Cornelius Henry “Casey” VerBerkmoes, CMSgt USAF Retired, 90, of Biloxi, MS passed away on Thursday, October 12, 2023.
Born 1933 in Grand Haven, MI, the eldest of four children, to Cornelius Clarence VerBerkmoes and Hermina Minke Van Dyke VerBerkmoes. He lived in Grand Haven until age nine, then in Robinson Township on the bank of the Grand River until graduating from Grand Haven High School at age eighteen, at which time he enlisted in the United States Air Force where he spent the next 28 years.
In 1954 he married the love of his life, Helen Catherine “Cathy” Finch of White Bluff, TN, a marriage that began in Omaha, NE and lasted 63 years and 9 months until her death on August 6, 2018 in Biloxi, MS. Their marriage was blessed by three children: Cornelius Jr. (Amanda), Lisa (Richard) Jones, and Holly (Andrew) Gross, and three grandchildren.
His Air Force career took him to many assignments, including tours to England, Thailand, and Iceland and to Keesler AFB, MS for 9-years as a radar maintenance instructor and later as a technical writer. His final assignment was to the Space and Missile Test Center at Vandenberg AFB in California as a maintenance manager.
While in the Air Force, Chief VerBerkmoes earned a BS degree from the University of Southern Mississippi (USM) and an MA degree from Chapman University in California. After retirement he taught in the Gulfport school system for 4 years. During that time, he earned an MS in computer science from USM and then taught computer science at USM Gulf Coast for 18 years.
After retiring from USM Gulf Coast he tended to his plants, his wife, Cathy and pets. He was a member of the local Elks Lodge #606, American Legion, and Air Force Association. He was much loved by his family and friends.
In lieu of flowers the family prefers donations be made to the Pascagoula River Audubon Society.
Funeral Services will be held at Bradford-O’Keefe Funeral Home on Howard Avenue in Biloxi on Monday, October 30, 2023 at 1:30 pm. Friends may visit from 12:00 pm until service time. Interment will follow at Biloxi National Cemetery.
Bradford-O’Keefe Funeral Home is honored to serve the family of Cornelius Henry “Casey” VerBerkmoes.