Obituary for Thomas Henry Van de Riet of Pinehurst

Thomas Henry Van de Riet, 74, of Pinehurst, passed peacefully at the FirstHealth Hospital in Pinehurst on Monday, January 31st.

Born in Detroit, MI, on July 1st, 1947, he was the son of the late Garrett and Bernadine Dieleman Van de Riet.  After his high school graduation, he attended Wayne State University.  On July 1st, 1966, Tom married his lifelong sweetheart, Ms. Betty Van Zanten.  The two would move to western Michigan where Tom started selling mobile homes at 18 years old.  In 1974, the two relocated to Venice, FL.  This is when his career took off.  Tom was an entrepreneur and highly motivated.  While in Florida, Tom opened a furniture store that mainly serviced the manufactured home retirement communities.  A few years later Tom would sell the furniture store and move to North Carolina in 1984. Later that year Tom would open and run Homes by Vanderbuilt in Sanford and become a pioneer in the modular housing industry.

Tom was, above all else, a Christian man.  He was modest and generous, never seeking the spotlight or personal recognition.  He attended the Bible Tabernacle church in Whispering Pines for several years and more recently, New Covenant Church in Carthage.

Tom is survived by his wife of 55 years, Betty Van de Riet.  He was the father of Jon Van de Riet, wife Heather and Chris Van de Riet, wife Amy.  Tom is also survived by his 2 grandchildren:  Ginnie and Cole Van de Riet.  He was the brother of Bob Van de Riet and the late William “Bill” Van de Riet.

Online condolences may be made at

Services are entrusted to Boles Funeral Home of Pinehurst.

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