Grietje “Gerda” Joldersma
Gerda Joldersma, a resident of the Park Drive Villa in Williamsburg for the past 34 years, passed away at Winchester District Memorial Hospital on Mon., Jan. 14, 2019. She was 92.
Gerda was was born on Sept. 1, 1926, in the Town of Emmen, Drenthe in the Netherlands. She was the second oldest of 10 children.
Since the Second World War started in 1939, she lived all her teenage years during the war, and this had a major impact on shaping who she was. After finishing Grade 7, she began working out in other homes to help the family survive by cleaning, baking, and babysitting. But because they lived on a farm, they never lacked for food.
Gerda and Marten dated for about four years before getting married on Aug. 22, 1950. They wanted to marry sooner, but they couldn’t because there was a housing shortage. After marriage, they lived in the Netherlands for a year, but jobs were scarce. So, they decided to emigrate to Canada. They boarded a ship and were two of the many immigrants to land at Pier 21 in Halifax.
From there, they spent a year working for a farmer in Dubec, N.B. Later, they moved to Ontario to join Oom Jan and Tante Jenny who had also immigrated to Canada. Later, the rest of the Heuving family also immigrated to Canada.
From 1952 to 1961, Marten worked for several farmers and also worked on the St. Lawrence Seaway. They moved numerous times during that time. Finally, in 1961, they had made enough money to buy their own farm near Hulbert. In the meantime, God also blessed them with five children.
In 1982, they moved to Williamsburg and began working together as caretaker/maintenance/groundskeeper at the Park Villa. Later, they moved into the Park Villa and became a significant part of that community for more than 30 years.
The lives of Marten and Grietje centred around their love of God. God called Marten to be home with Him on May 25, 2006, and Grietje on Jan.14, 2019. Their children, along with their 12 grandchildren and 19 great-grandchildren, can testify of God’s goodness and faithfulness they have seen through Marten and Gerda.
She was the loving mother of Mary Douma (Harold) of Lunenburg, Ginus (Margaret) of Hulbert, Lambert (Hennie) of Hulbert, and Arlene Vander Veen (Sid) of Drayton. She was the dear sister of Klaas Heuving (Elly) of Merrickville, Ginus Heuving (Grace) of Belleville, Frans Heuving of London, and Henny Heuvel (Walter) of Iroquois; and sister-in-law Henny Heuving. Oma will be fondly remembered by 12 grandchildren and 19 great-grandchildren. She was predeceased by her husband, Marten; her daughter, Jenny Joldersma; an infant daughter Jantje; her sister, Jacoba Bouwman; and her brothers, Fred, John, Walter, and Wick Heuving. She is also survived by nieces and nephews.
Friends called at the Marsden and McLaughlin Funeral Home in Williamsburg on Thurs., Jan. 17 from 4 to 8 pm. The funeral service was held at the Williamsburg Christian Reformed Church on Fri., Jan. 18 at 11 am, with Rev. Bernie Bakker officiating followed by interment at New Union Cemetery in Williamsburg. The pallbearers were granddaughters Sarah Geertsema, Heather Vedder, Erin Westra, Karly DeVries, Chelsea Van Moorsel, and Bethany Streutker.
Donations to Timothy Christian School or Winchester District Memorial Hospital would be gratefully acknowledged by the family.
If you are making your donation online or by cheque directly to the charity, please include the following note with your gift “please notify the family.”
Online condolences may be made at www.marsdenmclaughlin.com