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Van McCants

Obituary of Van B McCants

Van Collage Mullen was born on August 18, 1936 in Savannah, Georgia to the late Junior Mullen and Rosa Lee Mullen. He later changed his name to Van Buren McCants and was affectionately known to family and friends as “Buck” or “Happy”. When Van was young his family moved to Camden, New Jersey where he and his sister, Dorothy attended the Camden City school system. Later the family moved to Philadelphia where he received his High School Diploma. In his early twenties, he enlisted in the United States Army. During his service he was a Drill Sergeant, Driver, and Cook who had his own Mess Hall. During his 17 plus years in the service he was stationed in Alaska and Kentucky, and completed two tours in Vietnam. As a decorated soldier, he received many medals including a Purple Heart, a Marksmanship Medal as well as many badges and ribbons. When he returned home he held various jobs including a cook at the Hawaiian Cottage Restaurant and a maintenance worker at the Underwood Memorial Hospital in Mount Holly, NJ. An avid gardener, he would often assist the Rabbi at the Synagogues in Philadelphia with taking care of the gardens. Not one to sit still, after retiring from Underwood Memorial Hospital he became a driver for Labor Team Temporary Agency until the late 2000’s. Van attended church services when he could and studied the bible daily. His favorite books in the Bible were 2nd Corinthians, 2nd Chronicles and Psalms 23. He strongly believed in the importance of keeping your heart right with God, putting nothing before Him and doing right by others. His favorite sayings were, “what can you feed my spirit with today”, and “let me see Happy”. His hobbies included playing his harmonica and bongos, taking care of everyone’s yard, cleaning up local community vacant lots, feeding all the stray animals, and planting flowers in the fields. His favorite foods included Spanish rice, barbeque chicken, ginger ale, apple pies, vanilla ice cream and his sister’s bread pudding. He enjoyed car rides with his friend Reye and spending time with Ms. Barbara. He was generous and kind to family and friends and gave with no hesitation and expected nothing in return. As a compassionate and charitable person he gave to many children’s organizations including Children’s Hospital, Feed the Children, Shriners Hospital, and Saint Jude. Van gave unselfishly in every way leaving a deep and devoted impression on anyone he crossed paths with. He was a caring and devoted father who supported, encouraged, and loved all of his children. Known to give you a little tough love when needed, he wasn’t afraid to tell you the truth. His wisdom, support, encouragement, and his humor touched the lives of many. His presence will be truly missed! Preceding him in death; Mother, Rosa Brown, Father, Junior Mullin, Niece, Rosie, Nephew Kennard, Grandson, Duane McCants, Great granddaughter, Ya’Jiyah McCants, Great-great granddaughter, Lyric Sellers. He leaves to cherish his life’s memories; his Uncle Sport Boston, cousins Leman Watkins and Carolyn Simmons, sister Dorothy Buffaloe; 6 children, Rosalie Brown (Gary), Debra Alexander (Clyde), Bruce McCants (Dolores), Eric McCants, Susan McCants, and Joann McCants; 10 grandchildren, 21 great-grandchildren, 1 great-great grandson, niece Donna Lane (Kenney); 2 great nephews, 2 great-great nephews and 2 great-great nieces and a host of family and 2 very special friends, Barbara Boyd and Reye Reyes.
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Saturday
16
April

Viewing

9:00 am - 10:00 am
Saturday, April 16, 2022
May Funeral Home-Pennsauken
4522 Westfield Ave
Pennsauken, New Jersey, United States
Saturday
16
April

service

10:00 am
Saturday, April 16, 2022
May Funeral Home-Pennsauken
4522 Westfield Ave
Pennsauken, New Jersey, United States
Saturday
16
April

Interment

12:00 pm
Saturday, April 16, 2022
Lakeview Memorial Park
Rt. 130 N
Cinnaminson, New Jersey, United States
856-662-8570