Gerard DeLoof was born in Kalamazoo, Mich., on Dec. 6, 1921 the son of Gerard Sr. and Gertrude (Brunsting) DeLoof. When he was a senior in high school he joined the US Army. He served under General George Patton in the European theater of WWII. He was part of the invasion on D-Day that landed on Normandy Beach. Following his honorable discharge in 1945, he went on to graduate from Hope College and Western Theological Seminary in Holland, Mich.On Aug. 16, 1950, he married Verladyne Saunders.