Richard John VanTuinen
March 16, 1932 – March 25, 2022 (age 90)
Richard passed away on March 25, 2022 in Longmont Colorado.
He was born in Bozeman, Montana on March 16, 1932 to Richard and Jennie (Postma) VanTuinen. He grew up in an area that was beautiful but rugged. His love of the outdoors, and quest for knowledge was set in those early years in Montana. He graduated from the high school in Bozeman and attended Montana State University also in Bozeman. His fascination of science mathematics was his emphasis.
Thru the later years of college, he worked in Yellowstone National Park as a ranger. By a happy coincidence he got gas at a station where Marlene Scott worked as a bookkeeper. They began dating on extremely limited budgets and joked years later those early dates included events such as watching bears play, picnics in the park, watching old faithful, or walking the sidewalks of Jackson Hole. After Richard graduated from the University he served for 2 years in the Army medical field during the Korean War. His duty included time in Germany. After completion of Active duty he and Marlene married on August 30, 1958.
They moved to Rochester, New York where Richard began working for the United States Public Health Service while Marlene taught as an elementary school teacher. The Public Health service took them to Virginia and then Michigan where he earned a master’s degree. They moved to Cincinnati, Ohio where they raised their family and Richard worked at University Hospital in Radiological Services. After retirement from the Public Health Service, Consulting work took them to Colorado, working at Rocky Flats, and then to Washington for employment at Hanford. After retiring, Richard and Marlene came back to Longmont, Colorado and enjoyed proximity to the mountains and visits with extended family.
It is interesting that he once mentioned that a variation on the spelling of his last name means “gardener” in the Dutch language. In his free time he spent morning hours working on various gardening tasks. He spent time with his children pursuing interests in the outdoors. The family camped in the summers at National parks. Vacations consisted of yearly visits out west to visit extended family, and to experience and enjoy the mountains. Walks thru the woods with his children brought about many lessons on animals, plants, and care of nature. Richard was a man of integrity who lived his faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and passed on a heritage of enjoyment and awe of God’s creation.
Richard was preceded in death by his wife, whom he lovingly cared for until she passed away in 2020, his parents, his sister Betty C. Bunt, brothers in law Irvin Scott and Douglas Scott, and sister in law Lucy Scott. He is survived by his children Rich and Sonya VanTuinen, Janet and Jeff McKinley, and sister in law Lorenchia Scott. He and Marlene had seven much loved grandchildren, several great grandchildren, and close cousins. The family is grateful to the Longmont medical community and TRU Community Care.
A military service will be held at Fort Logan on April 6, 2022 at 11:00 am. If you would like to donate in Richards name, consider giving to your church or church supported mission.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Richard John Van Tuinen, please visit our floral store.