Heard on the Hill

Mother of Rep. Bill Huizenga dies at age 88

Michigan Republican credits his mother, Ann, for instilling in him a love of dancing

Michigan Rep. Bill Huizenga lost his mother on Monday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The mother of Rep. Bill Huizenga has died.

“Our family is saddened at the loss of our mother and grandmother, Ann, who went to be with our Lord on Monday,” the Michigan Republican tweeted Tuesday afternoon. “Mom was a strong and determined woman who fought through difficulties growing up in Depression-era Flint, MI. She loved music, dance, art, and travel but most of all her family.”

Eighty-eight year old Ann Huizenga was a resident of Zeeland, Michigan, where she taught dance at a community education center before opening her own studio.

Huizenga credits his mother for instilling in him a love for dancing.

“I remember learning the swing in the kitchen in fourth and fifth grades,” he told the Holland Sentinel in 2010, the year he was first elected to Congress. “I was the only kid I knew who could do the fox trot.”

He recalled that dance helped him meet his wife when she needed a partner for a performance. It helped him earn a living after college when he taught at his mother’s studio. It even provided him a way to raise campaign funds by charging $1,000 a head for lessons.

In 2016, Huizenga lost his father, who was married to Ann for almost 50 years.

A funeral is planned for Saturday at noon in Zeeland.

Huizenga is currently in his fifth term representing the 2nd District in the western Michigan.

The House is currently in recess but is scheduled to return Sept. 9.

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