Donald Lenderink ’51

The Rev. Donald Lenderink, age 90, of Orange City, passed away on Sunday, July 26, 2020, at the Orange City Area Health System.

Donald Roger was born on November 14, 1929, in Grand Rapids, Michigan, the son of Arend K. and Wilhelmina “Minnie” (Byle) Lenderink. He was raised in Grand Rapids, where he graduated from Central High School in 1947 and attended Calvin College for two years. He completed his bachelor’s degree at Hope College in Holland, Michigan, where he met the love of his life, Ruth Leone Brinkman. Following his graduation from college in 1951, “Don” enrolled at Western Theological Seminary, also in Holland.

Don and Ruth were united in marriage on August 20, 1952, in Ruth’s hometown of Matlock, Iowa. The couple made their home in Holland while Don attended seminary, earning his Master of Divinity in May of 1954. In July of that same year, he was commissioned as a chaplain in the United States Navy. He served in that capacity for two years aboard Navy vessels. Following his honorable discharge, he continued to serve as a reserve chaplain at various Naval bases, ultimately retiring in 1989 as Lieutenant Commander.

In 1956, Don accepted his first call as pastor of the Second Reformed Church in Little Falls, New Jersey. In 1962, Don and Ruth’s growing family moved to Orange City, where they raised their four children and pastored at the Trinity Reformed Church. In 1986, after 24 years in Orange City, Don and Ruth moved to Ohio, where Don was pastor at the Brooklyn Reformed Church until his retirement in 1994. In 2002, the couple returned to Orange City to be near their children and grandchildren, eventually making their home at the Landsmeer Ridge Retirement Community. Ruth passed away on July 4, 2019, in Orange City after more than 66 years of marriage.

Don cherished the time he spent with his family and being able to participate in his children’s, grandchildren’s, and great-grandchildren’s activities. He liked to watch sports, solve puzzles, play games, read, listen to music, travel, and tell really bad jokes. He enjoyed numerous outdoor activities including golf, fishing, hiking, cross-country skiing, jogging, and swimming. He and Ruth could often be found taking walks or riding bike together and were always willing to spend time visiting with others.

Survivors include his three daughters, Lynne, and her husband, John Hubers, of Holland, Michigan, and their children, Jennifer, and her husband, Todd Lavery, and Adam Hubers; Judy Clausen, of Albert City, and her children, Nancy Brown, Kathy Parker, and Joel Clausen; and Mary Beth, and her husband, Jerry Reuvers, of Orange City, and their children, Amy, and her husband, Aaron Koob, and Jill, and her husband, Seth Vander Weide; a son, Brian Lenderink, and his wife, Dyan, of Sheldon, and their children, Brandon Lenderink, and his wife, Valerie, and Bethany Lenderink; twelve great-grandchildren; a brother-in-law, Ed Cooper; and numerous nephews and nieces.

In addition to his parents and his wife’s parents, Gerrit and Ruth (Kreulen) Brinkman; he was preceded in death by a son-in-law, David Clausen; a great-grandson, Jacob Koob; a sister and her first husband, Virginia Eldred Cooper and the Rev. Walter Eldred; and four brother’s-in-law, Lloyd Brinkman, and his wives Lorraine and Jeanette; Elmer Brinkman; Gerald Brinkman, and his wife, Jeannette; and Ronald Brinkman, and his wife Donna.

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