Marva Joyce Olthouse, 89

Marva Joyce Olthouse, 89, died on Sunday, May 13, 2012.

Born in Muskegon, Mich., to Joseph Schneider and Hilda (Lintger) Schneider on May 17, 1922,  Marva was the second oldest of six siblings, Anne (Arthur Griffith), Carl (Ruth Kinney), Russell (Marjorie Rykse), Helen (Carroll Edwin Gates) and Joseph Junior (Roma Gallert).

Hilda insisted on a Christian education for all of her children, and Marva graduated from Grand Rapids Christian High.

Marva married USMC LCpl Arthur Mark Olthouse in Klise Memorial Chapel, Grand Rapids, Mich., on Dec. 15, 1944, upon his return from Guadalcanal, Peleliu and New Caledonia.

The newlyweds moved to San Francisco to complete his enlistment then returned to Grand Rapids as employees of Michigan Bell Telephone.

Marva married Mark on the condition that she would not be a farmer’s wife.

They settled in Dutton where they raised their four children, Mark of Findlay (married Terry Willems and their children, Jill (married Fredrick Curry), Marcy, Jodi and Will); James [Harm], Marion, Iowa (married to Debra Sleeper: sons Timothy and Joseph); Jane, New City, N.Y. (married to Lewis Lind: son Donnie (married Ciara McBain; their daughter Magnolia Grace is Marva’s great-granddaughter) and daughter Victoria); and Barbara, Phoenix, Ariz., (married to Michael Campbell; daughters Christina Spicer (married to Simon Willman) and Heather Spicer.

Marva shared her mother’s passion for Christian education and was among those instrumental in founding Dutton Christian School, from which all of her children graduated.

She was an exceptional secretary in the church and at Sentry Insurance. Marva loved to sew, paint, golf and read.

Despite their agreement, Marva found that she could take Mark off the farm but she could not take the farm out of Mark.

They soon had a small farm near Dutton; in time they outgrew those forty acres and moved to Thornapple Hill Stock Farm near Caledonia.

They retired briefly to Duncan Lake but further adventures called.

Marva and Mark lived a full life of Christian service, opening their hearts, their homes and their lives to all who shared their love for God.

In retirement they served as workers and leaders in Ohio, Arizona, Indiana and Florida.

Marva’s ashes will be interred next to Mark’s during a family reunion over the Memorial Day weekend.

Arrangements have been entrusted to Coldren-Crates Funeral Homes of Findlay.

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