Recent Deaths (in memory of)


KUIECK - Mr. John E. Kuieck, aged 70, of Ft. Meyers, FL and formerly of Muskegon and Grand Rapids, passed away July 20, 2004 in Florida. Mr. Kuieck was a life long architect working on projects in Muskegon and Grand Rapids and a retiree of Tridon Construction Co. of Muskegon. Surviving are his brother and sister-in-law, Richard and Linda Kuieck of Mattawan, MI, a niece and nephews and life long friends, Chuck and Jinny Heeringa of DeWitt, MI. Funeral services will be held Friday at 11 a.m. at the Laketon Bethel Reformed Church, 1568 West Giles Rd., Muskegon with Rev. Sherwin Brantsen officiating. Interment will be in Rosedale Memorial Park. Mr. Kuieck reposes at the Van't Hof Life Story Funeral Home, 851 Leonard N.W., Grand Rapids where relatives and friends may meet his family Thursday from 6 to 9 p.m. He will also repose at the Laketon Bethel Reformed Church Friday from 10 a.m. until the time of the funeral service. For those who wish, memorial contributions to the Laketon Bethel Reformed Church Endowment Fund would be appreciated. Please visit to read John's life story, leave a memory or sign the online register book. Heritage Life Story Funeral Homes
Published in the Grand Rapids Press on 8/4/2004.
 LIFE STORY OF JOHN E. KUIECK: (as written through the funeral home access to the internet)
John E. Kuieck
March 8, 1934 - August 3, 2004
Grand Rapids, Michigan

Date of visitation: August 5, 2004
Time of visitation: 6:00 PM
Date of service: August 6, 2004
Time of service: 11:00 AM
Funeral home: Heritage Life Story Funeral Homes - Van't Hof Chapel


Mr. John E. Kuieck was an energetic, loyal and talented man. He worked hard, but always made time for others, serving in his church and encouraging those around him. His outgoing nature made it easy for him to make and keep friends. He was willing to take risks, to try new things and to learn. He had a soft spot for cats and always had one of his own.

Born on March 8, 1934, John entered a world that faced many challenges. He was just a young boy during the years of the Great Depression, but he was old enough to remember some of the traumatic events of the next decade, undoubtedly aware of the developments of World War II. The eldest of two boys born to Ernest and Margaret (Fox) Kuieck, he was raised in Grand Rapids and acquired a strong work ethic and sense of responsibility.

As a youngster, John liked to build model airplanes. He was interested in knowing how things worked and spent a lot of time examining the workings of his motor scooter. He and his brother, Richard, both had scooters and could often be seen cruising the westside on them. His interest in mechanics stayed with him throughout his life and blossomed from scooters to cars. He often had nice automobiles, including some convertibles, and at one time owned a Corvette.

The Kuieck family had deep roots on the west side of Grand Rapids. Ernest's family was quite large and gave John and his brother a strong sense of belonging and of community. John's family regularly attended Trinity Reformed Church in Grand Rapids and John received a religious foundation that remained with him for the rest of his life. John attended Harrison Elementary School and then went on to Union High School where he graduated with the class of 1952. John was an excellent student and devoted most of his time to his studies.

When John wasn't studying, he was working. During school, he worked at his uncle's drug store, Odie's Drugs. The soda fountain there provided a popular hang out for the young people of the neighborhood. John also worked for another uncle at a greenhouse on the Westside. During the summer months he did yard maintenance for a local family, which took up most of his time. He was ambitious and willing to work, character traits that continued to develop as he grew older.

While in school, John met Chuck Heeringa who was to remain a lifelong friend. Chuck and John shared many adventures together while camping and hiking. Later in life as their paths separated, they still corresponded frequently and met whenever they could.

After completing his schooling, John served his country as part of the Michigan National Guard. He attended Grand Rapids Junior College and then transferred to the University of Michigan. He was a member of the Alpha Rho Chi Fraternity and graduated as an architect. He remained a Wolverine at heart for the rest of his life, joining the University of Michigan Alumni, and he loved attending Rose Bowl games with friends and alums.

After graduating from U of M, John worked for a short time for a firm in Ypsilanti, then later moved to Grand Haven and worked for a firm there. His vision led him to start his own business, and he founded a company with a friend, John Melrose. Together they operated the Kuieck and Melrose Co. until the unfortunate death of Mr. Melrose. John then went to work for Tridon Construction of Muskegon where he stayed until his retirement in 1999. Never one to be idle by choice, he continued working part time for Dalton Township for five years. During the last months of his life, John took up residence in Ft. Meyer, Florida.

As an architect, John worked on several large projects in Grand Rapids and Muskegon. In the Muskegon area, he worked on The Christian Home for the Aged, the C.W.C project, several projects for Lorin Industries, the Ramada Inn in Whitehall, and the Comfort Inn in Muskegon.

John liked living in the Muskegon area, especially close to Lake Michigan. In the early 1970s, he purchased a piece of property on the sand dunes north of Muskegon. He designed his own home and built it on this property overlooking Lake Michigan, one of the great lakes. The area provided him with many opportunities to participate in some of his favorite pastimes. He liked to snowmobile in the winter and to hike around the state park near his home during the warmer months. He enjoyed camping and loved his home on the lake. After retirement, he took the opportunity to travel, visiting Alaska and the Panama Canal. He even crewed on a four masted schooner and sailed around the Caribbean.

John retained his commitment to church and to the Lord. After he moved to Muskegon, he joined the Laketon Bethel Reformed Church where he was an active member. He sang in the choir, served in the consistory and was a member of the Building Committee. He was willing to serve in any way he could, sharing his talents for the benefit of the congregation.

John is survived by his brother and sister-in-law, Richard and Linda Kuieck of Mattawan, Michigan; a niece and nephews; and life long friends, Chuck and Jinny Heeringa of DeWitt, Michigan.

John passed away on July 20, 2004, in Florida. He was seventy years old.

Friends will be received on Thursday, August 5, from 6 - 9 PM at the Van't Hof Life Story Funeral Home, 851 Leonard NW, Grand Rapids. There will also be a time of visitation immediately prior to funeral services at 10 AM on Friday, August 6, at the Laketon Bethel Reformed Church, 1568 West Giles Road, Muskegon. Services will be at the church at 11 AM, the Rev. Sherwin Brantsen officiating. Interment will be in Rosedale Memorial Park.  To read John's complete life story, share a memory, send flowers, or make a memorial contribution to the Laketon Bethel Reformed Church Endowment Fund, please visit his personal web page at

John loved life and made the most of the opportunities given to him. He leaves his family and friends with fond memories and a strong example. He will be missed.


Monday, Jun 14, 2004

Donna May Beemer
SPRINGDALE -- Donna May Beemer, 64, of Springdale died June 13, 2004, in Springdale. She was born May 29, 1940, in Grand Rapids, Mich., to Steve and Nellie Blok Kuieck. She was a member of First Baptist Church in Rogers and a member of the Extension Homemakers. She was an avid sports fan and enjoyed animals.

Survivors include one daughter, Dr. Cindy Beemer of Springdale; one son, Randy Beemer of Scott, La.; one sister, Rosemary DeRidder of Grand Rapids, Mich.; four grandchildren.

Memorial services will be at 3 p.m. Tuesday at Sisco Funeral Chapel in Springdale.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Razorback Foundation Inc., P.O. Box 3518, Fayetteville, 72702.