James W. VanAsselt
01/17/1941 - 10/20/2021
Obituary For James W. VanAsselt
James W. Van Asselt, age 80, began his Heavenly journey Wednesday, October 20, 2021.
Jim was born on January 17, 1941 to William and Jennie (Karp) VanAsselt who preceded him in death. Jim grew up in Grant, Michigan and worked for his entire career at Knape and Vogt Manufacturing in Grand Rapids where he was Plant Superintendent. He also served his country in the Army National Guard. Jim excelled at catching fish and enjoyed spending time on the lake with several fishing buddies. He was known for his quick wit, willingness to help others and his occasional stubbornness.
He was a special husband, father, grandfather, great grandfather, brother and friend to many.
Jim was preceded in death by his first wife, Carolyn VanAsselt in 2006; his son-in-law, Mike Kapteyn in 2020; and his second wife, Carla VanAsselt in 2021.
Jim is survived by his daughters, Luanne Helsen, Sally Kapteyn, Sandee Babb, and Laurie (Jim) Reitsma; his step-daughters, Donna (Mike) Bouwkamp, Dawn (Craig) Brown; his grandchildren, Jennifer (Jeremy) Wiltenburg, Jeff Helsen, Ashley (Phil) Stone, Kevin Kapteyn, DJ Babb, Kamryn (Gabe) Shubel, Cassy Babb, Matt Reitsma and fiancé Monica Bussell, Bailey Reitsma, Kelly Reitsma, Jenna Reitsma, Jason Reitsma, Mariah Bouwkamp, Marissa Bouwkamp, Pamela (Taylor) Link, CJ Brown; and several great grandchildren.
He is also survived by his siblings, Don (Ernestine) VanAsselt, Ken (Alberta) VanAsselt, Jean (Jerry) Keas; his brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, Bob Jernberg, Paul Jernberg; Judy (Dave) Behler, Jewel (Dave) Stark, Bonna (Rick) Hult, and Greta (Al) Boldt; also many nieces, nephews, and cousins.
Funeral services will be held at 1:00pm on Monday, October 25, 2021 at the Sparta United Methodist Church, 54 E Division Street, Sparta, MI 49345. Rev. Phil Friedrick will be officiating.
Relatives and friends may meet the family from 2:00pm until 5:00pm on Sunday, October 24, 2021 at the Hessel-Cheslek Funeral Home, 88 E. Division Street in Sparta.
Burial will take place in Algoma Township Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial contributions to the National Kidney Foundation of Michigan, Grand Rapids Branch or to the Sparta United Methodist Church.
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I really enjoyed Jim, especially working the Community Breakfasts at Sparta UMC and surf fishing for steelhead in the fall. My sympathizes go out to his family and to the rest of us who considered Jim a friend.
Your father was my softball coach at Fairview Church. I couldn't believe the faith he had in my abilities! He was a great coach and wonderful man. He even threw wonderful get togethers at the lake when our season ended. We were sad to have you leave our church but knew God had plans for all of you elsewhere. Blessings to all your family. Jewel Borgeld
To Jim's family I want to express my deepest condolences for your loss. Jim was such a special person and he will be greatly missed. I feel so fortunate that he was at our high school class reunion last August. I recall he said that he hadn't planned on going but at the last moment, decided that he needed to be there. We were all so happy to see him.
Our hearts are truly broken with the loss of our beloved neighbor Big Jim. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family during this most difficult time. We will miss you Jim 💔
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