David Vander Sluis

June 7, 2018

Obit DavidVanderSluisJune 30, 1953 – April 5, 2018

Funeral services for Da­vid Wayne Vander Sluis, a native of Tyler, will be held Saturday, June 16, 1 p.m. at Holland Presbyterian Church, immediately fol­lowed by burial in the Hol­land Cemetery. He passed away at the age of 64 on April 5 in Jacksonville, Florida, surrounded by his children and grandchil­dren.
Born in Tyler on June 30, 1953 to Berton “Bud” and Irma (Evink) Vander Sluis, David grew up on dairy farms near Buffalo Ridge, between Holland and Ty­ler. In his formative years he was active in Tyler’s 4-H, FFA and high school band (trombone), and in the Holland Presbyterian Church and youth group. Although a full-blooded Dutchman, he graduated a proud Tyler High School Dane in 1971.
In 1973, David and his buddy Steve Utoft struck out for southern Califor­nia, one car towing the other. After California, life’s adventures took him to Nevada, Colorado, South Dakota, and finally back to Minnesota. His fa­vorite vocation was work­ing for himself as a finish carpenter. His favorite pas­time, having a serious gift of gab, was talking with people. He loved life, ad­ventures, the Lord Jesus, and his family.
David is lovingly re­membered by his son Ja­son (Katie) Vander Sluis of Jacksonville, Florida and daughter Shelly (Chuck) Littlefield of Melbourne, Florida; three brothers— Gary (Shelley) Vander Sluis of Roanoke, Texas, Bradley (Mary Beth) Vander Sluis of Center City, and Rolland (Katherine) Vander Sluis of Santa Rosa, California; and four grandchildren— Cole Vander Sluis, Stella Vander Sluis, Ava Memrick and Alec Memrick. David was preceded in death by his parents.
If you are so inclined, the family encourages you to donate in his memory to Friends of Lillehei Heart Institute at https://makin­gagift.umn.edu/give/fund. html?id=20012.
Dr. C. Walton Lillehei, “the father of open-heart surgery,” along with pio­neer heart surgeon Dr. Christian Barnard, per­formed two open-heart surgeries on David when he was 8 and 10 years old at the University of Minne­sota Medical Center. With­out the surgeries to repair a congenital heart defect, it’s unlikely David would have lived to adulthood. Over the last six months of his life, David was again cared for by the next gen­eration of heart specialists and support staff at the U of M Medical Center.