Hendrikje Witten



On January 2, 2021, our Lord called our mother, Henny Witten home; the same day he called her dear husband home, 31 years earlier.

Henny was born on September 20, 1926, on a farm in Avereest, Overijssel, in the Netherlands, the second oldest of six children. Her schooling was limited to the mandatory 7 years of primary education, plus another year to also get her to the mandatory age 13. After school she learned how to sew and began working in a store.

In 1943, when 17, she lost her father in a tragic accident, leaving her and her siblings taking on new roles, supporting mother. It was not long after, that Egbert Jan was in the picture. Any ideas of marriage, however, had to wait when Egbert was called into military service in Indonesia. They were married in 1951. Plans to move to Canada were delayed by the birth of their first child in 1952, but not by the birth of their second child, who was 3 months old when they left for Canada in May 1953. They settled on a dairy farm north of Edmonton, hoping to eventually purchase their own. Low farm wages led to a move to the city, where they remained to raise seven children - five sons followed by two daughters. Life was busy for Henny, especially when Egbert worked two jobs. Her sewing skills were put to good use, not only making new clothes but also constantly patching the knees in the boy’s jeans. Despite the challenge, a clean home was also a priority. They purchased their first home in 1957; a small 4 room house, that ultimately could not contain 7 growing children. In 1967 they purchased a nice 3-bedroom bungalow in Beverly. Henny and Egbert were devoted members of the Christian Reformed Church. Fostering faith and Bible knowledge was central in their home. Busy as early family life was, Henny diligently sat down many evenings, books on the table, writing an “essay” for a “Dutch” Ladies Society meeting. Later she enjoyed many years helping with the Children’s Clubs in a low-cost housing area in Beverly. As her children married, the arrival of grandchildren and sharing in their growing up was a delight for her, especially after her husband passed away suddenly in 1990. They filled her life with smiles as she did theirs. Until a short time ago her house and then new condominium, with a social room, remained the family social get-together place.

Mom, grandma, and great grandma will be missed, for each of us in a special way, in a unique relationship, at different stages of vitality and health. She will also be missed by her brother and sisters, for whom she always was an older sister.

In Loving Memory of
Hendrikje Witten
(Maiden: Smit)
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Westlawn Memorial Gardens
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Edmonton, AB
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