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Shirley DeRuiter

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Shirley DeRuiter Obituary
Shirley DeRuiter

Battle Creek

Shirley DeRuiter, Co-founder of Scene Magazine, of Battle Creek passed in her sleep on Sunday morning, November 24, 2013 at the age of 71 at home, with her family at her side. Shirley had been fighting lymphoma since January of 2013.

She was born March 23, 1942 in Grand Rapids, MI to Gerald and Florence (Boltema) Lehnen.  Shirley grew up in Grand Rapids and was a graduate of Ottawa High School.

Shirley was active in the publication's success into her seventies. "Shirley was the force behind the publication," said husband and high school sweetheart Rich DeRuiter, who retired from the business nearly eight years ago.

They have had many proud moments with the publication over the years but are especially pleased to have shared the accomplishments of so many with the Man or Woman of the Year award. Over 27 years they have recognized individuals, husband and wife teams, brothers, father and son teams, co-workers, colleagues, boards, non-profits, as well as area businesses with a special annual event. Just as important to her was the fact that so many of the family came to join them in the business, along with all the other employees, who are just as priceless and always invited and welcomed at family functions.

Shirley has been involved with countless local organizations during her time with the company. Most recently she spent her time with the Art Center of Battle Creek, Centra Care, Alzheimer's and Dementia programs including Miles For Memories, the Cancer Care Center, St Jude's Children's Hospital, The Heart Association; as well as preserving history and antiques.

In her efforts with the parent company, W.W. Thayne Advertising Consultants, Inc., Shirley worked with agency accounts directly and was active as a spokesperson and model.  Not only was Shirley active with the publication but also co-owned and managed their nearby apartment complex as well as assisted husband Rich with their antiques business.  Previous to joining forces with Rich she worked as an executive secretary for leadership at the Kellogg's Headquarters in Battle Creek.

Shirley is survived by Rich her husband of 53 years; children, Rick (Terri) DeRuiter, Sherii (Keith) Sherban, Shelii (David) Penny; grandchildren, Anthony (Tony) DeRuiter, Alyssa DeRuiter, David Sherban, Christyn Sherban, Ashlynn Penny, and Samantha Penny; and her sister, Jerrie Hafsted.  Shirley was preceded in death by her parents, a sister, Beverly Delamatter and her mother and father-in-law, Tony and Verna DeRuiter.

Friends may call 5:00-8:00 p.m. Monday, December 2, 2013 at Farley Estes & Dowdle, 105 Capital Avenue, NE, Battle Creek.  Funeral services will be held at Chapel Hill United Methodist Church 1:00 p.m. Tuesday, December 3, 2013.

In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made to a fund established at the Battle Creek Community Foundation, As Scene By..., that helps to support local students wanting to attend a local college for the purpose of entering a career in publishing.  Personal messages for the family may be placed at www.farleyestesdowdle.com.



Published in Battle Creek Enquirer on Dec. 1, 2013
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