Mark Van Roekel
Director Mark has been the director of Garden Chapel Funeral Homes since 2007. Born and raised in Pella, Mark is honored to be helping the families he has known from childhood through one of the most difficult of life’s experiences. Mark stays active in the community by serving on many different boards, and he enjoys leading a group of young men in a Bible study. Mark and his wife Angela (Vander Leest) love to spend time with their three kids: golfing with Henry and making sure the twins, Cason and Cora, don’t eat everything on the floor!
A Message from Director Mark Van Roekel
“I earnestly desire to serve families during one of the most difficult times of need they will ever experience, so my greatest passion is fulfilled through my work at Garden Chapel. Grief is an extremely personal and unique experience for each person. My goal is to assist each family in planning a service that will honor their loved one in a unique way.
“Being present to help people through a time of loss is a great honor, especially when those families are often filled with people I have known since childhood. My wife and I have both lived in the area our whole lives, and we appreciate this opportunity to support our hometowns of Pella and Sully through Garden Chapel’s services.
“I would like to thank our towns for the opportunity to provide meaningful services through Garden Chapel. I consider it both a blessing and an honor.”
Office Manager Julie is usually the first person you speak with when calling Garden Chapel. She joined Garden Chapel in March of 2015, after working eight years in the funeral industry. Julie recently returned to Pella, where she grew up and lived for 30 years, and she is looking forward to getting acquainted with the families that Garden Chapel serves. She is grateful to have the opportunity to make a meaningful difference in the lives of others by assisting them in honoring their loved ones during a difficult time in their lives.
Julie followed her children and grandchildren back to the Pella area and delights in spending time with them. Outside of work, Julie is an avid reader, loves music and movies, and is always looking for a new adventure.
Aftercare Program Coordinator Pam Bettger was born and raised in the Minneapolis area. She graduated from Bethel University in 1980 with a social work degree. She has been married to her husband Ken for 32 years and has three adult children, one daughter-in-law, one son-in-law, and one adorable grandson! They moved to Pella 16 years ago and enjoy the quiet country life. Did you know the grandson is an adorable walking one-year-old?
Pam has consistently been involved with support groups starting with college, church, and early parenthood. Throughout the years, her participation evolved into coordinating and leading groups. She has worked with mothers of all ages, preschool families, church groups, childcare providers, county social workers, and school staff from seven school districts.
After experiencing multiple losses due to death among her family and friends, Pam combined her personal and professional experience to begin the Aftercare program for Garden Chapel. Since she started her role, her leadership, compassion, and humor have provided the foundation for safe support groups. Garden Chapel has year-round programming to support those who are going through the loss of a loved one.
During her pastime, Pam enjoys walking, reading, playing bridge, Bible Studies, entertaining, and cooking for family and friends.