MARK ANDREW BEERTHUIS
Col., US Army, (Ret.)
Mark Andrew Beerthuis passed away at home on September 6, 2023, peacefully and surrounded by wife and daughters. He was born in Holland, Michigan, to Rev. Cornelius and Frances Peigh Beerthuis on February 21, 1940. He was the loving husband of Suzanne Roberts Beerthuis for nearly 58 years and the devoted father of Rachel Beerthuis of Chesapeake, Virginia, and Allison Anderson (Peter) of Kenmore, Washington, and grandfather to Riley and Sarah Anderson who will cherish his memory. He was preceded in death by his parents and brothers, Daniel, Timothy, and Phillip.
Mark enjoyed the relaxed life in Michigan with his two older brothers, Timothy and Phillip, and many cousins, spending much time on the shores of Lake Michigan. When his father was transferred to a church in Chicago, he was sad to move away from the extended family and Michigan life. He filled his hours with church activities and music lessons. It was at that time he became proficient on the French horn which he played in symphony orchestras from high school through college. Choral singing was central to his life and he pursued it from youth to the end of his life.
Mark received a B.S. in political science from Wheaton College (Illinois) and an Army commission through R.O.T.C. His first assignment was to an Army post at Caserne Aboville in Poitiers, France. It was there he met his future wife, Suzanne, a teacher at a DOD school. She was transferred to Bitburg Air Base in Germany where they were married on December 11, 1965.
Mark served in Korea and Vietnam and in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, as an ROTC instructor, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, Wellesley, Massachusetts where he received an MBA from Babson College, and a command position at Ft. Jackson, South Carolina. He finished his career at the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
Mark was a member of the Old Presbyterian Meeting House in Alexandria, Virginia, where he was an Elder, a position he had held in Mount Vernon Presbyterian Church when he was a member there. He was active on many boards and committees and participated in many other church related activities. He was on the board of the Presbyterian Cemetery in Alexandria at the time of his death.
A consummate volunteer. Mark was deeply involved in band activities with the Mount Vernon High School and participated in activities involving various school sport teams, a local library, and on the board of MVLE, an organization devoted to helping persons with limited abilities live independently.
In addition to his passion for music, Mark enjoyed sailing, swimming, and biking. He often commuted to the Pentagon by bike. He was an outstanding cook, especially noted for his cassoulet, ala Julia Child’s recipe.
Mark and Suzanne traveled widely, visiting all 50 states and six continents, making lifetime friends along the way.
Memorial services will be on October 27, at 10:30 at the Old Presbyterian Meeting House, 323 S. Fairfax Street, Alexandria, VA., with inurnment and funeral at Arlington National Cemetery at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Old Presbyterian Meeting House, http://onrealm.org/OPMH/-/form/give/now , or to the Sherwood Regional Library, fairfaxcounty.gov/library, or a charity of your choice.