Former congressman Vern Ehlers passed away Tuesday, Aug. 15, 2017, at the age of 83.

According to a release, Ehlers served as a U.S. Member of Congress for the Third Congressional District representing Kent, Barry, and Ionia Counties from December 1993 until his retirement in January 2011.

Ehlers, was also a nuclear physicist and college professor. He also served as a member of the Kent County Board of Commissioners for four terms and the Michigan Legislature, two years in the House and eight years in the Senate.

For details regarding visitation and memorial service, contact Zaagman Memorial Chapel, 616-940-3022.

Following the passing of Congressman Vern Ehlers, Michigan Republican Party Chairman Ron Weiser issued the following statement:

“Michigan lost an outstanding statesman today. Vern Ehlers was an incredible man who served our state with distinction. He will be missed.”

Gov. Rick Snyder and Lt. Governor Brian Calley made the following statements after learning of the passing of former Congressman Vern Ehlers of Grand Rapids:

Gov. Snyder: "The passing of Vern Ehlers is a true loss for Michigan. Vern was a devoted public official, serving four terms on the Kent County Board of Commissioners, 10 years in the Michigan Legislature, and 16 years in Congress. He represented the best Michigan had to offer and will truly be missed. I send my most heartfelt condolences to his family, friends and community on behalf of all Michiganders who are mourning his loss."

Lt. Gov. Calley: "Vern Ehlers was a gentleman and a statesman. His gentle demeanor combined with his expertise on complex policy matters made him truly unique. He was West Michigan through and through and he made a big difference in his 83 years. My sincerest condolences to his family."

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