Edward L. "Spanky" Van Houten, Jr.
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BELLVILLE: Patriotic, honorable, giving; these words depict the character of Ed Van Houten. For years, Ed was active in serving the Village of Bellville, and was instrumental in organizing Bellville's Memorial Day and Fourth of July Parades. His efforts made "The Valley" a better place to live.
Without pain or discomfort, Edward L. "Spanky" Van Houten, Jr. peacefully passed away at home on Sunday morning March 16, 2014. He was 61.
The son of Edward and Marilyn (Swank) Van Houten, Ed was born June 26, 1952.
Quite honestly, Spanky should have been a politician. He could shoot the breeze with anyone, and that's what made him the very best salesman. For over 28 years, he worked in sales for Containercraft in Lexington. Due to his dedication and hard work in sales, Ed along with his wife Sandy, were fortunate to travel across America.
To Spanky, there was never a need to travel via highway or main road. Taking winding country roads, he had a confident sense of direction, using landmarks instead of signs as points of reference en route to his destination.
Spanky enjoyed golfing and was an excellent carpenter.
He served on numerous committees within the Bellville community, most notably as a life member and First Vice President of the Sons of the American Legion Irvin Hiskey Post #535. Ed also served as the 5th District's, First Vice President of the Sons of American Legion. He was a member of the North Bend Church of the Brethren in Butler.
He is survived by his wife, Sandra Van Houten; mother, Marilyn Van Houten; and brother, Dennis (Jeanne) Van Houten, all of Bellville; sister, Vonda (Bruce) Robinson, of Fredericktown; step children, Joela Sawdey and Laurie Kershner both of Bellville; step granddaughter, Jolene (Steve) Sawdey of San Jose, California; nephews, Drew (Chelsea) Van Houten and DJ Van Houten, all of Bellville, John (Sylvia) Robinson of Columbus; niece, Amy (Andrew) Seward of Fredericktown; special cousin, Carmen (Jim) Frazier of Fredericktown; brothers-in-law, Harold Oyster of Mt. Gilead and Marion (Cheryl) Oyster of Dresden; sister-in-law, Pat Shavers of Ashland, Kentucky, Linda Miller of Bellville and Janet (Bob) Blair of Ashland, Kentucky; along with numerous other extended family and friends.
Along with his father he was preceded in death by his brother, Doug Van Houten; brothers-in-law, Orval Oyster, Jr., and Bob Shavers.
The family will receive friends Wednesday, March 19, 2014 from 12-2 pm and 4-7pm in the Bellville Snyder Funeral Home. Services will begin promptly at 7pm, with the Bellville American Legion Post #535 performing salute honors. Pastor Patrick Bailey will officiate.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions to Child Welfare, Gifts for Yanks, or the Jefferson Township-Bellville Rescue Squad may be made through the funeral home.
Online condolences to the family may be made by visiting: www.snyderfuneralhomes.com.
Snyder Funeral Home
81 Mill Rd Bellville, OH 44813
Published in the News Journal on Mar. 18, 2014