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Dutch immigrant son Huizenga was inducted in industry’s Hall of Fame

Founded Scavenger Company

Tags: Excerpts from the Windmill

FORT LAUDERDALE, Florida - Founder Gerrit Harry Huizenga of Huizenga & Sons Scavenger Company, whose firm went on to become one of several partners in the merger that eventually created the national disposal firm Waste Management, Inc., recently died at the age of 85. In 1990, Mr. Huizenga was inducted into the National Solid Waste Management Association’s Hall of Fame. He was the father of internationally known entrepreneur Wayne Huizenga.

Known as ‘Uncle Harry’ to those close to him, the Groningen-born emigrant grew up in Chicago where many other family members and compatriots from his home province earned a living hauling garbage. Wayne and other relatives parlayed Waste Management, Inc. into one of the largest disposal companies in the world.

Huizenga Sr. came out of retirement in 1987 to work for Blockbuster Entertainment Corp., a business Wayne had turned into the largest video-rental chain in the U.S.A. ‘Uncle Harry’ dealt with Blockbuster’s real estate and store integration.

Huizenga and his wife Jean (Riddering) also had a daughter, Bonnie.