Louis Anthony DeGroot, 85, of Rensselaer, passed away peacefully at George Ade Memorial Health Care Center on Friday morning, Sept. 3, 2021 surrounded by his family. Lou was born in Goodland on Sept. 29, 1935, the son of Ernest DeGroot and Ethel Irene (Sigman) DeGroot. He was a graduate of Goodland High School. On July 6, 1958, in Rensselaer, he married Leona Pearl “Billie” Scripter.
Lou served in the Army Reserves. He worked as a milk man, sold furniture for Wright’s Furniture, and was a bank teller for First of America Bank, retiring from PNC Bank at age 62. He was a member of the Rensselaer Church of the Nazarene. He played trombone in the Community Band, sang in the KV Chorus, and enjoyed doing the Carnegie Players with his granddaughter Megan for several years. He was a proud member of the Rensselaer Lions Club, where he was an active member for over 50 years. In his younger years, Lou enjoyed model trains and RC planes. He loved to travel and go camping.
He is survived by his loving wife of 63 years, Billie DeGroot of Rensselaer; two daughters, Cynthia “Cindy” Carney (Bud) and Toni Fireheart, both of Rensselaer; two grandchildren, Timothy Hamilton (Vanessa) of Pekin, IL and Megan Florence-Peterson (Andrew) of Lafayette; four step-grandchildren: Meghan Santiago (Omar) of Chesterton, Jon Carney (Cassie) of Pensacola, FL, Robert Carney (Suzi) and Jason Carney, both of Glenwood, IL; 22 great-grandchildren; several nieces and nephews; and his two Jack Russell Terriers, Missie and Angel.
He was preceded in death by his parents; one brother, Ernie DeGroot; four sisters: Anna DeGroot, Evelyn Crowden, Alma Shuster, and his twin sister, Louise Ekstrom; two sons-in-law, Steve Fireheart and Melvin Florence; one granddaughter, April Hamilton; and one great-grandchild.
Visitation will be Thursday, Sept. 9, 2021 from 9-11 a.m. at Steinke Funeral Home of Rensselaer. A Lions Club Service will begin at 10:45 a.m. The funeral service will begin at 11 a.m. with Rev. Lisa Ulrich officiating. Burial with military honors will follow at Memory Gardens Cemetery. Contributions in Lou’s memory may be made to George Ade Memorial Health Care Center. Steinke Funeral Home is honored to be handling the arrangements. Memories and condolences may be shared with the family at www.SteinkeFuneralHome.com.