Aafke VanderVeen (nee Hoekstra), a resident of the Woodland Villa Nursing Home in Long Sault for the past eight years, passed away there on Thurs., June 27, 2013. She was 89.
Aafke was born in The Netherlands on Feb. 16, 1924, the oldest of five children born to her parents, Ype and Klaaske Hoekstra (nee Wiersma). At a very young age, she became a caregiver within her own family, experienced the excitement and fears of the Second World War, and the joy of the Liberation of The Netherlands.
In 1950, she married Theunis VanderVeen, and they immigrated to Canada in 1952, with a baby in their arms, and had five more children in the coming years. They came with practically nothing but built a life for themselves and their family in their adopted homeland. In 1982, Aafke lost her dear husband, and travelled the rest of her journey here on this Earth without a partner.
In 1985, she moved back to the home farm, and was an important part of her family and the lives of the people she touched for 15 years. Then, in the year 2000, she moved to the Williamsburg seniors home and, soon after, began to suffer the first signs of memory loss.
Aafke loved her family, enjoyed travelling to see them, and made friends everywhere. She will be fondly remembered by her family for her love for the Lord, her generous nature, and her willingness to help anyone in need. She was a very hard worker who possessed an excellent sense of humour.
She is survived by her children, Heine (Bonnie) of Agassiz, B.C., Ype (Gail) of Ingleside, Ykje (Doug) Striker of Agassiz, B.C., Clare (Bill) Don of Smiths Falls, Sid (Arlene) of Drayton, and Brenda (David) DeJong of Chesterville. She was the dear sister of Gerlof Hoekstra (Siep), Jan Hoekstra (Reino), and Boukje Grypstra, all of The Netherlands. She was predeceased by her husband, Theunis, her granddaughter, Lori-Ann VanderVeen, her brother Reinder (Nel) Hoekstra, and her brother-in-law, Jaap Grypstra. Beppe will be fondly remembered by 22 grandchildren, and 35 great-grandchildren. She is also survived by many nieces and nephews.
Friends called at the Marsden and McLaughlin Funeral Home in Williamsburg on Mon., July 1 from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 pm. The funeral service was held at the Williamsburg Christian Reformed Church on Tues., July 2 at 11 am with James Kooistra officiating. Interment followed at New Union Cemetery in Williamsburg. The pallbearers were grandsons, Matthew Don, Josh VanderVeen, Kris Don, Tony VanderVeen, Jordan VanderVeen, and Travis DeJong. The honourary pallbearers were granddaughters, Jennifer Wagensveld, Helena Kwantes, Debra Vuyk, Jessica Menkhorst, Kristen DeJong, Beth VanderVeen, and Erin DeJong.
Donations to Timothy Christian School would be gratefully acknowledged by the family.
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