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Patricia Jane Crame



Memorial Contributions

The Arc Kent County

2922 Fuller Ave., NE Ste 201

Grand Rapids, MI  49505

On November 14, 2021, Patricia J. Crame was welcomed into the loving arms of her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Our hearts will forever miss her dearly, but we know that she is now dancing with her husband of nearly 40 years, Lewis J. Crame. Patricia J. Crame, nee’ Hoekstra, of Cascade, MI, was born in Grand Rapids on March 13, 1934, to Grace Caverley Hoekstra and Paul Theodore Hoekstra. Her oldest daughter, Terri Ellen (DeBoer) Mellinger, her step daughter-in-law, Ruth (Haviland) Crame, her parents and two of her sisters, Carole Lee Hoekstra and Anne Elizabeth Young predeceased her. She attended the former Baldwin Christian School and graduated from Central High School in 1951. She graduated from Grand Rapids Junior (Community) College and received a Bachelor of Arts degree and a Master of Arts Degree from Michigan State University where she was also inducted into the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi.

She was employed by Grand Rapids Public Schools for 22 years as a teacher and administrator. She spent 16 years on Lincoln Campus as principal of Kent Vocational Options, formerly Lincoln Activity Center, and as director of Lincoln Campus, the position from which she retired in 1992. While at Kent Vocational Options, she and her staff developed the Community Based Occupational Training (CBOT) program which continues as a model employment training program for disabled adults. In 1990, the ARC of Kent County recognized Pat as Administrator of the Year.

After retirement, Pat spent a few years with Grand Valley State University as field supervisor of student teachers. She was a Life Member of M. R. Bissel Guild of Blodgett Hospital and volunteered in the Blodgett Coffee Shop. She was also a member of St. Robert of Newminster Catholic Church and did volunteer work there.

Pat was a talented quilter and seamstress and always had a handiwork project ready to pick up on her way out the door.  Additionally, she enjoyed painting in watercolors. When Pat and Lew traveled she loved to search out opportunities to paint and learn from artists of the area. She was a member of the Pine Island Art Association at Matlacha Station, Florida.

Pat and her husband Lew traveled extensively and often spent winters in warmer climates both here and abroad, particularly favoring Spain and Mexico. However, it was Ireland that kept calling them back. She loved making new friends from around the world, absorbing their culture and language. She also treasured their home on the Thornapple River where she enjoyed gardening, relaxing with friends on their river deck or cruising the river and waving to friends and neighbors along the way. Additionally, she and Lew were avid fans of Michigan State University and the name of “the other school” was never used in their home.

Lewis J. Crame, her best friend, life partner and beloved husband predeceased her in 2017. Pat is survived by her children and stepchildren:  Randy Mellinger of Florida, Timothy & Kelley DeBoer of Cascade, Patricia & Michael Moll of Caledonia, Thomas & Karen Kremers DeBoer of Rockford, Denise & Mark Pray of Cascade, Ronald Crame of Gowen, Mary VanOeveren of Rockford, and Richard & Cheryl Crame of Rockford. She also leaves her beloved grandchildren, her “Precious Angels”: Christa and David (Pray) Schwarz, Emily and Dustin (Pray) Rang, Whitney and Wesley (Moll) Blood, and Stacie Moll, Jacob Mellinger, Brianna and Scott (Mellinger) Boley, KayLee and Dan (DeBoer) Celko, Jamie Christianson, Tim DeBoer, Michael VanOeveren, Katie and Zachary (VanOeveren) DeYoung, Nick and Jen Hanline, Bethany Hanline, and Amy Lauretti; twelve great-grandchildren; a sister, Marjorie Carpenter of Florida, two nieces: Judy and Fred Osborn, and Dianne and Craig Bonofiglo; her precious fur-baby Darby; many treasured friends, staff and residents at Sentinel Pointe (many who became family)  and the Lincoln Campus staff and students to whom she devoted her professional career.

A celebration of her life will take place at a later date. Her family requests that, in lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to The Arc Kent County, 2922 Fuller Ave., NE Ste 201 Grand Rapids, MI  49505.

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One Response

  1. A special educator, special friend and special human being. Heaven just became a happier place.

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