DeVos family, Van Andel greet public at Amway Grand Hotel

Posted at 6:37 PM, Sep 12, 2018
and last updated 2018-09-12 18:37:33-04

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. -- Commemorations for Rich DeVos headed to the Amway Grand Hotel where the public expressed condolences to his family members. According to media relations, over a thousand people stopped through the Ambassador Ballroom.

David Hooker, president of Frederik Meijer Garden said, "When anybody passes, even with the certainty of the resurrection, it's important to get together. It's important to show your love. We all have stories on our hearts. We need to get those off our hearts and out and share them with each other."

Joe Jones, president of Grand Rapids Urban League said, "His impact has touched the urban core. It has touched the lakeshore. It's touched every end of the world."

He described DeVos as "a world changer."

Vicki Weaver is the president of the Spectrum Health Foundation and the Helen DeVos Children's Hospital Foundation. She noted his vision behind the Medical Mile.

"The fact that we can, any critical need can be met here because of what he inspired and what he supported and what he encouraged other people to support, families don't need to leave the area anymore to get that care. Heart transplants are done here. He has made a huge impact in terms of health care," Weaver said.

The one thing people commonly said they'll miss the most is his personal touch.

Dr. Bob Connors, the president of Helen DeVos Children's Hospital said, "Rich, for us, was a very engaging person. When you sat down with Rich DeVos he was talking with you and you knew very well that maybe yesterday he was talking to the president. So he had a bigger than life persona but a very personal relationship with the people that he dealt with."

Vice President Mike Pence was in town for another event and met with DeVos' family privately at the hotel afterward.

A private memorial service is set for tomorrow and will be streamed to the public at DeVos Place.