‘Twas the spring of 1929
Shortly before the Depression
When Dick DenUyl entered this world
To make a lasting impression
Born in Grosse Point, to Simon and Marj
In his father’s footsteps he tread
But summers spent in Macatawa
Would nurture and keep his dreams fed
From the great Hotel Macatawa
To Point West, The Hatch and still more
His hospitality legacy
Was never far from Holland’s Shore
When downtown was in need of rebirth
He and partner Jim responded
With 8th St Grille and 84 East
To which patrons quickly bonded
So many lives he managed to touch
Both at work and also at play
Likely more than he could imagine
Are so heavy-hearted today
For a great friend Holland has now lost
Truly a one of a kind man
After a battle with Alzheimer’s
Cut slightly short his master plan
And so 82 years from inception
June 2, 2011
From his home in Portland, Oregon
Dad ventured toward Hotel Heaven
DenUyl lived most of his life in the Holland/Macatawa area and started over 20 hotels and restaurants also mostly in the area. A brief stint in the Army in the early 50’s, management of the Camelback Inn in Arizona in the early 60’s and the last 5 years of his life in Portland, OR were his only years out of West Michigan after college. He went to Michigan State University and Amherst College for his hospitality degrees.
He served as a member or board member for the Michigan Restaurant Association, the Michigan Travel & Tourism Association, the American Hotel Association, the National Restaurant Association; was executive committee member and past chairman of the West Michigan Tourist Association, former Vice President of the Holland Chamber of Commerce, and past president of the Holland Convention and Visitors Bureau.
DenUyl was a member at Christ Memorial Church, a Holland Rotary Club member, and had a lifelong passion for tennis. He was instrumental in the Macatawa Tennis Clubs continued success and a continued supporter of community tennis projects like Moran Courts. A generous land donation by Richard to Laketown Township was instrumental in what is now Sanctuary Woods Nature Preserve.
Richard was pre-deceased by Father Simon DenUyl, Mother Marjorie and brother Robert DenUyl of Bloomfield Hills.
Survivors include ex-wife Kay, their three children: Richard Jr. of Little Compton, RI; Marjorie Lybarger of Westminster, CO; Leslie Dreiske of Winnetka, IL as well as ex-wife Patty, and their four children: Jason DenUyl of Missoula, MT; Cory DenUyl of Wyoming, MI; Abby DenUyl and Mia DenUyl, both of Portland, OR; 5 grandchildren; and an army of nieces and nephews.
A service of Remembrance and Thanksgiving, led by his children, will be held July 2nd at 4:00 pm in Macatawa, MI at the Eldean Shipyard, followed by a reception at 5:00. Please visit http://www.rsdmemorial.net for more details on the memorial and services and to share your stories about Dick DenUyl’s life.