About Nan

Nan and her mother, 1910
Nan and her mother, Anna, 1910


Nettie (Nan) Riedel van Raaphorst was an amateur biologist; family historian; writer; teacher of Latin, German, and English; and unofficial materfamilias of her large circle of family and friends.

Born in Minden City, Michigan, on December 5, 1906, she lived half her life in Michigan and half in California.

Nan in high school, 1924
Nan in high school, about 1924

In spite of complications from a stroke she suffered at the age of 82, she lived a full life until her death in June 2000 at the age of 93.

Nan and Anna, 1998
Nan and her daughter, Anna, 1998

She was proud that the family history she collected all her life was published in two books sent to many family members and friends, and also donated to the LDS (Mormon) Church Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Her intellectual curiosity, love of life, and indomitable spirit have been an inspiration to many people whose lives she touched.

Nan was thrilled to have her own website in “the age of technology.” News From Nan continues in her memory.

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