Vandertuin, William (1932- 2019) –
After a severe battle with Parkinson’s disease, William passed away on Tuesday, January 15, 2019 at the Stedman Hospice in Brantford, Ontario. The oldest of three sons of John and Jessie Vandertuin, William was predeceased by his wife Gloria (2001) and his younger brother Bob (2002). He is survived by his three sons, their wives and four grandchildren; John (Shirley), Ed (Angeline) - Kaitlin, Andy (Linda) - Simon, Ben, Erika. William also leaves behind his younger brother Paul.
Born in Friesland, the Netherlands on March 2, 1932, William immigrated to Canada with his family in 1949, originally settling in Manitoba. After a year of working on a farm as part of an immigration program, he moved to Brandon where he worked at the Psychiatric Hospital. While there he earned a diploma in psychiatric nursing (RPN). At this time he also held the position of organist at St. Matthews Anglican Cathedral. The family remained in Brandon until 1964 when they moved to Brantford to be closer to their oldest son John who was attending the Ontario School for the Blind (now W. Ross MacDonald). Upon arriving in Brantford, William accepted the position of Organist - Choirmaster at Grace Anglican Church, a position he held for 23 years over two periods, 1964-1980 and 1990-1997. William also worked as a physiotherapist at the Brantford General Hospital during his early years, followed by a 20 year career at Screen Print Display, where he left in 1996 as the Head of Planning and Estimating. At this time he made the decision to retire and focus on assisting his wife Gloria during her rapidly declining health. Throughout William’s life, music was his first passion, demonstrated in his ongoing involvement as an organist-choirmaster for numerous churches and choirs, his committed and determined support of his son John’s talent and his involvement in organ consulting which he happily donated his time to. Personal highlights include; his time as organist-accompanist with the Cambridge Kiwanis Boys Choir in the 1980’s with whom he toured Europe (19 concerts in 21 days) and made two LP recordings; being asked to handle the music for a service for the visiting Archbishop of Canterbury in 1994; instituting a number of firsts at Grace Church like the Nine Lessons and Carols service, Sunday afternoon Organ recitals and a Noon Hour Organ Recital series as well as leading mass choirs of area Christian Reformed churches and the 100-plus voice Anglican Deanery choirs. During 2003-2005 William served as interim Organist-Choirmaster at St. Mark’s and St. Jude’s in Brantford. In 2006 he began assisting Stephanie Burgoyne in her “Organ Four Hands” recitals, which he was forced to cease with the serious onset of Parkinson’s Disease. The past year was particularly challenging with a lengthy and difficult time in hospital, a short stay in a retirement home followed by his final number of weeks in hospice. The family would like to thank the staff and doctors at Brantford General Hospital, the staff at Riverview Terrace Retirement Home and the entire team of staff and volunteers at the Stedman Hospice for their support and care.
Family and friends will be received at the TOLL FUNERAL HOME, 55 Charing Cross Street, Brantford on Sunday, January 20, 2019 from 2-4 pm and 7-9 pm.
The Funeral Service will take place on Monday, January, 21, 2019 at Hope Christian Reformed Church, 64 Buchanan Crescent, Brantford at 1 pm, www.hopecrc.ca
In lieu of flowers please make donations to the Stedman Community Hospice