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Nancy Heydenburg

February 13, 1938 - April 15, 2020
Marne, MI

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Saturday, April 18, 2020
11:00 AM EDT
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Service was held earlier.
Grand Rapids, MI

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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.

Alpine Baptist Church
692 7 Mile Road NW
Comstock Park, MI 49321
Web Site

Life Story / Obituary


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Nancy Heydenburg was a caring wife, mother, and grandmother. She faithfully served her church community for many years. She had an immense love for her family and was especially thrilled when she was blessed with grandchildren. Nancy leaves behind a legacy of being generous beyond measure and will be deeply missed and lovingly remembered by her many special friends and family.

In the year 1938, Congress passed the Fair Labor Standards Act, which established the first minimum wage and the forty-hour workweek. The most anticipated sporting event of the 20th century was held where the underdog Seabiscuit defeated War Admiral at the Pimlico Race Course making history! In Grand Rapids, Michigan, Woodrow and Margaret (Hopkins) Proctor welcomed home their newborn daughter, Nancy Anne, born on February 13th. Born the oldest of four children, her birth brought much happiness to the family home.

Nancy was raised by a set of loving parents who instilled in her the value of education and a strong foundation of faith. Her father worked as a machine builder for C.O. Porter Company and her mother worked as a sales clerk at Steketee's Department Store. Growing up at 647 Butterworth, Nancy lived a typical childhood of the times. She loved to spend time picking beans and cherries as a young child. As a family, they enjoyed taking road trips to her grandparent’s farm, Hopkins Farm, in Stanwood. Nancy was given eggs to sell back at home to help pay for their trip! She was studious and hardworking at a young age balancing school as well as her work at the local Dairy Queen on Walker. Graduating with the Class of 1956 from Union High School, she set off to join the world of work.

Not to be forgotten was the meeting of the man of her dreams, Douglas Heydenburg, who had just returned home from the service! She joined her sister, Jane who was meeting up with Douglas’s brother, Don, on a double date! The couples enjoyed a long ride together and Douglas and Nancy hit it off right from the start! Remarkable to note, both couples went on to marry! Nancy and Douglas joined in marriage at the 2nd Reformed Baptist Church on May 3, 1957. They settled in their first home on Butterworth and over the course of nine years, they welcomed home five wonderful children. The family later moved to 1533 Hamilton and eventually left the city for a place on 8th Avenue in the country near Marne by 1969. As a family, they enjoyed many years of camping. They had a trailer on Fish Lake near Greenville and also enjoyed trips up to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and to Estes Park, Colorado. She was a supportive mother yet had strict expectations for each of the children. Nancy worked part-time at Meijer when the kids were younger and later became a licensed realtor serving the community for over fifteen years. Also during this time, she began to her political career running for Tallmadge Township Supervisor and serving a four-year term! Once she set her mind on doing something, there wasn’t anything that Nancy couldn’t accomplish!

Retirement afforded her and Douglas many opportunities for travel and time to spend with their growing family. They treasured their winters in Florida as well as trips out west to New Mexico and Nevada with their fifth-wheel. They also continued their annual trips back to the Hopkins family farm to visit her cousins. Above all else, Nancy cherished her role as a grandmother! She and Douglas knew the route to nearly every ice cream shop in the state of Michigan! They both enjoyed having the grandkids over for sleepovers where they were known to munch on popcorn right out of the tin and stay up late watching movies. The grandkids especially loved to enjoy the hot tub in the winter months and would often run out of the tub to make snow angels and then get back in to warm up! From Easter egg hunts, camping, making crafts, or sleepovers, each and every time spent with Grandma Nancy was sure to be silly and packed with fun!

Nancy also enjoyed many special interests over the years. Everyone knew her love of garage saling! She would often call to tell others what she was looking for so they could hit up some garage sales in search of her treasure! She loved the thrill of a good bargain and discovering items that brought back memories of the past. When it was no longer garage sale season, Nancy loved to frequent her favorite stores; Kohl's and the Dress Barn for deals! A gracious host, Nancy loved to plan parties and would often call frequently to discuss the details even if the party was months away! She also prayed for others in her daily prayers and never missed a special occasion by sending out a thoughtful card or note to add a sparkle to someone’s day! When it came time for relaxation, she enjoyed her crafting along with reading Christian romance novels. A truly loving person, Nancy leaves behind a beautiful collection of fond memories to brighten the hearts of her many special friends and loved ones for generations to come.

Nancy A. Heydenburg, age 82, of Marne, Michigan, entered her heavenly home April 15, 2020. Nancy was born February 13, 1938, in Grand Rapids to the late Woodrow and Margaret (Hopkins) Proctor. On May 3, 1957, she married Douglas Heydenburg. Nancy was a member of Alpine Baptist Church and will be remembered for her love of crafts and especially her love for her grandchildren. She is survived by her husband of 62 years, her children, Paul (Julie) Heydenburg of Sparta, Marcia Palasck of Marne, Steven (Melinda) Heydenburg of Cedar Springs, Alan (Lisa) Heydenburg of Cedar Springs, Philip Heydenburg of Coopersville; 11 grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren. Also surviving are her sisters, Cathy (Joseph) Gillard of Ada, Carole (Robert) Reese of Pheasant Hill, MO; and sister-in-law, Yvonne (Roger) Wynsma of Grandville. She was preceded in death by her sister, Mary Jane Lamse. A private family service will be held Saturday, April 18, 2020, at Heritage Life Story Funeral Home, 2120 Lake Michigan Drive NW. Interment will be in Chapel Hill Memorial Gardens. Memorials may be made to Alpine Baptist Church.

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