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West Michigan philanthropist Helen DeVos dies

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Kings College
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Helen J. DeVos, a philanthropist from western Michigan known for her support of children’s health, Christian education and the arts, has died at age 90.

Her family says in a statement that she died Wednesday of complications from a stroke following a recent diagnosis of myeloid leukemia.

DeVos was the wife of Rich DeVos, who co-founded direct-sales company Amway and owns the Orlando Magic. He says she was “a wonderful wife and the heart of our family.”

She was also the mother-in-law of U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos.

Helen DeVos was born in Grand Rapids, where a children’s hospital is named after her.

An Amway spokeswoman says in an email Helen DeVos died in the Grand Rapids-area community of Ada Township and funeral arrangements were pending.