At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.
Community Church of Douglas
6780 Wiley Road
Fennville, MI 49408
Life Story / Obituary
Gary S. Van Neck passed away peacefully at home in Saugatuck, MI on December 17, 2016 surrounded by his loving family at the age of 80. From humble beginnings as the son of a Belgian immigrant in Ontario, Gary was the first in his family to go to college. He married his high school sweetheart, Charlotte, in 1958. With her support, he graduated with high honors from Lawrence Institute of Technology in 1963 and was awarded the LIT Alumni Achievement Award in 1981. He enjoyed a successful career as an architect, primarily with Rossetti Associates, and later used his design and managerial skills in facilities management with First of America Bank as well as several entrepreneurial ventures. In retirement, he volunteered many years for the Lift Reading program at Douglas Elementary and served on the Clearbrook Green Condo Association as a Board Member and President. He was a true renaissance man with a variety of hobbies and interests. He was an avid golfer, skier, and tennis player, and enjoyed playing and watching ice hockey. He was skilled at using his hands as evidenced by early forays into sculpture, construction of a Bradley GT kit car, and woodcarving in his later years, creating Disney and Winnie the Pooh character keepsakes for his children and grandchildren. He enjoyed playing cards, jigsaw and crossword puzzles, as well as board games. He and Charlotte traveled extensively both alone and with their children. Later in life, he expanded his creative efforts by writing his memoirs for his children. This collection of memories and musings includes his poem, “Ode to Charlotte,” which was published in 2000 in Dewdrops at Dawn by the International Library of Poetry. Gary’s favorite activity was to spend time surrounded by his family to whom he leaves a loving legacy of hard work, integrity, and commitment to family.
He is survived by his beloved wife of 58 years, Charlotte (nee Dick), his children Cynthia (Tim) Porter, Todd (Kathy) Van Neck, and Rochelle (Joe) McCrone, his five grandchildren: Taylor McCrone, Alexa McCrone, Mitchell McCrone, Gillian Van Neck, and Lauren Van Neck. Also survived by his sister, Barbara (Duncan) O’Brien, Edsel Dick, Homer Dick, Phyllis (Bob) Bayly, and many nieces and nephews. He is preceded in death by his parents, Leon & Irene Van Neck and his brother, James Van Neck, of Blenheim, Ontario.
The family is grateful to Hospice of Holland and its caregivers for the excellent care it provided during the past several months.
In lieu of flowers, any memorial contributions in Gary’s name may be made to Hospice of Holland, 270 Hoover Blvd., Holland, MI 49423 or to Community Church of Douglas, 6780 Wiley Rd, Fennville, MI 49408.
A celebration of life will take place on Saturday February 4, 2017 at 11:00am at the Community Church of Douglas, 6780 Wiley Road, Fennville, MI 49408.
Arrangements are by the Dykstra Funeral Home-Saugatuck Chapel.