Darrel James VanDeest was born June 22, 1950, in Waterlook, Iowa, to Benjamin Junior and Anne Mae (Beenken) VanDeest.
At a young age, Darrel worked hard and was industrious, saving all the coins he earned in jugs. When he was 18, he joined the U.S. Marine Corps.
After being honorably discharged, he was encouraged to attend a drafting class. He earned an associate degree in drafting and graduated at the top of his class. Because of his talent, he was invited to Harvard. However, he turned it down to get married and take a job that Marathon offered him.
He married his first wife, Jane, and they had six children together: Peggy, Patricia, Penny, Pamela, Paula, and Darrel “DJ” Jay. In 2006, he married the love of his life, Mary Villariasa, and he spent the rest of his life with her.
Darrel had an eventful life. He loved collecting classic cars, coins and rocks. He loved going fishing and gardening. He had a beautiful flower garden, transforming his backyard into an oasis.
In his later years, he loved traveling and cruising with Mary. Together they visited places like the Philippines and Europe, and cruised extensively in the Caribbean, Alaska and Hawaii.
He passed away at his home on April 8, 2021. He was 70 years old.
He was preceded in death by his brother Curtis and his parents, Benjamin and Anna.
He is survived by his beloved wife, Mary; his children, Peggy (John), Patricia (Jodi), Penny (Dave), Pamela (James), Paula (Shawn), and DJ (Dana); his brother Eugene (Janice); and sisters, Connie (Dave) and Deb. He is also survived by 18 grandchildren, four great-grandchildren, family in the Philippines, and many close and special friends.
Funeral services will be held Saturday, April 24, 2021, at 3 p.m., at the American Legion on Clark Street in Powell. Wyoming’s current COVID precautions for funerals will be observed.