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Evan Van Antwerp


1938 - 2015 Obituary Condolences
Evan Van Antwerp Obituary
EVAN J. VAN ANTWERP of Palm Springs passed away on January 23, 2015 at age 76 due to prostate cancer. Evan was born Aug. 17, 1938 to Leslie Walker Van Antwerp and Eva (Weisenberger) Van Antwerp in Williamsport, PA. As his father was a career Air Force officer, Evan grew up in Louisville, KY, Reno, NV, and Vacaville, CA in his early years. His family was posted to Guam just four years after WWII and he spent his junior high years at Lakewood, WA outside of McChord Air Force Base (AFB). Evan graduated from Riverside Polytechnic High School in 1956 while his folks were stationed at March AFB. He earned his B.A. from Washington State College in hotel and restaurant administration in 1960. In 1961, he attended Naval Officer's candidate school in Rhode Island, but his stint with the Navy was cut short by arthritis of the spine. Shortly after, Evan and two female friends took a memorable seven month trip through all of Europe on the cheap by making do with simple local fare and hitching rides and touring on a Vespa obtained in East Germany the day before it closed to the west. Evan worked many years in the hospitality field. The hotels and restaurants where he worked include Mission Inn, Hotel del Coronado, Du-par's restaurant, Old Virginia Steakhouse, Palmer House, and the Del Rey Yacht Club in southern California and Kontiki Restaurant in Arizona. Evan also trained in interior design under Allen Edwards in Toronto in 1969 and worked for Joseph Andre Interiors in Beverly Hills during 197073. In 1978, Evan moved back to Riverside and spent 17 wonderful years working as a travel agent. He enjoyed his own travel adventures to destinations as far flung as China, Italy, Europe, the Caribbean, Peru, Argentina, and East Africa, as well as taking many travel agent "familiarization" trips and cruises. During his time in Riverside, he also bought and managed a four-unit apartment building. Evan moved to Palm Springs in 2005. He used his gift in interior d‚cor to make magical settings out of his surroundings, whether his apartments in L.A. and Riverside or his elegant Palm Springs home. Evan poured his passion for progressive issues into his regular Letters to the Editor in local papers, and added his enthusiasm and skills to fundraising projects. He kept an active schedule participating in gay pride activities and many social and support groups. Evan enjoyed going on outings with Great Outdoors, walking with Frontrunners and his regular gym and yoga workouts. Evan was a loving care-giver around the clock to his mother in her last seven years and a loving brother and uncle. He showed an admirable ability to make and nurture lasting friendships with many people in varied walks of life and to give of himself to those whose lives he touched. As one close friend shared, "His whole being was about caring." Evan's witty sense of humor and sense of fun brought sunshine to many. His motto was: "La Dolce Vita," the sweet life. He will be dearly missed. Evan is predeceased by his parents and brother Leslie Walker Van Antwerp Jr. He is survived by his sister Helen (Van Antwerp) Ellingson of Lakewood WA; nephews Leslie Walker III, Dorn and Gard Van Antwerp from the LA area and nieces Laurie Timmermann of Washington, DC and Kate Finn of Ithaca, NY. Donations may be made in Evan's name to Desert AIDS Projects in Palm Springs, CA. Any inquiries may be made to Walker at: (213) 880-6169.


Published in Press-Enterprise on Feb. 8, 2015
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