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Kathryn “Kay” Duiven

December 15, 1912



Born: December 15, 1912
Death: December 30, 2012

Kathryn “Kay” Duiven, 100, of Cascade, passed away Sunday, December 30, 2012. She was preceded in death by her husband, Nick, Jr., in 1985, brothers, Reeves, Jack, and Richard Simms, and sister, Margaret Voss. Kay will be lovingly remembered by her sons, Courtney Duiven, Nick ( Nancy ) Duiven, III; brother, W. Robert (Eleanor) Simms; sister-in-law, Lillian Simms; eight grandchildren, 21 great-grandchildren, four great-great-grandchildren and many other family and friends. Kay Simms was born on December 15, 1912 in Columbus Ohio. Her family moved to Grand Rapids, where she graduated from Union High School honored as Valedictorian of her class. An avid reader throughout her life, Kay was known for reading every book in the high school library. She came of age at the onset of the great depression. As the oldest of six children, Kay turned down a scholarship to the University of Michigan to go to work at the Travelers Insurance Company to earn a salary to contribute to her family. When she married Nick Duiven Jr. she was saddened to learn that married “girls” were not allowed to continue working, as she loved her work. Kay and her husband, Nick, had two sons. Shortly after their second son was born, Nick was sickened with polio. He slowly recovered and Kay set about raising their two sons and providing rehabilitation for Nick to help him regain his ability to walk. They went on to live a happy, prosperous and full life; traveling, hosting family gatherings at their home on the Thornapple River and sharing in their good fortune. During this time Kay began a long and satisfying career in school administration at Forest Hills Central High School. Kay will be remembered for her elegance, wisdom, positive, can-do outlook and her strong family leadership through difficult times. No matter how dark the days, Kay could always see how life was really “the berries.” Memorial Service will be held on Saturday January 12, 2013 at 1pm at Heather Hills Retirement Village , 1055 Forest Hill Ave SE, Grand Rapids, Michigan . Join Kay’s family and friends in remembering her remarkable life. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made in Kay’s name to her lifelong church, First Park Congregational Church, 10 Park Place NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49503.

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