Arthur Veltman ’52

On May 6, 2023, Arthur Sidney Veltman passed into the presence of his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ to be reunited with his beloved wife of 66 years, Donna Mae Veltman. Art is survived by his children Warren (Julie) Veltman, Elizabeth Veltman, Brenda Veltman and the grandchildren and great-grandchildren: Emily (Om) Shankar (Isla), Austin Veltman, Gerrit (Kim) Veltman, Gina (Nathan) Schau (Eleonore, Joanna), Grant Veltman, Anna Veltman and Nathan Veltman. Art is preceded in death by his son, Howard B. Veltman, his parents, his brother, Howard G. Veltman and his sister, Norma Veltman.
Art was born on July 28, 1930, in Grand Rapids to Sidney and Swannie Veltman, and graduated from Creston High School in 1948. After attending Hope College and Michigan State University, he met Donna on a blind date to play bridge with some friends. That date resulted in a lifetime together when they were married on July 23, 1954. Art was drafted into the Army at that same time, and six weeks after their marriage, he was shipped to the Philippines for over a year as part of his military service.
Art was an entrepreneur and optimist at heart. He was owner, or part owner, of numerous West Michigan businesses over the years, starting with a Muzak franchise to provide music to several local hotels including the Pantlind Hotel. He spent the first half of his career in the furniture industry with manufacturers Ralph Morse Furniture Company and Fine Arts Furniture Company. Art then purchased an ownership interest in Center Manufacturing Inc., a metal stamping company servicing the automotive and electronics industries. He stayed involved in Center Manufacturing on a daily basis until his retirement at the age of 76, and he took great pride in the long-term business partnerships that he had over the years, and the friendships that were forged and extended beyond his retirement.
Art was an outdoorsman, and his passion was fishing. He caught the fever when salmon were introduced in the Great Lakes in the late 1960s and he believed that he was one of the first fisherman to catch a salmon from Lake Michigan. Over the years, he maintained a boat in Manistee, MI and he and Donna would spend their weekends fishing and socializing with family and friends at Seng’s Marina. The weekend catch would be brought back to Grand Rapids to be delivered to numerous friends that coveted the fresh fillets.
Art loved to have his family around him. He and Donna would host holiday and birthday gatherings and weekly Sunday night family dinners. During dinners, he loved to discuss sports, especially the Detroit Lions, business news and the political climate. Art was a founding member of Christ Church enjoying weekly services and serving in leadership roles. He also played the accordion, loved big band music, was an avid reader, and enjoyed analyzing and investing in stocks.
Arthur was a much loved and admired husband, father, grandfather, great grandfather, mentor, and loyal friend.

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