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Wallace Van Deventer


1923 - 2017 Obituary Condolences Gallery
Wallace Van Deventer Obituary
Wallace Ralph Van Deventer
b. June 4, 1923 d. March 5, 2017

Wallace (Van, Wally, Buggum, Tiny) was born in Aurora, Illinois, in the same bedroom where his mother was born a generation earlier. He excelled in high school sports and served as the Student Body President. Wallace was a shinning example of everything the term "America's Greatest Generation" stands for. During World War II, Wallace enlisted in the Army Air Corps. Subsequently, he was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant and successfully completed flight training and served honorably as a P47 Fighter Pilot. Wallace continued his service to his country as a member of the United States Air Force Reserves, retiring in 1968.

Wallace married his childhood sweetheart, Bernice (Peggy) Parmele on December 28, 1944. Wallace remained a loving husband for 72 years and a devoted father to his three children. Commitment to family was a trait that came naturally, one he embraced and from which he never wavered.

Wallace enjoyed a life long enviable career as a leading insurance agent for Allstate Insurance Company. His work embodied personal service. He wrote countless policies, but always followed up as an advocate when claims were filed. His awards are too numerous to list, but Wallace would prefer to be remembered for his personal service and devotion to multiple generations of clients. With a busy work schedule, Wallace always found time for philanthropy and community service. Sertoma, The Elks Lodge, Boy Scouts of America, and the Boys and Girls Club were beneficiaries of his tireless efforts to help others. Wallace's selfless contributions were acknowledge by the community when he was honored as Grand Marshall in the Whittier Founders Day parade in 1999.

Wallace's personal interests were varied. He loved piloting his classic converted Monterey fishing boat on Newport Harbor and playing golf with his friends. His trophy celebrating his hole-in-one was one of many plaques celebrating his numerous achievements. Wallace and Peggy traveled extensively. In addition to traveling for pleasure, they also embarked on an annual trip where Wallace dressed as Santa Claus and gave gifts to children in orphanages around the world.

Wallace and Peggy lived together in the family home in Whittier for 66 years. While sweeping the street in front of the little house on the corner, his neighbors and friends always looked forward to his warm greeting and sincere smile. In this humble home, Wallace and Peggy raised their three children, Beth Ann Spurgeon, Brian Lee, and Brenda Lynn Delaney. He cherished family gatherings with his children, five grandchildren, seven great grandchildren, and one great great grandchild, all who survive him, as well as his brother Robert and his wife Jeanne, and many nieces and nephews. Wallace was proceeded in death by his parents, Ralph Stone and Doris Isabelle Van Deventer and his brother, Gerald Wayne Van Deventer.

A viewing will be held Monday, March 13th, from 6:00-8:00pm at Rose Hills. Wallace's funeral will be held in the Hillside Chapel at Rose Hills in Whittier, Tuesday, March 14, at 11:00 AM. A celebration of life will be held immediately following at the Whittier Elks Lodge, 13620 Whittier Blvd., Whittier. Wallace's family and friends salute a great man on a life well lived.
Published in Whittier Daily News from Mar. 11 to Mar. 12, 2017
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