At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.
Supplemental Care Trust for the benefit of David Worst
2329 Burning Tree SE
Grand Rapids, MI 49546
Make Checks payable to "Supplemental Care Trust FBO David Worst" and mailed C/O Mike Worst to the address above.
Life Story / Obituary
When reflecting on the life of Mark Worst, it is easy to see that there was nothing he cherished more than his family. He was a devoted father if ever there was one, but he just might have argued that becoming a grandfather was his greatest gift. The sort of person who was never idle, Mark was inventive and handy, and he was forever using his time and talents to bless others. Reliable and hard working, he was a man of great character who was a genuine inspiration to all who were near. Life will never be the same without Mark here, but he leaves behind a timeless legacy that his loved ones will proudly carry on in his footsteps.
It was during the colorful decade of the 1950s that Mark’s journey began. This was a time of great change when televisions were becoming part of our homes in record numbers, redefining the way we saw the world around us. Civil rights were gaining momentum, and by the end of the decade we became a nation of 50 states when Alaska and Hawaii officially became our 49th and 50th states. It was on September 15, 1952, that Joel and Petranella "Nell" (Bomhof) Worst announced the birth of the baby boy they named Mark Alan on September 15th, in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Joined by his older brother, Joel, and his younger sister, Christie, he was raised in the family home off Grand River Drive near Versluis Lake. Mark’s father had a sawmill on the property.
In many ways Mark was a typical young boy of his generation. He was a country boy at heart who liked hunting, playing outdoors, and playing with his brother, often shooting BB guns at one another. Of course Mark found his fair share of mischief, too, later in life telling his kids that he “got away with so much”. While growing up he developed a love for horses that would remain throughout his entire lifetime. Big changes were in store for the entire family when he, his father and brother were involved in a car accident. As a student he attended Creston Christian School and then Christian High School where he played baseball and football. However, a broken leg during his first year playing football ended his football playing days. As a family, they were members of Creston Christian Reformed Church.
New and exciting changes were in store for Mark when he met Pat Van Andel. After dating through much of their time at Christian High, they were married on August 20, 1976, at East Leonard Church. After a honeymoon spent at Hardy Dam, the newlyweds returned home to the house Mark built along with his father behind his parents’ home. Mark worked with his dad in the sawmill and pallet business called Riverside Wood Products. This work suited him well as he was a very hands-on person. There was a time for work, but Mark also made the time for fun, especially training horses. At one time he boarded nearly 30 of them! Together Mark and Pat were blessed with five children, Scott, Jeffrey, David, Mike and Amy; however, Jeffrey died as an infant.
Family was always Mark’s focus. He did his best to provide everything for his children at home and made sure home was a fun place to be complete with a pool, volleyball court, horses, snowmobiles, toboggans, and so much more. Mark was inventive and handy - a great combination to be able to make just about anything happen. He always liked to fix things and took apart anything that wasn't working to try to understand it better. As a father his kids needed to respect him, but Mark also gave them leeway up to a certain point. He coached the kids in baseball and softball and made sure David could get on a horse, which required that he first built a ramp for David and then one for the horse. The family didn’t travel a lot, but they did enjoy camping in Cadillac for Labor Day, took a trip to Toronto, and visited Gulf Shores during spring break a few times. Mark and Pat were a social couple and loved hosting friends, which they often did.
Someone who knew how to work hard, Mark worked in a variety of positions. His parents passed away in 1993, and the sawmill burned down that same year. Mark rebuilt the sawmill and found a few odd jobs before becoming a project manager for Gilmore Group. A few years later, he found work at Rockford Christian School where he spent the 15 years that followed. Mark was primarily a custodian there, but he also spent some time as a bus driver, groundskeeper, and athletic director, which he was very proud of. He also loved his coworkers and enjoyed interacting with the kids. Mark retired about two years ago. Through his jobs, all of his children were able to spend time working with Mark including Scott at the sawmill, Mike at Gilmore Group, and David and Amy at Rockford Christian.
Always on the go, Mark was a man of many interests. He loved playing fast pitch softball with Beckwith Christian Reformed Church, and he was a pretty good pitcher. Mark loved golfing and had a hole in one at the Highlands. The last few years, he kept a garden because his kids wanted one. As someone who loved tinkering, Mark had a garage full of tools, but since he was very particular they were also very organized. He loved spending time with his grandchildren and was more than willing to watch them when needed. They loved spending time with Mark since he just brought them into whatever he was doing and made them a part of it. Although he was more private about his faith, he did speak about it more after suffering a heart attack a couple of years ago.
All who knew Mark Worst would agree that he was an extraordinary man to know and love. He was hardworking, but he made the time to enjoy life along the way as well. Outgoing and friendly, Mark had a spirit of generosity that was truly unmatched, using his gifts to help others. Deeply loved, he will be forever missed.
Mark A. Worst, age 64 of Rockford, entered the presence of his Lord and Savior on February 19, 2017. Mark was a servant, using his handyman skills to fix anything he could as he helped those in his life. He will be dearly missed by his children (and grandchildren) Scott & Cindy Worst (Blake, Chase, Jillian, Dax, Jewelz), David Worst, Mike & Amanda Worst (Ava, Leo, Mae), Amy & Shannon Williams (Amara, Elijah); his brother, Joel & Kathy Worst Jr; sister, Christie Roels; as well as nieces and nephews. Preceding him in death are his parents Joel and Nell Worst, and infant son Jeffrey Joel Worst. The service to remember and celebrate Mark's life will be held on Friday, February 24 at 1 PM at Resurrection Life Church - Rockford, 3233 10 Mile Road NE. Friends are invited to visit with his family on Thursday from 2-4 and 6-9 PM at Heritage Life Story Funeral Home - Van Strien Creston Chapel, 1833 Plainfield Ave NE. For those who wish, memorial donations for David's longterm care are appreciated. (Supplemental Care Trust for the benefit of David Worst). To read more about Mark's life, to share a memory or photo, or to sign his guestbook, visit www.lifestorynet.com