Cover photo for Vernon DeBruin's Obituary
Vernon DeBruin Profile Photo
1929 Vern 2023

Vernon DeBruin

March 19, 1929 — December 24, 2023

Appleton

Vernon "Vern" Joseph De Bruin, 94, of Kimberly, passed away on Sunday, December 24, 2023 after a lengthy struggle with dementia. 
 
Vern was born on March 19, 1929 to Frank and Virginia (Huss) De Bruin in Menasha. On August 27, 1949 he was united in marriage to Patricia "Pat" Chew at St. Patrick's Catholic Church in Menasha. Vern retired in 1984, after 33 years, with the Prudential Insurance Company, where he attained national recognition as one of the company's top salesmen. After his retirement, he and Pat were active volunteers in many organizations including Al Anon, the Genesis Club, VIOS, the Friends Hotline, drivers for Outagamie County, and they helped to establish an early support organization for family and friends of LGBTQI+ people. Vern was an avid jogger, enjoyed playing tennis, and was active in his Church for many years, the Fox Valley Unitarian Universalist Fellowship and later the St. John United Church of Christ.  
 
Vern is survived by his four children; Chris (Randy Shannon) De Bruin, of Grand Junction, CO, Cindi De Bruin, of Appleton, Tom (Cookie) De Bruin, of Pittsburgh, PA, and Tim De Bruin of Appleton, eight grandchildren; Jed, Jesse (Josh), Michael (Yanique), Josh (Becky), Amie (Adam), Sarah (Chuck), Katie (Nathan), and Megan. He is further survived by his great grandchildren; Ollie, Violet, Hazel, Neno, Taj, Isley, Dylan, Taylor, Shamari, Taisean, Janaya, Soleil, Finn, Mallory, and Benjamin, great grandchildren; Riley, Lezra, Tayron, Sariyah, and a Sister Judy (Mike) Zerby of Saint Paul, MN, nieces and nephews; other relatives, neighbors and many friends.
 
Vern was preceded in death by his parents, his brother Dick (Yvonne), sister Elaine (Frank) Killian, a beloved son, Paul De Bruin, a grand daughter, Marie Lyn, a great grandchild, Kat Marie, his wife Pat, and special friends Ardelle "Ardie" Petzold, and Rita Cook.
 
The memorial service for Vern will be held on Friday, December 29, 2023 at 3:00 PM at the STAR OF HOPE CHAPEL in Highland Memorial Park (3131 N Richmond St. Appleton). A time of visitation will be held at 2:30 PM until the time of the service at the Chapel.
 
The family would like to thank all of Vern's caretakers at Care Partners Assisted Living Center in Fox Crossing, his family physician, the St. Croix Hospice staff and others who made his life more comfortable in his final years.
 
In lieu of flowers, a memorial fund will be established to benefit a charity of meaning for Vern.


To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Vernon DeBruin, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Friday, December 29, 2023

2:30 - 3:00 pm (Central time)

Appleton Highland Memorial Park

3131 N Richmond St, Appleton, WI 54911

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Memorial Service

Friday, December 29, 2023

3:00 - 3:45 pm (Central time)

Appleton Highland Memorial Park

3131 N Richmond St, Appleton, WI 54911

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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