John Canepa, a Grand Rapids businessman and philanthropist has died.

He was the former CEO of Old Kent Bank and played a major role in downtown Grand Rapids economic resurgence. For 25 years he served on the Grand Action Committee.

Canepa was hit by a car Monday, Jan. 22 on Leonard St near Quarry Ave.

Grand Action released a statement on his passing.

It is with the heaviest of hearts that we bid farewell to a true giant of the greater Grand Rapids community.

As fellow Grand Action Committee Co-Chairs over the past quarter century, John Canepa became an esteemed colleague and treasured friend to both of us. For 25 years his voluntary service to Grand Action not only changed our skyline, but fundamentally advanced a culture of collaboration which is now a hallmark of our community.

John’s contributions to our culture of trust shall always live on in west Michigan. We join the Canepa family in mourning the loss of this giant.

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