Serving West Michigan Since 1899

Paul Boerigter

August 24, 1927 - March 16, 2016
Holland, MI



Friday, March 18, 2016
5:00 PM to 8:00 PM EDT
Dykstra Funeral Homes
Mulder Chapel
188 West 32nd Street
Holland, MI 49423
(616) 392-2348
Driving Directions


Saturday, March 19, 2016
11:00 AM EDT
First Reformed Church
630 State Street
Holland, MI 49423
(616) 392-8085


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.

First Reformed Church Endowment Fund
630 State Street
Holland, MI 49423
(616) 392-8085

Life Story / Obituary


Paul’s parents, Edward, whose family immigrated from Uelsen Germany, and Julia (Boeve) were married in 1924 in Trinity Reformed Church. Jack was born in 1926 and Paul a year later just before the Great Depression began. They did not have more children until 12 years later because they simply could not afford them during the depression. David was born in 1936, George in 1939.

They used kerosene and oil lamps. The house was sparsely heated to save money and they used a coal-burning stove in the basement. Paul remembers they were very poor. He and his brother had only two pair of pants…one for church and school and one for work and play. Shoes were very expensive so they went barefoot as much as possible to save wear on their shoes. They used an icebox to keep food cold. The ice-man would deliver a 75-pound of ice twice a week. Milk was delivered every day by the milkman. They heated water in a bucket on top of the coal stove for bathing and laundry. They had a radio but it didn’t work very well. The television came along about 1950. Reception was poor on the three available stations. They did get to go to the movies occasionally , it cost about five or ten cents. Kids played games like marbles and jacks. They liked to play catch but couldn’t afford a mitt and most kids did not have a bicycle.

Paul was a veteran of World War II, serving in the United States Army Air Corp. He graduated from high school in 1945 and at age 17, enlisted in the Air Force because he wanted to be a flier. The U.S. didn’t need pilots so he went to Mississippi for training for about ten weeks. Around Christmas time he went to Europe on the SS George Washington cruise ship transporting 6000 troops. His brother Jack was shipped to Italy the same day. Paul went to Fuerstinfelbrook in Germany and ended up playing football for the US Air Force/Air Corp Team. He traveled all over Europe for about a year, privileged to play in many of Europe’s major cities. He was shipped out on a victory ship between Christmas and the New Year. He remembers there was a big storm and their ship was towed to London. Everybody on the ship was sick. Thirty-five of seven hundred made it to breakfast. He was one of the thirty-five but eventually became sick as well. It was a long, twenty-one day trip to New York. On January 1947, he was done in the Air Force.

He was accepted for the fall term at Pomona College in California. There were no jobs so he and his brother enrolled at Hope College and decided to stay. After his second year he left school to help his dad in the Hotpoint Appliance Store in downtown Holland on River Ave. Paul and Doris met in 1948 at Ottawa Beach on Paul’s birthday. They were married June 2, 1950 at the Holland Country Club. They moved to Grand Rapids and in July 1951 their first daughter was born. A month later they moved to Holland. They bought a lot for $440 and built their first home for $7500. There they raised four young children, Joan, MaryJo, Karen and Bill.

The Boerigter appliance store was sold and Paul went to work for Holland Furnace (Heating Acceptance). He worked in the credit collections and did not enjoy it. He had several promotions and eventually became National Collections Manager. When the business closed Paul secured at job in Customer Service at Herman Miller. He eventually became Traffic Manager then Production Control Manager. In 1970 he left to accept a position with Afco Industries. He retired in 1988 after serving many years as the executive Vice President and General Manager of Afco, a subsidiary of Temple-Inland Inc. During his leadership there, Afco became the largest producer of whiteboard in the world. Following retirement from Afco Industries, he became a consultant for Weyerhauser.

Paul and Doris were members of Bethany Christian Reformed Church for over twenty years before they transferred to First Reformed Church. They were long-time members where Paul served as an Elder, a member of the Endowment Committee and as Vice President of the Consistory. He was a delegate to the Holland Classis and to the General Synod of the Reformed Church of America, then subsequently served as a Vice President and President of the Holland Classis of the RCA.

A life-long resident of this community, he served on the Board of Directors of the Holland Chamber of Commerce, the Holland Country Club and Sound-Off Signal Inc. and on the Holland Appeals Board. Paul and Doris have supported the Holland Community Foundation for 20 years and recently established an endowment fund for the Community.

Paul enjoyed all sports but his passion was golf. Prior to his death, he was the longest standing continuous member of the Holland Country Club, joining when he was a sophomore in high school. He served as a member for sixty-one years until the Club closed several years ago. He was an accomplished golfer and was the Club’s Men’s Champion and Men’s Senior Champion several times. He was also the longest standing continuous member of the Wolverine Seniors, joining at age fifty-five.

Paul and Doris enjoyed traveling and were fortunate to have had many opportunities to do so, including a family vacation with children and grand-children to Europe. They owned a condo on Anna Marie Island and were blessed to spend twenty-five winters there with many wonderful friends. They were married for 64 wonderful years.

He is survived by his four children, Joan and John Dayton of Fayetteville, NC, MaryJo and Jack Voss of Holland, Karen and David Westrate of Holland and William and Maureen Rowe Boerigter of Stoughton WI; two brothers, David and Barbara Boerigter of Sequim WA and George and Sibilla Boerigter of Albuquerque NM. Sister-in-laws Mildred Vanderbeek of Zeeland, Delores Boerigter of Iowa and Carrie Lyzenga of Grandville; brother-in-law Harold Witteveen of Allendale. Twelve grand-children, Tonya (and Neil) Harrison of Reed City, Marcy (and Brian) Hammond of Chase, Jeffrey (and Amanda) Dayton of Raleigh NC, Nancy (and Brad) Bynum of Raleigh NC, James (and Courtney) Voss of Holland, Marcus (and Shelley) Voss of Hudsonville, Kimberly (and David) McManus of Fayetteville NC, Robert Voss of Holland, Matthew (and Tracie) Westrate of Bancroft, Daniel Voss of Holland, Benjamin Boerigter and Sarah Boerigter of Stoughton WI; fourteen great-grandchildren and several nieces and nephews.

Visiting hours are 5-8pm Friday, March 18, at the Dykstra Funeral Home-Mulder Chapel, 188 West 32nd St. in Holland. A funeral service is planned for Saturday, March 19, 11am at First Reformed Church, 630 State St. in Holland. Burial will be at Pilgrim Home Cemetery. Memorials may be made to the First Reformed Church Endowment Fund.