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John C., "Jack," CFSP, went home to be with his Lord on Wednesday, December 18, 2013.
Born in Garfield, Jack was graduated of Eastern Academy, then served in the Army Air Corps as an Aviation Cadet during World War II. Following his service he went to Mc Allister College of Mortuary Science graduating in 1948, then received his NJ state license as a Funeral Director and Embalmer. He joined his father in the operation of the Vander Plaat Home in Garfield which his grandfather established in 1894. In 1952 Jack and his father opened a branch in Wyckoff.
Jack's professional memberships included: The National Funeral Director's Assoc., NJ State Funeral Director's Assoc., Bergen County Funeral Director's Assoc. where he served as president, Order of The Golden Rule and was a Certified Funeral Service Practitioner with the Academy of Professional Funeral Service Practice.
Jack also served his community in various ways including: Wyckoff Township Committee where he served as mayor in 1961 and 1968, Road Commissioner and Police Commissioner. He was nominated by the Wyckoff Junior Chamber of Commerce for the NJ Jaycee Distinguished Service Award. He served on the Wyckoff Planning Board and Vice Chair of the Northwest Bergen Municipalities Association. A former member of the Wyckoff YMCA Board of Directors, former president of the Wyckoff Chamber of Commerce, 57 Year member and former president of the Wyckoff Lions Club, a 57 year member of the Wyckoff Midland Park Post #130 American Legion, a life member of Wyckoff Protection Fire Co. #1, and member of Wyckoff Exempt Firemen's Assoc. Jack was a member and former president of the The Cathedral Choir. He was extremely active in the Bergen-Hudson Chapter of the American Red Cross where he was a team leader for local disaster response and had been on 60 national disasters. He also served as a Disaster Instructor, training new Red Cross volunteers in basic disaster courses. A former trustee of The Valley Hospital in Ridgewood, a former member of the board of directors of the Eastern Christian Children's Retreat in Wyckoff for 18 years and a member of the Holland Christian Home Board of Directors for 9 years and continued serving on many other boards. Jack was a member of the Cedar Hill Christian Reformed Church in Wyckoff where he served the congregation as a member of the Choir, a Sunday school teacher, a Deacon and Elder on the Church Council.
He is survived by his loving wife of 65 years Elizabeth, his beloved children Jay Vander Plaat of Huletts Landing, NY, Linda and her husband Bill Brock of Wyckoff, and Brenda and her husband Russ Hoeffs of Midland Park, his six grandchildren: Joseph, Tim, Robert, Jackie, Kelly and Matthew, and twelve great grandchildren.
The family will receive friends on Sunday 2-4 and 7-9 PM at the Vander Plaat Funeral Home, www.vpfh.com, 257 Godwin Ave., Wyckoff, NJ. Memorial service is Monday 11 AM at the Cedar Hill Christian Reformed Church, 422 Cedar Hill Ave., Wyckoff.
Memorial contributions may be made in Jack's name to the Holland Christian Home, 151 Graham Ave., North Haledon, NJ 07508.
Published in The Record/Herald News from Dec. 20 to Dec. 21, 2013