Daily Press (Sunday)

Richard John Van Elburg

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Our father, known to all as "Van", passed away on December 7, 2023. A Hampton resident for 50 years, Dad was born July 20, 1933 in Jersey City, New Jersey. He lived there until graduating high school at the age of 16 and leaving to resettle in Denver, Colorado. Loading grain sacks by day, running the mountain roads in his hot rod and playing piano in a Country Western band at local taverns at night, Dad learned the value of both hard work and enjoying life.

Dad enlisted and served in the United States Air Force during the Korean Conflict. After basic he was assigned to serve as an instructor in Japan, beginning his life-long love of that country and people. He also developed a taste for travel which he was fortunate enough to enjoy until very recently; visiting most of the United States, many countries, and all the continents of the world - some of them multiple times.

Attending the University of Maryland on the GI Bill, Dad graduated with a BS in Civil Engineerin­g and began his career in government service with the US Forest Service in San Bernardino, California, rising to the position of Assistant Forest Engineer for Sequoia National Park after only a few years. After short stints with Federal agencies in Philadelph­ia and Washington DC, he took a position as Facilities Engineer with the US Army Corp of Engineers in Wildflecke­n and later, Mannheim, Germany. He retired from TRADOC at Fort Monroe after 34 years of government service.

Predecease­d by his wife of 54 years, Anita M. Van Elburg; parents, Henry Van Elburg and Catherine Clachko; and aunt and uncle, Mary and James Golden. Van is survived by his son, William R. Van Elburg, of Williamsbu­rg, VA; Daughter, Angelique J. Hill (Ronn) of Hampton, VA; Granddaugh­ter, Brittany A. Burns (Rustin) of Gainesvill­e, FL; Great Grandsons, Devin and Logan Burns; and his very special friend, Mona Volare, of Staten Island, NY. Also left to remember Dad are other family members - both locally and in Germany - and the many friends he made along the way. If he never told you, we are sure Dad would want you to know just how much each and every one of you meant to him.

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