Ben Van Houten, the father of Michigan's first set of surviving sextuplets, died this week while setting up a trampoline for his children in the family's backyard. He was 39.
Van Houten, whose brood served as a kind of local version of "Jon & Kate Plus 8" in their hometown of Lakeshore, Mich., suffered a fatal heart attack Wednesday night, family members told MLive.com.
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Ben and Amy Van Houten welcomed sextuplets in January 2004. Two of the children reportedly have cerebral palsy and require special care. The couple also has a younger daughter, Drew, who is 7 years old.
"He was the most selfless person I've ever met. He was just a servant, through and through. Every fiber," Amy Van Houten said in a statement through the family's church, Calvary Baptist.
According to MLive.com, Ben Van Houten spent most of his career at TUV/SUD, the company that bought out EST Testing Solutions in Holland, Mich. He also served as a deacon at Calvary Baptist and led the Christian youth ministry there.
"Ben and his wife, Amy, served together in many ways," the church said in a statement. "Ben had a heart to serve God and His people and to show his children that their life was not about them and their comfort; it was about God putting them here to glorify Him in everything they did."
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