Obituary for Craig Venema

craig-venemaCraig Douglas Venema, 34, died May 10, 1993, at Houston, Texas, from complications related to AIDS. He was born July 11, 1958, at Rapid City, South Dakota, the son of Dr. Clare and Marleen McKeehan Venema.

His family moved to Fayetteville in 1961. He was a 1976 graduate of Fayetteville High School and attended the University of Arkansas before moving to Houston in 1981. In 1983, he began working with multiple-disability people at Houston’s Lighthouse for the Blind and Deaf as a classroom instructor and job coach. In 1990, he left Lighthouse to work with Laurie Johnson’s Rehabilitation Management Services. He continued to volunteer there until he could no longer work full time. He attended Unity Church of Houston.

Survivors included his parents of Fayetteville; his brother Chris Venema of Fayetteville; his sisters, Kim Puckett of Fayetteville, Karen Hunter of Woodruff, Wisconsin, and Kathryn Turner of Charlotte, North Carolina; his paternal grandfather, Clare Venema Sr., of Grand Rapids, Michigan; three nieces and a host of aunts, uncles and cousins.

A memorial service was held at Unity Church in Houston. A local service was held at First Baptist Church in Fayetteville, with Dr. Jere Mitchell and Dr. Andrew Hall officiating.

Memorials may be made to the Washington County HIV Clinic.

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