On Oct. 8, 1955, he married Lois Ann Kuziak. He was her loving caregiver the past 10 years, after she was stricken with rheumatoid arthritis and a debilitating stroke.

He was preceded in death by his siblings, Phyllis Tourre, Roger Wiersma, Shirley Bailey and Marjorie Horness.

Survivors include his wife, Lois Wiersma; five children, Cheryl (David) Gaudette of Montague, Mich., Tom Wiersma of Rothbury, Mich., Joy Wiersma of Spring Lake, Mich., and Patricia (Forrest) Stoevsand and Jerry (Janelle) Wiersma Jr., all of Norton Shores; nine grandchildren; one sister, Joyce (Kenneth) Johnson of North Muskegon, Mich.; and one brother, Jack (Olga) Wiersma of Norton Shores.


Gregory T. Wood ’83 of Brooklyn, Mich., died unexpectedly of heart failure on Tuesday, July 28, 2009. He was 48.

He was a graduate of Pioneer High School in Ann Arbor, Mich.

He was a sales director with Global Industries.

Greg was an avid player of any game with a ball where you could play to win. He particularly loved golf, a game he played first with his father and grandfather as a young man, and then with the many longtime friends that he made throughout the years.

Greg had exuberance for life that few could resist, and he will be remembered for filling every room he entered with laughter and joy.

Survivors include his father, Richard Wood; his stepmother, Bette; his sister, Susan; the Strickland family, Charlie, Sue, Ashley and Sara Jane; numerous aunts, uncles and cousins; and many faithful friends - his brothers in the true sense of the word.