Edsko and Claire (Kuiper) Hekman

Their family was instrumental in the development of Calvin College.

Claire (Kuiper) Hekman died 26 Sep 2007 at the age of 93.

Claire was born 29 July 1914 in Grand Rapids, Michigan, the second child of Rev. H. J. and Mrs. Cornelia Kuiper. Her sister was Helen (Kuiper) Noordewier whose was wed to Jay Noordewier.

She graduated Grand Rapids Christian High school and in 1935 from Calvin College and taught at Wyoming Park High School and Burton Junior High School before aiding her husband, Edsko in his various business ventures.

On 17 June 1938 she married Edsko Hekman and they lived for several years in Chicago. They returned to Grand Rapids in 1949.

They had three children, Elizabeth who married Philip Gordon and resides at Spring Lake, MI, Rosemary who married David Good and resides in St. Louis Park, MN, and Edsko Henry Hekman who resided for many years at Pine Rest.

She was preceded in death by her parents, her sister, her husband, Edsko, who died in 2000, and their son, Edsko Henry, who died in 2003. She is survived by her daughters, six grandchildren, eight great-grandchildren and one great-great granddaughter.

In 1928, the library at Calvinís former Franklin Street property was named in honor of Edsko Hekmanís grandfather, a Dutch immigrant who built the Hekman Biscuit Company and also founded the Hekman Furniture Company. The school moved to its current campus in 1962. In 1993 the pair donated $1.3 million toward the addition of a fifth floor to what since has been known as the Hekman Library. The library includes the Rev. H. J. Kuiper Reading Room, a childrenís literature collection, which is named in honor of Mrs. Hekmanís father. Rev. Kuiper was the editor of the Christian Reformed Churchís magazine for many years.

Edsko Hekman was an alumnus of Calvin and member of the Greater Grand Rapids Business Hall of Fame. He founded Import Motors, was a partner in WOOD radio and became the president of Meridian Corp.

A memorial service for Mrs. Hekman is planned at the First Presbyterian Church in Grand Haven, Michigan.

Transcriber: ES
Created: 6 May 2008
URL: http://kent.migenweb.net/biographies/local/hekmanEdsko.html