Cover photo for Donna Mae (Boes)  Vanderwell's Obituary
Donna Mae (Boes)  Vanderwell Profile Photo
1930 Donna 2022

Donna Mae (Boes) Vanderwell

February 4, 1930 — October 9, 2022

Kalamazoo

Donna Mae Vanderwell, age 92, of Kalamazoo, passed away on Sunday, October 9, 2022 in the home of her wonderful caretaker, Brandie DeHaan, and her husband Matt who is a grandchild. Donna was born in Muskegon, Michigan on February 4, 1930, the daughter of the late Albert Boes and Grace (Essenberg) Boes. She was a devoted member of Second Christian Reformed Church, where she played the piano and organ for decades. During her adolescent and young adult years, Donna played piano for her father’s and uncles’ trio at the East Muskegon Christian Reformed Church. She was one of the original volunteer groups which began serving with the Kalamazoo Deacon's Conference and served with Appalachian Reach Out, which was a ministry between local churches and the Inez, Kentucky community. Among her hobbies, Donna especially enjoyed doing ceramics. Everyone in the family has treasured Christmas ornaments she made. She was especially proud of the Christmas village she had made that was displayed under their Christmas tree for years.

Donna was a reserved but kind and loving person. She especially loved her family and was intensely proud of them all. She had a particularly strong relationship with her mother. The two of them exchanged weekly letters following the move to Kalamazoo in 1962. Donna was also an avid sports fan. It was typical to find their television tuned to a sporting event.

She was united in marriage with Russell Vanderwell on June 28, 1950. Russell preceded her in death on January 6, 2022. Donna and Russ were happily married for over 71 years. Together they spent a number of wonderful summers at Sandy Pines in Michigan as well as winters in Panama City Beach, FL. following retirement.

Donna is survived by her children, Charles (Susan Nichols) Vanderwell, Ruth (Larry) DeHaan, Cheryl DeHaan, Robert (Laura) Vanderwell; nine grandchildren; numerous great and great-great grandchildren; and one brother, Loren Boes. She was preceded in death by two brothers, Kenneth Boes and Allan Boes along with his wife, Shirley Boes; and one son-in-law, Jack DeHaan.

Friends may visit with the family on Saturday, October 22, 2022, from 10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. at Second Christian Reformed Church, 3015 Nichols Rd, Kalamazoo, MI 49004, where the funeral service will follow at 11:30 a.m. After the service friends are invited to join the family for a reception at the church. A graveside service will follow the reception at 2:00 p.m. at Riverside Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be given to Kalamazoo Christian Schools Association, Kindred Hospice, or Second Christian Reformed Church. Please visit https://www.langelands.com to view the online obituary, sign the guest book, and leave messages for the family.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Donna Mae (Boes) Vanderwell, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Saturday, October 22, 2022

10:30 - 11:30 am (Eastern time)

Second Christian Reformed Church

3015 Nichols Road, Kalamazoo, MI 49004

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Funeral Service

Saturday, October 22, 2022

Starts at 11:30 am (Eastern time)

Second Christian Reformed Church

3015 Nichols Road, Kalamazoo, MI 49004

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Graveside Service

Saturday, October 22, 2022

2:00 - 4:00 pm (Eastern time)

Riverside Cemetery (Kalamazoo)

1015 Gull Road, Kalamazoo, MI 49048

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