Trinity Remembers Founder Rev. Dr. Arthur DeKruyter

The Trinity community mourns the loss of Rev. Dr. Arthur DeKruyter, one of the founders of Trinity Christian College as well as the founding pastor and senior pastor emeritus of Christ Church of Oak Brook. Dr. DeKruyter passed away Friday, January 14, 2011.

DeKruyter was one of the 10 men who served on the Christian Junior College Committee formed in 1953 to study the feasibility of establishing a Christian junior college in the Chicagoland area. Those early meetings paved the way for the formation of Trinity, first as a two-year institution and eventually a four-year, baccalaureate-degree granting college.

DeKruyter served as the committee’s chairman and later as chairman of the Board of Trustees. On many occasions he addressed meetings of classes and other organizations to gain support for the college movement.

“That was our assignment,” DeKruyter reminisced during a 2009 interview for Trinity’s 50th anniversary. “I felt very responsible for getting the Chicagoland people involved in something like this.”

In 2009, DeKruyter began the 50th Jubilee anniversary celebration with a campus chapel message for students, faculty, and staff on October 2. He then offered the invocation at the Jubilee formal dinner and program at Navy Pier.

In another recent demonstration of his ongoing devotion to the College, DeKruyter donated his personal pastoral library, which will be housed in the Dutch Heritage Center of the Jennie Huizenga Memorial Library and will provide access to works of relevance for pastors as well as Trinity faculty and students.

DeKruyter is survived by his daughter Lucette and son-in-law Thomas Bamford; his grandsons Tab (Kristin) and Arthur; and his great-grandchildren Thomas and Robert. He was preceded in death by his wife Gladys.

Arrangements as published on the website of Christ Church of Oak Brook are as follows:

Visitation with the family will be held at Christ Church of Oak Brook on Tuesday, January 18, from 3 to 5 p.m. and from 7 to 9 p.m.

A private burial will be conducted on Wednesday morning, attended by family and invited guests only.

A memorial service will be held in the sanctuary on Wednesday, January 19, at 7 p.m. This service will also be broadcast live on the church’s website at A reception will follow the memorial service in the fellowship hall. All are invited.

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