John Henry Van Andel, 97, died on Wednesday, January 19, 2022, at his home in Ellsworth.
He was born March 19, 1924, in McMillan, Michigan, the son of Cornelius and Cora (Kuiper) Van Andel. Upon graduation from Battle Creek High School in 1942, John served as a United States Naval Aviator during World War II. After the war, John served as a pilot for Trans World Airlines for 33 years. He was a senior pilot for TWA as well as a check pilot and flight manager. He married Linda Larson on August 19, 1974, at the city hall in East Jordan. John retired from Trans World Airlines in 1984.
He was a member of the Experimental Aircraft Association and the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association. He was also a charter member of the Six Mile Lake Association. John had served on the South Arm Township Tax Board of Review and Planning and Zoning.
He loved aviation. He enjoyed flying warbirds in air shows in Florida and giving many young aviators their first flight in his J3 Piper Cub on floats. John also enjoyed boating. In 1999, John and Linda embarked on the Great Loop which is a continuous waterway that includes part of the Atlantic and Gulf Intracoastal Waterways, the Great Lakes, Canadian Heritage Canals, and the inland rivers of America’s heartland.
He enjoyed motorcycling, deep sea fishing, downhill skiing and especially golfing. For 17 years he and his wife owned and operated the Flying Dutchman Honey Farm in Ellsworth.
John is survived by his wife Linda Van Andel of Ellsworth; two children, Sean Van Andel of Houston, Texas and Cindi (Jim) Iwanski of Sierra Vista, Arizona; four grandchildren, six great grandchildren and two great great grandchildren; and one sister, Bette Hueller of Grand Rapids. He was preceded in death by his parents, one son, John David Van Andel; and one sister, Ruth Belford.
No services will be held at this time. His remains will be laid to rest at Arlington National Cemetery.
The family was served by the Penzien Funeral Homes, Inc., East Jordan.
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