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Life Story / Obituary
Keith Horstman, was born in the spring of 1936 on May 30 to Gerrit and Angelina (Holland) in Sioux Center Iowa. He was the fifth son born to this family which would eventually total 11 children of 10 boys and one girl. Gerrit was a farmer and all the children helped on the farm as they were needed and Keith was often loaned out to neighbor farmers as a helping and paid hand. This work also helped support the large Horstman family. Keith also went to school and completed 8th grade before devoting all his time to working. The Horstman family was part of the Dutch community of Sioux Center and were very active members of the Christian Reformed Church.
Jobs were difficult to find in the farming community and Keith, at about the age of 20, saw an advertisement from Keeler Brass of Grand Rapids for labor positions in their factory. Keith, who had a brother living in Grand Rapids, jumped at the chance to move to Grand Rapids to find employment. He drove to Grand Rapids and applied for a position at Keller Brass and was hired the same day. He temporarily lived with his brother before moving to a boarding house with a friend. While in Grand Rapids Keith attended Eastern Ave. Christian Reformed Church and participated in the church youth group. There he met Anna (Ann) Halma who also recently moved to Grand Rapids from her farming family in South Dakota. A romance developed and they were married in 1957 at Eastern Ave. Christian Reformed Church and they settled in a home on Grandville Ave. where they welcomed their son Roland into their family and then later moved to a home on Page NE where they welcomed a daughter Loretta and then later moved to a home on Wilbur NE where they welcomed their third child Dianne.
While living on the north side they joined the Riverside Christian Reformed Church which was new congregation. Keith and Ann were very active members of the church participating in many activities and where Keith served as a Deacon as well as an Elder. Keith was always very welcoming at church and could be relied upon to supply “Smarty” candy to the children.
Keith was never one to just sit and do nothing so he began his own lawn care business caring for several customers in the Grand Rapids area. He spent many evenings and Saturdays caring for customers lawns an often with the help of his children who would come along and assist. When Keeler Brass closed it’s doors Keith went on to make his “part time” work this full time job and developed a rather large customer base in the Grand Rapids Metropolitan area. They eventually moved to a home in Sparta where he had enough land to store his lawn equipment. It was not unusual for Keith to share his faith with his customers and invite them to join him at Riverside Church.
The family did some traveling during their growing up years and remember trips to various destinations in Michigan as well as visiting relatives in Iowa and South Dakota and seeing some of the sights along the way. After retirement Keith and Ann would visit their son in Texas and their daughter in California.
Keith will be remembered as a strong Christian person, a devoted husband, father and grandfather who had a very strong work ethic and was a good roll model for his family and friends.
Mr. Keith Horstman, aged 87 of Belmont, MI passed away on Sunday, May 7, 2023 while in the comfort of his home and the company of his family. Keith was born in the spring of 1936 in Sioux Center, Iowa to the late Gerrit and Angelina Horstman. Surviving are his wife of 67 years, Ann Horstman, his children: Roland Horstman, Loretta and Joe Van Kammen, Dianne Hansen, 6 grandchildren, 10 great grandchildren, his brothers and sisters-in-laws Gene and June Horstman, Del and Marla Horstman, Virg and Joan Horstman, Nelson and Gloria Horstman, Gary and Florence Horstman, Robert and Glenda Horstman, his sister Gertrude Visser, his sisters-in-laws Eunice Jonkman and Betty Diedering and several nieces and nephews. A memorial service will be held Thursday, May 11, 2023 at 11 AM at Riverside Christian Reformed Church, (602 Comstock Blvd. NE. Grand Rapids, MI 49505). Relatives and friends are invited to visit with the family at church prior to the service beginning at 10 AM as well as following the service. For those who wish, memorial contributions to Faith Hospice, (8214 Pfeiffer Farms Dr. SW Byron Center, MI 49315) would be appreciated.