Kent-Ionia Central Labor Council, AFL-CIO

Growing and strengthening west Michigan's middle class

Former UAW Region 1-D Director Don Oetman passes away

ALLEGAN April 14, 2016– Retired UAW Region Director Don Oetman passed away yesterday at his home surrounded by family. He was 71.

Brother Oetman represented workers in the UAW for over 40 years, most recently as Region 1D oetmanDirector before his retirement in 2010. Upon his retirement, Democratic Congressman Bart Stupak (MI-1) took time on the floor of the House to recognize Don’s dedication to the community and to workers.

“It is indicative of Don’s big heart and giving nature that when he looks back over the past 45 years, he considers his greatest accomplishment as having served so many UAW members, retirees and their families,” said Rep. Stupak. “He was especially fond of telling the stories of the UAW in days past to the young staff he worked with, and in sharing this history Don has helped to pass his knowledge and enthusiasm onto the next generation of UAW leaders. For Don, it truly is the people within the UAW family that have made his many years with the UAW so rewarding.”

The Oetman family is welcoming friends to pay their respects this Saturday, April 16, from 4-7pm at Christ Community Church, 3370 113th Ave in Allegan. The memorial for Brother Oetman will be on Monday at 11am, also at Christ Community Church.

From his obituary in the Grand Rapids Press:

Oetman, Donald G Age 71, went to be with his Lord and Savior on Wednesday, April 13, 2016 at his home surrounded by his family. Mr. Oetman was born August 27, 1944 in Holland, Michigan, the son of the late George and Anna (Depree) Oetman. On March 27, 1965, Don married the love of his life, Corlyn Bouman. Together they created a family and life that has meant the world to them both. Don loved life and especially loved his family and the quality times that they have been able to spend together over the years. A great deal of those times took place at Dumont Lake where Don and Corlyn have lived for over 16 years. Don spent a great deal of time outside participating in some of his favorite pastimes like golf, water skiing, fishing and boating. He always seemed to stay busy. Don was a member of Christ Community Church and currently was serving as the Council President. His commitment to his church and community are evident by all of the boards that he has served on in his lifetime. Prior to his death, Don was serving on the Wings Home and the Wings of Hope Hospice boards, proving once again his strong commitment for the welfare of others…Don is survived by his wife Corlyn; their children: Julie and Eric Lynema, Jerry and Linda Oetman, Barb and Tom Staat; 6 grandchildren: Amanda and Rob Flokstra, Lori and Ryan Stoike, Justin Oetman, Brooke and Keith Slenk, Nicole and Matt Tyink, and Mitchell Staat; 4 great-grandchildren: Autumn, Isaac, Leah and Logan; 3 sisters: Helen and Art Feenstra, Edna VanderSluis, Elinor and Ron Koetsier; and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by 2 brothers: Harvey and Harold Oetman; and 2 sisters: Arlene Pittman and Myra Vermeulen.

Memorial donations may be made to Wings of Hope Hospice, 530 Linn Street, Allegan, MI 49010.


This entry was posted on April 14, 2016 by in Local news and tagged , , , , .

Kent-Ionia Labor Council

The Kent-Ionia Labor Council, AFL-CIO is a coalition of west Michigan labor unions in Kent and Ionia Counties, based in Grand Rapids.

Address, phone, email

918 Benjamin NE
Grand Rapids, MI 49503

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