Jennie Aarsen, beloved mother, grandmother and great-grandmother passed away on 23 August 2016 at the age of 90.
Jennie (Jantje) was born in Andijk, in the province of North Holland, the Netherlands, on 23 July 1926, the eighth of twelve children. In April 1936 at the age of nine, she immigrated to the Dutch Christian Reformed farming community of Woodynook near Blackfalds, Alberta, Canada with her father, Jan Brouwer, her mother, Anje Brouwer (neť Prins), her seven brothers, George (Edith), Clarence (Hilda), Neil (Jo), James (Val), Pieter (Del), Norman (Jo) and Johnny (Jenny), and her sister, Gay (Henry) Solomons. Jennie is survived by her brothers James, Norman and Pieter.
Jennie was a devoted daughter to her parents, leaving school at age 12 without complaint to take on the household chores because of her motherís weak heart. At age 25, she married Cornelius Pieter Aarsen, a farm labourer who immigrated from the Netherlands after World War II, and they had eight children together. In 1961, they moved from their farm to an acreage in Lacombe that bordered the Lacombe Golf Course. Fifteen years later, they moved to the Neerlandia area north of Edmonton, but after an unexpected separation and divorce, Jennie moved to Edmonton where she ran the cafeteria in the first year of what was then Kingís College at its location on 97th Street. She also took in student boarders, many of whom were from the Dutch Christian Reformed Church community. Jennie retired to the country near Bon Accord, living on her daughterís acreage for many years before moving to the Emmanuel Home in north Edmonton. After being hospitalized following a fall in 2012, Jennie lived at the Youvillle Home in St. Albert until her passing.
Jennieís life was devoted to taking care of others. She provided a cozy and welcoming home for her parents and brothers, and later for her husband and children, and later again for the numerous boarders who lodged with her. When she wasnít tending to household chores, she was often busy doing handiwork, knitting and crocheting countless sweaters, socks, and blankets for many happy recipients. Jennie enjoyed listening to Wilf Carter, especially his yodeling tunes. For her entire life, Jennie took solace in the comfort and love of God knowing that she would join her loved ones in heaven when Jesus sought to call her home.
Jennie is predeceased by her baby son, Richard John, and survived by her seven children, Anita Moes (Alan), Richard Aarsen (Carolyne), Grace Berkenbosch (Roy), Gwen Bosch (Bill), Jan Aarsen (Corinne), Brian Aarsen (Carolyn), and Corinne Aarsen.
Jennie will live on in the hearts of her grandchildren: Esther Moes (Colin Birnie), Michael Moes (Wendy), Michelle Meston (Mike), Joan Tolsma (Brad), Laura Tolsma (Dan), Amanda Hanlan, Dustin Moes, Jessie Aarsen (Emily), Cheyanne Rudmik (Ben), Fern Aarsen, Amiel Aarsen, Jennifer Berkenbosch (James Vriend), Paul Berkenbosch, Erin Berkenbosch, Leema Antle (David), Kacie Berkenbosch, Nathan Bosch (Michelle), Dan Bosch (Chanda), Arissa Hansen (Andrew), Steve Bosch (Savannah), James Aarsen, Matthew Aarsen (Krisha), Carmen Wierenga (Brent), Dan Aarsen (Britani), Graham Aarsen, and Amanda Robinson.
And her great-grandchildren: Liam Birnie, Miles Birnie, Dylan Moes, Nolan Moes, Gavin Moes, Renea Meston, Brianna Meston, Justin Meston, Tristin Meston, Erin Tolsma, Jacob Tolsma, Jenna Tolsma, Kirstin Tolsma, Paul Tolsma, Emily Tolsma, Leah Tolsma, Madison Hanlan, Corson Hanlan, Annely Rudmik, Elin Rudmik, Owen Rudmik, Miles Rudmik, Silas Vriend, Eli Vriend, George Vriend, Katelynn Hansen, Isaac Hansen, Willem Hansen, Bennett Bosch, Daniel Bosch, Easton Aarsen, Mackenzie Aarsen, Theo Wierenga, and Milo Robinson.
Please join the family on Monday, August 29, 2016 for the interment at the Woodynook Cemetery at 11 am. The Memorial Service will be held at noon, followed by a time of refreshments and fellowship. The Woodynook Christian Reformed Church is located on Woodynook Road, three miles south of the Junction of Hwy 12 and 792 (twelve miles west of Lacombe). Arrangements entrusted to the compassionate staff at Foster and McGarvey.