School 04


Pauline Vanderleest

June 12, 1925 ~ December 8, 2018 (age 93)

Pauline Vanderleest, 93, passed away peacefully at home on December 8, 2018.  She was born, raised and lived in Grand Rapids all her life.  She was the widow of Albert J. Vanderleest who died in 1982 and is survived by daughter Jane Vanderleest, her brother William DeBruyn, sister-in-law Phyllis DeBruyn and many nieces and nephews.  Pauline was preceded in death by her parents Arend and Johanna DeBruyn and her siblings Geraldine, Elizabeth, Arend, Peter, John, Alida, and Johanna.  Pauline received a BS degree from Western Michigan University and a Master’s degree from Michigan State University.  She taught school in Grand Rapids and the suburbs for 42 years and her love of children and dedication to her craft made her an exceptional teacher.  Her family enjoyed their time together water skiing, cross country skiing, snowmobiling, playing bridge with friends, golfing, building a new home on their northern property, vacationing, and watching Al try some other more extreme sports that she decided not to try.  There were lots of happy moments together.  She also became active in politics and was elected as a precinct delegate serving two terms.  Later she concentrated on writing and publishing the DeBruyn family history with assistance from a special cousin who lived in the Netherlands.  This was completed for family members in 2002.  In her retirement she also worked for the Grand Rapids Public Schools writing and evaluating Competency Exams as well as volunteering time helping City High-Middle School with various duties.  Pauline enjoyed working in her garden, reading, attending the Grand Rapids Symphony and Opera, and traveling with her daughter.  Trips to Europe and locations in the United States are fondly remembered by both.  Pauline is a member of Trinity United Methodist Church.  Pauline’s family would like to thank Spectrum Hospice for all their loving care and support.  In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made to Spectrum Hospice or Trinity United Methodist Church.  A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. on Thursday, January 17, 2019 at Trinity United Methodist Church, 1100 Lake Drive SE, Grand Rapids, MI.  Visitation will take place one hour before the service.

Donations may be made to:

Trinity United Methodist Church
1100 Lake Dr. S.E., Grand Rapids MI 49506
Tel: 1-616-456-7168

Spectrum Health Hospice
750 Fuller Avenue NE, Grand Rapids MI 49503

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