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June 2014 Obituaries
Gertrude Jalving '33 Kleinheksel (4/10/14)
Donald Cordes '40 (4/22/14)
James Riekse '41 (4/8/14)
Anita Vogt '41 Willis (4/28/14)
Dayton Smith Jr. '42 (3/11/14)
Frank Lepori '43 (4/21/13)
Ruth Probst '47 Vines (4/15/13)
Leona Overbeek '47 Voss (3/9/14)
Renze Hoeksema Sr. '48 (4/14/14)
L'bertha Visscher '48 Rycenga (3/13/14)
Jean Wiersma '49 Weener (3/20/14)
Jean Rivenburgh '50 Cook (3/17/14)
Carl Van Raalte '50 (3/27/14)
John Bremer '52 (4/1/14)
JoAnn VanderWerp '52 Dobben (5/4/14)
Rodger Kramer '52 (3/21/14)
Norman Rieck '53 (4/29/14)
Joan Van Wingeren '56 Retsema (4/17/14)
Robert Van Ark '57 (3/20/14)
Rosemarie Kish '58 Evenhuis (5/6/14)
John Van Dyke Jr. '58 (4/26/14)
Clyde LaTarte '60 (3/28/14)
Rodney Iwema '62 (3/29/14)
David Musser '63 (3/28/14)
Robert VanEtten '63 (3/13/14)
James Hawkins '64 (4/2/14)
Harvey Hoffman '64 (3/15/14)
Robert Barrows '65 (3/17/14)
Jay VanHoven '66 (4/14/14)
Roger Davis '85 (3/28/14)
Muriel Achterhof (4/11/14)
Brenda Crisp (4/30/14)
Joan Swierenga (5/8/14)
Gertrude joined her husband, Henry Kleinheksel ’36, her four brothers and three sisters, and all of her old friends as she crossed the Crystal Sea into heaven. She was born on November 11, 1911, and spent her entire 102 years in Holland. Her siblings were Clarence, Andrew, Jennie (George) Kolean, Gary, Henry, Josie (Bill) Diephuis and Reka (Ray) Lamer.
She is survived by her five children, John (Sharon Van’tKerkhoff ’60) Kleinheksel Sr. ’60 of Holland, Paul (Jacki) Kleinheksel ’63 of Holland, Russell (Pamela) Kleinheksel ’66 of Azusa, California, Joanne (Paul) Hettinga of Indian Head Park, Illinois, and Martha (Bill) VanderMarel of Ancaster, Ontario, Canada; 12 grandchildren; 20 great-grandchildren; many adoring nieces and nephews; and sister-in-law, Bernice Kolenbrander.
Raised in Harderwyk Christian Reformed Church, she was a near charter member of Maplewood RCA congregation along with her husband. She married Henry in 1936. Gertrude graduated first in her class at Hope Preparatory High School in 1929. Her great-grandson, Cadan Kleinheksel, is a fourth generation student at Hope College.
Donald Cordes ’40 of Des Moines, Iowa, died died peacefully on Tuesday, April 22, 2014 at Kavanaugh House on 56th Street. He was 97. Don was born December 31, 1917, the second of three children born to Theodore and Fannie (Osterloo) Cordes.
Raised in the small town of German Valley, Illinois, (population 140) he was eager to expand his horizons. After graduating from Hope College in Holland, Michigan, he attended the University of Michigan in Ann Harbor where he received his Master's Degree in Philosophy, intending to be a minister. However, he did not feel called to the ministry, choosing instead to help others through his work in hospital administration. While studying at Columbia University and working at St. Luke's Hospital in New York City, he met his wife Harriet Davies and brought her with him to Des Moines in 1947.
From 1947 to 1983 he was the CEO of Iowa Methodist Medical Center, the longest tenured administrator in hospital history. During his tenure he doubled the bed capacity of the hospital, overseeing the construction of seven buildings including the current North and South wings, Younker Rehabilitation Center, Helen Powell Center, the main building of the current Blank Children's Hospital and the recently demolished school of nursing. He opened the first adult psychiatric unit in a community hospital and the first alcohol treatment center in the state. In addition he inaugurated the chaplaincy program, rehabilitation services and the poison control center and integrated the Des Moines Child Guidance Center with Blank Hospital, offering psychological services to children.
He also spearheaded the affiliation of hospital schools of nursing in Des Moines with Drake University and a residency program for hospital administrators, serving as an Instructor and Assistant Professor of Health Care Administrators at Washington University in St. Louis and Preceptor of Graduate Programs in Hospital Administration at both Washington University and the University of Chicago. He was very helpful in the development and promotion of the Pastoral Counseling Center in Des Moines. He was involved in several professional organizations including the Iowa Hospital Association, Upper Midwest Hospital Conference, the National Association of Methodist Hospitals and Homes and National League of Nursing. He was most proud of his Gold Medal Award of Excellence in Hospital Administration from the American College of Hospital Administrators and the Distinguished Service Award from the American Hospital Association. His papers have been collected and are currently located at the Center for Hospital and Healthcare Administration History in Chicago.
When not working, he enjoyed bowling, golf, bridge, documentary films and his daily New York Times.
Don was preceded in death by his parents, brother Emerson (Bette) Cordes, sister Lucille (Charles) Starr, wife Harriet and daughter Beverly. He is survived by his daughter Karen Cordes (Bill Davis), his niece Cynthia (John)Helt who was by his side throughout his final days, and nephews Tim (Vicky) Cordes, Warren (Julie) Starr and Ray Starr.
He was a remarkable man, husband, father, grandfather and physician, who never stopped learning and growing and who could still give a contestant on Jeopardy a run for his money even a week before his death. He was a prominent obstetrician and gynecologist at Butterworth Hospital where he practiced from 1950 to 1988, delivering over 7,200 babies; it’s likely that almost everyone in town knows someone he delivered.
He served as Chief of Staff of Butterworth from 1985 to 1987, Chairman of the OB- GYN Department from 1961 to 1965, and the President of West Michigan OB-GYN from 1970 to 1988. Dedicated to women’s health, he helped found Planned Parenthood of Kent County and served as its Medical Director from 1965 to 1972. While still practicing, Jim became frustrated with the fact that West Michigan doctors were having to borrow money to pay their malpractice insurance premiums and came up with the idea of creating the Michigan Professional Insurance Exchange, originally an organization jointly owned by Butterworth Hospital and participating doctors which has since expanded to include much of the western Michigan medical community.
He served as the Exchange’s medical director from 1988 to 2000. Working always with quiet eff ectiveness, Jim contributed to the community in ways almost too numerous to name. During the turbulent 1960s, he served on the Grand Rapids Human Relations Commission, helping to foster improved race relations in the community. He put his beliefs into practice as a founder and board member of Neighborhood Health Services, which delivered free health care to the poor. He helped to organize and served on the board of Park School, an educational program for pregnant teenagers run by the Board of Education and housed at facilities of the Salvation Army. He was a member of the Mayor’s Committee of 100, a group organized to plan for the future of the city of Grand Rapids and to fi nd solutions to existing problems. He also served as a member of the Planning Committee for the United Way of Kent County.
Jim was born in Grand Rapids on December 13, 1919 to Henry and Lucretia Riekse, both children of Dutch immigrants. His early life was greatly shaped by the Depression, when his family lost their house and he needed to help make ends meet by selling wood with his father and delivering meat and Liberty Magazines starting at age 11. He had a beautiful singing voice and could earn an extra 25 cents for every solo he sang during church performances. Jim was the fi rst member of his family to attend college, and he graduated from Hope College in 1941. Hope College recognized Jim with its Distinguished Alumni Award in 2000, and has since graduated two of his children and seven of his grandchildren. During his last year at Hope, he was concerned that his dream of attending medical school would be jeopardized by his fi nal exam grade in organic chemistry. To his great relief and the good fortune of the medical community, fi nal exams were cancelled that year due to a visit to Holland by Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands. Due to the outbreak of World War II, Jim had to complete medical school at the University of Michigan in two and a half years, and immediately upon his graduation received his commission as a Captain in the Medical Corps of the U. S. Army. While an intern at Butterworth Hospital, he noticed a fetching young nurse by a drinking fountain, and had the good sense to marry Helena Braendle fi ve months later. They celebrated the 69th anniversary of their extraordinary marriage and partnership in January, marking that considerable achievement with the 28 people whose lives they helped to create. Jim’s faith and his church have been the bedrock of his life; he and Helena have been members of Central Reformed Church for over 50 years, where Jim served as an Elder and Vice President of the Consistory. Whenever a board or task force was created to address an issue, Jim was on it. Whether contributing to the life of his church, his medical community or the community at large, Jim never cared whether he received credit; he saw needs and he worked tirelessly to meet them. That life improved for those around him was all that mattered. Jim was preceded in death by his son, Jim Riekse Jr. his son-in-law, Jack Zepp, and his brother and sister-in-law Martin and Agnes Riekse. Jim will be lovingly remembered by his wife, Helena; children, Nancy Riekse ’71 (John ’71) Norden, Meredith Riekse, Judith Riekse Marcus, Laurel Riekse ’50 (Fred ’82) VanDyke, his eight grandchildren, Jim 97 ( Julie) Riekse, Jamie Riekse ’00 ( Sean) McWilliams, Andrew ’99 ( Shanna) Norden, Brad ’04 ( Heather) Norden, Kate Hoesch ’01 (Troy) DeWys, Tom Hoesch, Karl ’07 ( Tracey) Hoesch and Leah ( Matthew) Brooks, his 15 great- grandchildren, 3 step- grandchildren and a step- great- grandson, Stephen Van Dyke, Samantha Van Dyke, Lindsay Van Dyke, sister Lucille Riekse ’50 (Howard ’51) Claus and several nieces and nephews.
Anita Vogt ’41 Willis of Holland, Mich., died on Monday, April 28, 2014 at the home of her daughter, Pam (Annie) Olson of Holland. She was 95. Anita was born in Chicago to Delia and George Vogt. She grew up in East Saugatuck with her parents who owned and ran the Vogt Chicken Hatchery.
In her junior year she met Rene Willis and the following year they were married. They then resided in Detroit for the duration of World War II where their daughter, Pam was born. In 1946, they returned to Holland and lived here the rest of their lives. Anita was a Campfire Girls leader for many years. She was an avid gardener and dog lover. Rene and Anita hiked and camped throughout their lives.
Anita was preceded in death by her husband, Rene Willis ’41 in 2011. She is survived by her daughter, Pamela (Annie) Olson; son-in-law, Phil Olson; grandchildren, Benjamin (Leslie) Thomas, Tracy (Taylor) Aalvik, Kathryn (Kirk) Koeman; great-grandchildren, Scott and Randall Thomas, Stephen Hughes, Allyson Olds (nee Hughes); niece, Faye Corbitt; great-nephew, John; and great-niece, Cathy Corbitt.
Dayton Smith Jr. ’42 of Coxsackie, N.Y., died on Tuesday, March 11, 2014. He was 92.
He is survived by four children, Gary (Carol) Smith, Roger (Susan) Smith, Allison (Tom McManus) Smith, and Gregg Smith; four grandchildren, Deanna (Sean) Baldridge, Richard Smith, Brendon Smith, and Ashley Smith; three great-grandchildren, Jackson Graeve, Addison Baldridge and Kobe Baldridge; five nieces and nephews, Susan Andonucci, David Seavers, Barbara Ross, Charles Ross, and Sarah Fetterman, and two sisters-in-law, Helen Ross and Elsie Seavers. He was predeceased in May of 2011 by his wife of 62 1/2 years, Edna May Seavers Smith. He was also predeceased by his two half- sisters, Ellen Whitbeck and Frances Adams.
He graduated from Coxsackie High School and attended Hope College in Holland, Michigan. He was a World War II veteran, having served in the U.S. Army Air Corps in the Central Pacific on the islands of Hawaii, Saipan, and Ie Shima.
He began his work career at GE in Coxsackie where he met his future wife, followed by GE Schenectady. He then worked as an accountant at The Examiner-Recorder in Catskill, Greene County Memorial Hospital in Catskill, and Henzel Power in Albany. He was also an accomplished musician, having played drums in various bands. He was an avid New York Mets fan from their inception and enjoyed listening and playing along with big-band music. In recent years, he was a frequent visitor to Heermance Memorial Library and enjoyed the time he spent there. He was a member of the Second Reformed Church in Coxsackie, where he has served on Consistory. He served on the Village of Coxsackie Zoning board of appeals. But first and foremost, he was our dad, grandpa, and GG and will be missed ever so much.
Ruth Probst ’47 Vines of West Nyack, N.Y., died on Monday, April 15, 2013. She was 88.
She was also preceded in death by her six brothers and her sister. Surviving are her children, Judy McClure, Nona (Joe) Bushman, Jean (Mark) Oosterheert, and Jack Voss; grandchildren, Paul (Amber) Oosterheert, Andrew (Ryan) Oosterheert ’02, Joseph (Lea) Oosterheert ’04, Carla (Joe) McClenathan, Erin (Brad) Reed, Adam Voss, and Jared Voss; great-grandchildren, Lydia, Ava, Isaac, Lilah, Joshua, Josephine, Bryson, Rylee, and Anna; sisters-in-law, Verta Overbeek, Joyce Overbeek, and Betty Overbeek; and many nieces and nephews.
Renze was born in Grandville, Michigan, on September 13, 1919. A World War II veteran, he joined the United States Army on February 27, 1941. He served in the Pacific theater as an intelligence officer attached to the headquarters of General Douglas MacArthur.
He met his Australian wife of 65 years, Marjorie Coombes, in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia, where she was employed as support staff for the US Fifth Air Force Command. They married on March 21, 1945. After the war, he earned a BA in history from Hope College in Holland, Michigan, and a PhD in political science from Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Renze spent 20 years as a Foreign Service officer with the US State Department on assignments in Washington DC, the Philippines, Pakistan, Iran, Thailand, Laos and Vietnam. For his service, Renze received honors including the Bronze Star, the Legion of Merit, the National Medal of Merit and awards from the governments of the Philippines and South Vietnam.
After his State Department service, Renze joined the Hope College faculty in 1971 as a Professor of Political Science. He taught courses about the US national government, international law, and the politics of Southeast Asia, the Middle East, the Far East and the Soviet Union, as well as courses about the Holocaust and about race and ethnic relations in the US. While at Hope, he enjoyed each opportunity to direct the Washington (DC) Honors Semester, Washington May Term and the Model United Nations.
He was a consultant for the 1979 peace talks between Egyptian President Anwar Sadat, Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin and President Jimmy Carter. In 1998, the Hope College Alumni Association honored Renze with a Distinguished Alumni Award. Education was Renze's passion. After his retirement from Hope College in 1986, he helped to found the Hope Academy of Senior Professionals (HASP) in 1988 and was an active HASP instructor. In this capacity, he taught at Hope College, Calvin College, Davenport College, Aquinas College and Grand Valley State University.
He was also active in the Holland Rotary Club, serving in a number of positions, including its Presidency, and for several years with the Rotary International Youth Exchange program.
Renze was preceded in death by his wife, Marjorie (nee Coombes) Hoeksema, his father and mother, Clarence and Lily (nee DeWindt) Hoeksema, his brothers Frederick and James Hoeksema and his sisters Gertrude Van Polen and Gladys Timmer. Renze is survived by his three children, Richard Nolen-Hoeksema ’77 of Bethany, Connecticut, and Houston, Texas; Renze (Kristin) Hoeksema Jr. ’79 of Canton, Michigan; and Margot Hoeksema ’79 (Barry) Wynveen, of Chatham-Kent, Ontario, Canada; his six grandchildren, Bryan, Katie, Leigh, Leslie, Michael and Renée ’12; and his sister-in-law, Emma Hoeksema of Jenison, Michigan. Renze will be missed. He lived a full and amazing life. He would regale his family and students with stories about his adventures. He had a great passion for teaching and learning.
Betty was born May 26, 1927, to Rein and Gene (Buurma) Visscher in Holland. On August 22, 1947, Betty married Ted Rycenga ’51, who preceded her in death on April 29, 2009.Surviving Betty are her loving daughter, Laura Rycenga ’71 (Rich) Draeger of Spring Lake; and son, Ted (Carole) Rycenga ’72 of Cadillac.Cherishing wonderful memories of Betty are her six grandchildren, Melissa (Jim) Webb, Gretchen (Matthew) Guernsey, Joshua R. Eling, Meghan (Ryan) Howell, Lindsey (Peter) Donovan, and including Matthew (Anne Baker ’05) Rycenga ’06; and nine great-grandchildren, Jackson and Savanna Webb, Madeleine and Grayson Guernsey, Charles and William Howell, Brohm and Eloise Donovan, and Orion Rycenga. Also surviving Betty are her beloved niece, Lisa Vanderhill (Ringelberg); and John Logan, her loving companion these past four years.
A graduate from Hope College and Michigan State University, Betty began a 30+ year career as an educator with the Spring Lake Schools in 1951. After many years as a highly regarded classroom teacher at the Holmes Elementary School, Betty went on to serve the students of Spring Lake Schools as an elementary school counselor. Betty and her husband, Ted, who served as Superintendent of the Spring Lake Schools from 1972 to 1984, were strong advocates for the establishment and growth of the Laker Foundation, now known as the Spring Lake Schools Foundation.
Following her retirement from Spring Lake Schools, Betty, along with her husband, Ted, and daughter, Laurie, owned and managed the Dansk Kro restaurant on the Grand Haven waterfront for many years.In addition to being a loving grandmother and great-grandmother, Betty had a multitude of hobbies and interests that occupied her time fully. She was a passionate reader and writer, and a loyal viewer of the game show Jeopardy. Her wonderful sense of humor and a beautiful smile will long be remembered. An active member of the Spring Lake Presbyterian Church, Betty was comforted throughout her life by her Christian faith and the knowledge that she walked with the Lord.
Jean was born in Holland to Henry and Marie Wiersma on March 22, 1927. She graduated from Hope College in 1949, and in that same year married her elementary-school classmate and high school boyfriend, Jay Weener. While Jay attended seminary, Jean began her teaching at Waukazoo Elementary School, and for the next 40 years she faithfully served alongside her husband in pastoral ministry, first at Beaver Dam Reformed Church, then Third Reformed Church in Grand Rapids, Parkview Reformed Church in Santa Ana, CA, Second Reformed Church in Kalamazoo, and Fifth Reformed Church in Grand Rapids.
During their 17 years in Kalamazoo, Jean taught in the Kalamazoo Public Schools. In 1989, Jay was called to teach at Western Theological Seminary, and in moving back to Holland they became members of Christ Memorial Church where they both sang in the choir. Following Jay's sudden death in 1995, Jean continued to focus on the church and her family. She is remembered for her gracious hospitality, love of family, devotion to the church, and thankfulness in all circumstances.
Jean was preceded in death by her son, Donald Jay Weener in 1979; and her husband of 45 years, Rev. Jay R. Weener ’49 in 1995.She is survived by her children, Susan Weener ’81 (Stephen ’79) VanDop of Columbus, OH, Mary Weener ’79 (David ’82) Wierenga of Holland, and James and Debbie Wayner of Holland; grandchildren, Angela Carter of Ann Arbor, Abigail Wierenga ’04 of Holland, Joshua and Erica VanDop ’05 of Columbus, OH, Jennifer Wierenga ’06 of Holland, Kimberly Quimby of Grand Rapids, Kevon and Rebekah ’10 Gray of Columbus, OH, Emily Brouwers of Grand Rapids, Paul VanDop of Casablanca, Morrocco; great-grandchildren, Caleb VanDop, Aaron VanDop, Taylor VanDop and Emmett Gray; brothers and sisters, Glenn and Alice Wiersma of Holland, Roger Wiersma of Great Plains, NY, Dale and Betty Wiersma of Springfield, MO, Ida and Bob Kamphuis of Zeeland, Marcia Weener of Holland, and June Weener of Holland
Born in Albany, New York, February 28, 1929, to Charles and Ida Rivenburgh, she grew up in Columbia County until moving to Michigan to attend Hope College. She graduated in 1950 with a Bachelor of Arts degree and a teaching certificate. She married Hope graduate James Cook of Grand Rapids that same year.After teaching school for a short time in Holland, Jean moved to Blawenburg, New Jersey, where she and Jim served a Reformed church while Jim pursued further education at Princeton Seminary.
In that small town church Jean often played piano and organ, assisted with youth groups, and occasionally taught Sunday school in addition to raising their four children.In 1963, Jim was called to teach at Western Seminary so the family moved back to Holland. In addition to child rearing, Jean substitute taught and was involved in many church, college, and seminary service groups. On a national level she was active in Reformed Church Women and chaired its 1980 Triennial in Miami Beach, Florida.
When Jim was elected President of the RCA's General Synod in the 1980's, she toured the mission sites of the Middle East and Asia with him.Jean was a wonderfully compassionate woman who believed in personal interaction and handwritten notes. She knew the names of the bank cashiers, her post woman, and the store clerks where she shopped. She was once invited to the wedding of a waitress at a favorite restaurant. She loved to engage people and hear their stories and she always remembered them.
She was a member of Hope Church for more than 50 years, and in 1985, was the first woman to serve as vice-president of consistory. In recent years, besides brisk walks with her dog and taking care of her home and garden, she volunteered as a mentor with Kids Hope. Jean was also serving a current term on the Hope Church consistory as an elder.
She was preceded in death by her son, Paul Brian Cook in 1982; and husband James Cook ’48 in 2007.Surviving are her children, Mark (Janet Ross ’76) Cook ’73 of Holland, Carol Cook ’76 (Lynn Allen Roberson), of Louisville, KY, and Timothy and Linda Cook of Holland; grandson, Brian Cook and René Hartig of Portland, OR; granddaughters, Ann Cutterbuck-Cook ’05 and Hanna Clutterbuck-Cook of Boston, MA, and Maggie Cook ’10 of Austin, TX; brothers-in-law, Roger and Arlene Cook of Wyoming and Robert Cook of Pineville, LA; many nieces and nephews; and her beloved golden retriever, Addie.
Carl graduated from Holland High School, and received a bachelor’s degree from Hope College, as well as a master’s degree from Western Michigan University. He was employed as a teacher in the Holland Public Schools for 30 years, teaching mainly eighth grade English classes.
Carl was a veteran of the U.S. Navy, serving in World War II. He enjoyed fishing and hunting, playing bridge, and dancing for many years.
Carl was preceded in death by his wife of 61 years, Arlene (Arkie) Wieten ’49 Van Raalte in 2009. He is survived by his children, Christine Van Raalte of Ada, Carl J. Van Raalte of Holland, and Jon and Samantha Van Raalte of Holland; four grandchildren, Lauren Smith, Lindsay Smith, Makenna Van Raalte and Ty Van Raalte.
She was born in Muskegon, MI on December 20, 1929 to William A. and Bernice (Brooke) Vanderwerp and married Clifford Dobben ’52 on June 25, 1955. Mrs. Dobben was a graduate of Muskegon High School and received her BA Degree in Education from Hope College.
She had been a teacher at Oakview Elementary for 34 years until retiring in 1987. JoAnn was a long time member of Unity Reformed Church, a member of the Alpha Delta Kapa Sorority, the M.E.A. Retired and Muskegon County Retired School Personnel groups. She will be greatly missed.
SURVIVORS Brother, George Vanderwerp of IN; sisters-in-law, Bette Vanderwerp of Muskegon, Barbara Terres of CA, Vivan (David) Camp of CA; many nieces and nephews; several cousins and many close friends. She was preceded in death by her husband, Clifford; parents; brother, William L. Vanderwerp; nephew, Steven Camp; great nephew, William Vanderwerp; brother-in-law, Andrew Terres.
John was a leap year baby born on February 29, 1928. He was born in Holland to John Sr. and Jeanette (Knoll) Bremer. John graduated from Holland High School and served in the U.S. Navy as a radioman following World War II.
He attended Hope College and graduated from Michigan Tech with a B.S. in Electrical Engineering. He was a member of two honor societies, Eta Kappa Nu and Tau Beta Phi. He married JoAnn De Graaf in 1958. John did post graduate study at the University of Pittsburgh.
John’s professional expertise led to working on cruise missile design for the defense industry. John, JoAnn and their family subsequently lived in Maryland, St. Louis, Florida and San Diego, where John eventually retired from General Dynamics. John and JoAnn returned to West Michigan to retire and lived in Zeeland. They were members of Third Reformed Church of Holland. John enjoyed being a Ham radio operator. John’s call sign was W8DTB and enjoyed his friends in the Ham radio community from around the world until health prevented him from continuing.
He is survived by his wife of 56 years, JoAnn; children, J. Dirk Bremer of St. Paul, MO, Brenda and Rich Klein of Festus, MO, Eric and Kim Bremer of Tomball, TX, Annie and Eric Friedrich of Jackson, MO; grandchildren, Katie, Brandon, Erica, Megan, Jordan, Logan, Jacob; great-granddaughters, Aisley and Aubrey; brother, William and Linda Bremer; in-laws, John and Arloa De Graaf, Doris Krapp, Marian Darby, Mike and Lois De Graaf, Evelyn and Wallace Versluis, Fred and Pam De Graaf, Paul and Therse De Graaf; and many nieces and nephews. The Bremers are forever grateful to Appledorn Assisted Living Center for the loving care bestowed upon John as his health was failing.
Rodger was born January 30, 1930 to Lester and Helene (Peterson) Kramer in Holland, MI. He married Ruth Vander Velde on September 18, 1953 in Zeeland, MI. She passed away on July 19, 2012.Rodger served his country in the U.S. Air Force during Korea and was a member of the Air Force Band.
He began his college studies at Hope College in Holland, but received his Bachelors of Music Degree from Eastman School of Music, in Rochester, NY, and went on to earn his Master's Degree at Michigan State University.He was an instrumental music teacher for the Birmingham Public School System in the Detroit area for 27 years, during which time he also played with a local dance band, The Executives, and wrote many of the musical arrangements for the band.
After retiring in 1985, he continued to work part time as a limousine driver, a floral delivery driver, and a bank courier.He was a member of Christ Community Church, in Spring Lake, The American Legion, and continued to play his trombone with the Port City Winds in Muskegon. He loved his vegetable garden, but most of all, enjoyed family gatherings and attending his grandchildren's activities.
Rodger is survived by his loving family, daughter, Kim (Bob) Boston of Grand Haven, whose children are Cpt. Daniel (Stacey) Kosters, Kristin (Ron) DeIulius, and Evan Kosters; daughter, Lori (Dave) Estes of Grand Haven, whose children are Scott (Deb) Hill, David (Adriane) Hill, John Hill, and Lisa Lee; six great-grandchildren; sister, Beth (Bud) Kamphuis of Holland; brother, Eldon "Rox" (Jan) Kramer of Boerne, TX; and several brothers and sisters in-law. Rodger was preceded in death by his beloved wife, Ruthie, an infant brother, and two sisters, Dottie and Shirley.
Norm was born and educated in Union City, NJ. He served in the U.S.Army Air Corps during World War II, where he was an air traffic controller in India and China. After graduating from Hope College in 1953, with a degree in biology, he earned his graduate degrees in anatomy from the University of Michigan Medical School. Before returning to Hope College, he taught anatomy at both Temple University and the University of Michigan Medical Schools.
At Hope College, Norm taught a variety of courses in the biology department and was the advisor for students going into the Health Professions. Norm is survived by his wife, Ellen Lidstron ’51 Rieck, of 60 years; son, Dr. Richard and Dr. Susan Rieck; and three grandchildren, Richard, Elizabeth and William.
She was preceded in death by her parents, John and Henrietta VanWingeren; her brothers, Gary and John ’65 VanWingeren; and her brother-in-law, James Retsema. Joan will be lovingly remembered by her husband of 54 years, Robert Retsema, her daughters, Deborah (Owen) Laughlin, Janet (Brad) Spiegel, Laura (Matthew) Woolford; her 8 grandchildren; her sister, Sharon VanWingeren ’63 (Arlin) Meyer; her brother-in-law and sisters-in-law, Arthur Retsema, Karen Grabinski ’69 VanWingeren, Arija Retsema.
Joan and Bob shared a wonderful life together. They raised their family in Grandville as longtime members of Zion Reformed Church where Joan taught Bible study classes for various age groups. She worked hard throughout her life as a mother and a teacher, and in her college years, as a bookkeeper and health care aid.
Joan was the first in her family to go to college, graduating with a Bachelor's Degree from Hope College. Throughout her life she enjoyed crafts, reading, genealogy and extensive travel in the US, Europe and Africa. Joan had a strong faith, love for her husband, her family and had a special place in her heart for her grandchildren.
His long battle with cancer has ended, may he rest with God. Bob was born in Holland on December 9, 1930, to Jurry J. Van Ark and Velma R. (Ogden) Van Oort. After graduating from Holland High School, he enlisted in the U.S. Army in June, 1948.
He was assigned to the signal corps and trained as a cameraman in Monmouth, NJ. During the Korean War, he was posted at Army General Headquarters in Tokyo, Japan, where he was the only motion picture cameraman for the army. Many of the movies he made while in service were later used in the “Big Picture” television program in the ‘50s and ‘60s. During his service, he was awarded the Bronze Star.
After his discharge in 1952, Bob attended Hope College, graduating in 1956. He took a semester of honors studies at the American University in Washington, D.C. He attended Wayne State University on an Upson Fellowship, earning his MBA.
He was a member of the Jefferson City Host Lion’s Club serving in many offices. He was a member of Grace Episcopal Church. He served on the Board of Directors for the Jefferson City Salvation Army. He helped reactivate the Boy Scout Troop 10 at the church, and co-founded the Commissioners College for the Scout District. He was a member of the Board of Directors for the Heart of Missouri Girl Scout Council. He also worked with the JayCees, MIPA, Meals on Wheels, and Historic City of Jefferson.
Bob’s favorite pastimes were fishing, camping, reading, puzzles and spending time with family. Bob is survived by his wife, Barbara; and four children, Ruth Stegner (Jeff ), Robert Van Ark, Jurry Van Ark (Nera), and Dorothy Van Ark (partner, Jennifer Hogan); seven grandchildren, Jessica and Rebecca Stegner, Curtis and Anyssa Surprenant, Vanessa, Madalyn and Brook Van Ark; sister- in- law, Esther Van Ark; numerous nieces and nephews. Bob is preceded in death by his parents; stepfather, Earl Van Oort; brother, William J. Van Ark; sister, Dorothy Matchinsky; and former brother-in-law, John Matchinsky.
Rosemarie Kish ’58 Evenhuis of Novi Mich., died on Tuesday, May 6, 2014. She was 77. Beloved wife of James Evenhuis ’58. Loving mother of David ’95 (Nicole). Dearest grandmother of Henry and Lucy Rose. Dear sister of Margaret Kish ’67 Palmer Steinmetz.
Rosemarie's first employment was a director of the Detroit Society for Crippled Children (Easter Seals). Next, she assumed the post of Vice-President of the Rehabilitation Institute of michigan in Detroit Medical Center for over twenty years. Her last position, before retirement, was with the Executive Placement Firm of Right Management, Inc.
John was born November 15, 1935, in Holland, to John William Van Dyke Sr. and Katherine ( Vanden Bosch) Van Dyke. He married Patricia Brown on August 29, 1959, at Hope Church in Holland.
She survives along with a daughter, Kathryn Shanholt of Bristol; sons, Matthew ( Lisa) Van Dyke of Elkhart, Peter ( Heliene) Van Dyke of Munster, Indiana, Stephen Lang of Goshen; a sister, Donna Van Dyke LePoire of Holland; grandchildren, Justin ( McKenna) Van Dyke, Hillary Van Dyke, Justine Van Dyke, Jessica Van Dyke, Antoine Van Dyke, Marijke Van Dyke; and great-grandchildren, Lana, Chloe and Caleb Van Dyke.
John was a PhD Research Scientist at Miles Laboratories. He was a member of First Presbyterian Church in Elkhart where he served as Elder and Deacon. He worked on Mayor Hayes housing committee, volunteered at Church Community Services and was District Commissioner for the Boy Scouts. He enjoyed gardening and was a member of the Midwest Dahlia Club, and of the Midwest fruit jar and bottle society. John was also a charter member of the marble society, president of the PTA and Quester state president.
He was born to the late Harold and Ellen LeTarte, Aug. 22, 1938 in Muskegon, Mich. He graduated from Muskegon High School, attended Muskegon Community College, received his Bachelors from Hope College, and his Masters and Doctorate from Michigan State University. Clyde was a junior high school teacher; Dean of Graduate School at Eastern Michigan University; Vice President of Academics at Triton College, River Forest, Ill.; President of Jackson Community College, Jackson, Mich.; Founder of the National Community Education Association; Mott Fellow; Chairman of United Way Jackson Michigan; past national president of Continuous Quality Improvement Networks; served on the board of Starr Commonwealth; Director of Adult Education for Department of Michigan Department of Education; Director of Community Education Muskegon Michigan; Co-Author of Community Education: from Program to Process, Reforming Public Schools through Community Education.
Clyde was an active member of Wesley Methodist Church at Frederica, St. Simons Island, Ga., and Ferry Memorial Church of Whitehall, Mich. He was an avid golfer, woodworker, reader, and loved spending time with his family and friends. He played golf with the Hampton Golf Club "Pete's Group", and the "Old Guys" in Whitehall, Mich. He faithfully attended his Monday night bible study. He was a Brunswick Schools Mentor and president elect of the Coastal Youth Symphony.
Clyde is survived by his wife of 48 years Kathy LeTarte; two children, Rick LeTarte and Rhonda Fiero, of Jackson, Mich. He also is survived by his sister Carol and Don Herrgord, Charlene & Dave Neblett; six grandchildren Karissa, Jordan, Madison, Jacob, Caleb & Kyle, and his loving dogs Oscar & Hope. He was a man of quiet faith who was loved and admired by all who knew him.
He was born June 14, 1939 in Chicago to the late John A. and Minnie Iwema. On June 10, 1961 in South Holland, Illinois, Rodney married the love of his life, Diane Ippel.
Survived by his loving, caring wife of 52 years, Diane; “Pops” to children, Kent (Sherri) Iwema, Cheryl (Eric) Dorobek and Darrell Iwema; brother, Larry (Kathy) Iwema; sister-in-law, Sharon (Randy) Boonstra; “Umpa” to grandchildren, Kaleen, Connor and Cole Iwema, Jessica and Joshua Dorobek; and one niece and three nephews.
Rod graduated from Hope College in Holland, Michigan in 1962, received his Master’s Degree from University of Illinois; was a teacher and administrator in Harvey and Dolton, Illinois and Superintendent of Gurnee School District 56 from 1974-1982. He was a State Farm Insurance Agent until his retirement in 2001.
He was active in Boy Scouts earning the rank of Eagle. His life was filled with many activities and hobbies. He loved to travel, bike ride, hike, scuba dive, camp, geocache; enjoyed creating stained glass art, jewelry from tumbled rocks, woodworking, photography and collecting. He was his children and grandchildren’s number one fan to all their events. He and Diane traveled extensively visiting all of the 50 states, trips to Europe and 223 lighthouses.
Born in Pittsburgh, he was the son of the late David M. and Edna (Youndt) Musser. David earned his bachelor's degree from Hope College in Holland, MI and master's degree from Michigan State University. He was a published author and poet in the Emmaus area. He had a deep interest in astronomy.
James Hawkins ’64 of San Francisco, Calif., died on Wednesday, April 2, 2014. He was 72.
He came to San Francisco for four years of training in psychiatry at the California Pacific Medical Center and the University of California, San Francisco. He practiced geriatric and medical psychiatry for years at Highland General Hospital in Oakland, Laguna Honda Hospital in San Francisco and at the CA Palo Alto Health Care System. He retired from the practice of medicine in 2008. Dr. Hawkins had a long standing wish to be remembered as a physician, a teacher and a humanitarian. He is survived by his domestic partner and spouse of many years, Mr. Chikara Abe
'Bud' as he was called by family and friends was born July 2, 1942 in Hudson, NY, son of the Reverend Doctor Harvey B. Hoffman and Iola Butler Hoffman. The family moved to Hackensack, NJ where Bud spent his youth. He was a graduate of Mount Hermon School for Boys, Class of 1960 (now Northfield Mount Herman School) located in Gill, MA. He attended and graduated from Hope College in Holland, MI in 1984 with a degree in Business Administration.
He went on to graduate from Stonier Graduate School of Banking in 1972. Bud spent 20 years in the banking industry working in New York and Illinois. Retiring as Executive Vice President from Lincoln First Bank in Rochester, NY in 1984, Bud moved to Florida and formed a consulting business, HAMDI, which he operated until his death.
Bud will be greatly missed by his wife of 49 years, Sharon 'Sherry' Burrill ’64; two sons and their wives, Brad (Carleen) and David (Cheryl) Hoffman ’93; grandson, Chris; sister, Karen Hanson; brother-in-law, Jon and several nieces and nephews. Over the years, Bud served on many banking committees, community boards, country club committees and church boards. He was an outstanding tennis player and an avid fisherman winning many awards over the years in both sports. Bud was a member of First Presbyterian Church of Naples.
He was born April 18, 1943 in Philadelphia, son of Margaret Adams Barrows and Frederick Linde Barrows. Bob attended Hope College in Holland, Michigan on a music scholarship, and then served in the United States Army during the Vietnam era. He went on to receive a Master of Fine Arts in Sacred Music from Union Theological Seminary and Yale University's Institute of Sacred Music, and, at the same time, served as assistant organist at St. James' Church in Manhattan.
During the 1970s, Bob taught music at the Hotchkiss School, in Lakeville, Connecticut, and then was a marketing executive at New York Times Books, where he oversaw production of several fine art and scholarly reprints. In 1981 he was appointed organist and choirmaster at St. Michael's Church (Episcopal) in Manhattan.
In 1984, he became organist and choirmaster at the Free Synagogue of Flushing, a post he held until his death. From 1999 until his retirement in 2013, he was organist and choirmaster at Grace Episcopal Church in Nyack, and had taught music for several years at Dominican College in Orangeburg, New York.
He is survived by his wife Susan Hellauer, his three children Elizabeth Barrows, James Barrows and Rachel Collier, grandchildren Roman and Eva, his brother Roy Barrows (Margaret Barrows), nephews Kevin Chapko and Scott Barrows, aunt Jean Parker, cousins Deborah and Barbara Parker, and legions of friends and colleagues whose lives he touched through music and kindness.
The eldest child of Leonard "Van" Van Hoven and Mary (Schaap) Van Hoven, Jay was born in Holland, Mich., on Aug. 11, 1945. Jay graduated from high school in Harbor Springs after a childhood in Holland, Montrose and Burr Oak, Mich. He earned a degree in history from Hope College and a master of education from Northern Michigan University. He was a member of the Peace Corps, worked in community education in Iowa and Michigan, and was two-time Mott Fellow in education leadership.
In 1973, he met and married Nancy Voight in East Lansing. They later welcomed their son, Joshua, in Chapel Hill, N.C., followed by daughters, Janna and Lydia, in Indianapolis, Ind. Jay was superintendent of schools in Melvindale, DeTour Village, Mendon and Erie, Mich. He later lived in Greenwood, S.C. When Nancy retired, they moved to their beloved beach house in Flagler Beach, Fla. Jay was active in groups protecting sea turtles and right whales, the ALCU, Southern Christian Poverty Law Center, and campaigned for Barack Obama.
Jay was preceded in death by his father, mother, two brothers-in-law, and his best friend. He is survived by his wife, Nancy Van Hoven; children, Josh Van Hoven (Carla Van Hoven), Janna Diorio (Charles Diorio), and Lydia Stoye (Grant Stoye); grandchild, Rory Stoye; sisters, Jill Washburn, Jane Butsic and Jana Underwood; brothers-in-law, Sam Washburn and Bill Butsic; sister-in-law, Judie Voight, and many adored nieces and nephews. He will also be missed by his dedicated dog, Little Red.
RJ was born Aug. 14, 1962, in Royal Oak, Mich. He is the son of Alice (Gargano) Davis, and Roger Clinton Davis and stepmother Deborah Davis. After attending Southfield Elementary School and Graduating from Sturgis High School in 1981, he played Varsity Baseball for Hope College.
In 1985, after finishing his Bachelors of Science Degree, he went on to receive a Master of Science Degree in Environmental Science/Hydrogeology in 1987. Having his work published was a fulfilling accomplishment. RJ was highly regarded in his field as a geologist. After graduation, he found himself at Kearney Inc. in Washington, D.C. Following this, he would move back to the Midwest where he would work for Delta Environmental Consultants, Summit Envirosolutions. Using his vast experience, he started his own business in 1998; Environmental Focus Inc.
Roger would travel many Thursdays to Owatonna for Federated Insurance; one of his main clients. These long road trips gave him the opportunity to listen to several hundred books on tape, which he proudly listed in a journal. He truly loved his work and was so blessed to meet many wonderful people who became his good friends for life. On Dec. 14, 1991,
RJ was married to his "True Companion" Laura. A singing proposal on a park bench just 3 months prior was a perfect start to a "Wonderful Life " together. In 1994, the marriage was blessed with a fabulous son Ty, who was the joy of his father's life. Ty is now attending his freshmen year at Valparaiso University in Indiana. RJ felt it was important to serve his community of North Hudson. He did that as a Village Trustee and Committee member of the N.H. Public Works and Public Welfare, Historic Preservation and the Ad-Hoc Building Committee. RJ was also involved in other organizations; North Hudson parent group, Relay for Life, Habitat for Humanity, Phipps Center for the Arts, Pepper Fest, Friends of the Library, and his church Shepherd of the Valley.
The last two years, he was given the opportunity to be an Adjunct Professor at UWRF. He was honored to teach and train these college students. It was a joyful opportunity. His DI "Destination Imagination" family was a big part of RJ's life. Coaching kids to believe in themselves build teamwork and enjoy their successes and grow as young adults. Creating, exploring, learning, performing believing in themselves, he was blessed over and over. Thank you DI family for your out pouring love and many fundraisers. This fun was always enjoyed with some kind of duct tape.
RJ was a collector of many things. A large collection of childhood toys, baseball cards, coins, Pez to name a few. His most prized collection was his trains. After receiving his mom's train, he somehow acquired many more. A hobby that would lead to a winning display featured in The Train magazine. He was all about creating special moments and memories. Family vacations were apart of that and included trips to Hawaii, Disney, Disney Cruise, D.C. Maine, California, Texas, Arizona, Key West, Michigan, and Colorado to name a few. Trips that we look back with great fondness. RJ was a sports enthusiast both playing and watching. Watching a good Redwing hockey game or the Twins playing the Tigers were all great times.
RJ will remain in the hearts of his wife Laura: son, Ty; mother Alice (Gargano) Davis; father, Roger Clinton Davis; stepmother Deborah Davis; sister Emily (John) Garies; Laura's family, Kenneth and Beverly Coshun, Pam Coshun, and Marsha (Rory) Kircher; aunts; uncles; nieces; nephews and cousins. And a four legged companion, miniature schnauzer "Gabby" who brought great joy and love to him. He was preceded in death by his grandparents; and aunt. The family would like to thank the Adoray Hospice Nursing staff for there care and support. He owned Environmental Focus Inc., and was an adjunct professor at University of Wisconsin-River Falls.
Muriel was born in Emerald Wisconsin on August 23, 1927. She grew up in the Baldwin and Woodville area and later moved to Holland MI. Muriel was employed by H J Heinz, Swift Ice Cream, A D Bos Vending, and retired from the housekeeping department of Hope College (1979-1990).
She was a member of Intersection Ministries in Holland where she had been a Sunday School and Catechism teacher and was involved in the women’s Bible Study and Monday morning prayer group. After retirement she volunteered many hours in classrooms at Pine Creek Elementary School and also was a Kids Hope tutor. When she could no longer go to the school, she tutored after school in her home. Muriel loved to bake and up to these last weeks she still supplied banana bread and cookies for the Intersection Ministries after school program.
Muriel was preceded in death by her husband Donald in 1996, her parents Nicholas and Tannie Meyer, her parents in law Joseph and Henrietta Achterhof, brother, Raymond Meyer, brothers and sisters in law, George Wevers, James Kennedy, Ronald Wagenmaker, Joe Achterhof, Eugene and Bernice Achterhof, Dale and Arlene Moulton. Muriel is survived by her children Nancy and Robert Bailey, Dean and Wendy Achterhof, Sheryl Achterhof, Mary Baker, and Ron and April Achterhof; grandchildren, Jeff and Sandy Bailey, Jason and Jodie Bailey, Craig and Sara Baker, Nate and Kim Baker, Brian Baker, Amanda and Adam Eaton, Dan and Brie Achterhof; great grandchildren, Austin, Sidney, and Savannah Eaton, Evan and Aila Baker, Jada and Rilee Baker. She is also survived by sisters, Helen Wevers, Kathy Wagenmaker, Norma Kennedy and brothers, Lee Meyer and Michael and Karen Meyer, a sister in law, Lorraine Achterhof, and many nieces and nephews.
She worked in the Department of Education at Hope from 1993 to 2012. Brenda loved her family and enjoyed gardening. She was preceded in death by her mother, Carole Poel.
She is survived by her husband, Rick, of 39 years; and children, Jonathan Crisp of Holland, Thomas Crisp and partner, Matheus Almeida of Atlanta, GA, Ashleigh and Alex Hobart of Kalamazoo; father, Bruce Poel of Holland; brother, Brian and Julie Poel of Jenison; sister and brothers-in-law, Marcy and Tom Kauffman of Ionia, Jim Crisp of Lansing, Brian and Sue Crisp of St. Louis, MO; aunt, uncle, nieces, nephews and cousins.
She was a member of Central Avenue Christian Reformed Church. Joan was rich in friends and carried on a faithful card ministry. Joan enjoyed music and was a member of many choral groups — the Christian Choral Society of Chicago and the Apollo Music Club of Chicago, who performed at Orchestra Hall with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra; the Kent University Chorus, in which she once performed Verdi’s Requiem under conductor, Robert Shaw; and the Calvin College Radio Choir, Calvin Oratorio Society, Evergreen Chorale, Zeeland Civic Chorus, and Pillar and Central Avenue church choirs.
Joan was born to Theodore and Annette Boomker on April 15, 1935, in the Roseland area of Chicago, and graduated from Chicago Christian High School. She attended Calvin College, was employed by several insurance companies, and ran her own typing business for students at Kent State University where her husband was a professor. She was predeceased by her parents; infant son, John Robert III; and brother-in-law, James A. De Boer.
Joan is survived by Robert, her husband of 57 years; and children, Robert Jr. of Holland, Sarah Swierenga of Okemos, Celia and Mark Groenhout of Lambertville, Daniel of Wooster, OH, and Suzanna and Brent Breems of Grand Rapids. She took great delight in her grandchildren, Sydney Swierenga, Jacob (Kate), Trent, and Jillanne Groenhout, and Henry, Louis, and Katherine Breems. She was much loved by her sister, Celia Boomker De Boer; a brother, John Theodore (Ruth) Boomker; and in-laws, Raymond (Cynthia) Swierenga, Alyce (Dick) Houskamp, Donald (Mary) Swierenga, Grace (Gary) Nyland, and John (Virginia) Swierenga; many nephews and nieces.