Cornelia de Jong
1928 - 2022
Obituary of Cornelia de Jong
de Jong, Cornelia
July 1, 1928 to March 6, 2022
Early in the morning of Sunday, March 6th, 2022, Cornelia “Corrie” de Jong, aged 93, passed away peacefully at Erie Shores Healthcare Hospital. Recently celebrating their 70th wedding anniversary, Corrie was the devoted wife of Rev. Peter de Jong of Leamington, loving mother to Jim (pre-deceased 2016) (Judy), Rick (Deb), Everett (Pat), and Peter (Audrey), doting “Oma” to Richard (Katey), Martin (Farrah), David (Laura), Kristin (Paul), Ashley (Sam), Nicole (Dave), Micah, Mackenzie, Corey, Elliott, Tineke (Jason), and James (Karli), and proud great-grandmother of Jacob, Hannah, Abagayle, Leah, Makayla, Sarah, Daphne, Ella, Micah, Luke, Anna, Amelia, Evelyn, Kelsey, James, and Maya. From a large family, Corrie is survived by sisters Dickje and Sjaan, and predeceased by parents Evert and Dirkje Keus, and siblings Co, Cor, Ann, Martinus, Leen, Evert, and Geer.
Born in Den Haag, the Netherlands, Corrie and Peter endured the uncertainty and hardships of war. Hunger, especially during the devastating Hunger Winter, drove young Corrie, her sister Geer, and dad to frequently leave home to bicycle and walk many kilometres to barter for food from farmers and carry their heavy loads home in support of their family. A reminder to never waste food became Corrie’s message over her lifetime. Shortly after the war ended, Corrie met Peter and soon were interested in each other, fell in love, and became an engaged couple. During their engagement, Peter served for three years in the Dutch military in Indonesia before returning home in 1951. In a short time, the young couple married and, in just 10 days, were on their way to Canada, as immigrants, to establish their new life together.
While Peter studied for the ministry, Corrie tended to four busy boys, worked part-time as a cleaner and made ends meet by washing and ironing clothes for college students. It was not an easy, early life, when pennies desperately mattered! Yet, through their determination to start a new life together, their faith in God’s guidance, and their strength as a couple, their life firmly took root as Dutch-Canadian immigrants. Assisted by the grateful support of dear friends like the de Vries, the van Horns, the Blou’s, and others, Corrie and Peter answered calls to minister in Winnipeg, in Kingsville at Faith Reformed Church, and in Valetta at Valetta Presbyterian Church. Corrie was actively devoted to these congregations participating in the choir, the Women’s Society, Bible Study, visiting the sick, fundraising, etc., all in support of Peter’s important congregational work. Their retirement in 1995 to their beautiful home on Lake Erie, designed and built by their son Jim, drew some of these lifelong responsibilities to a close.
After 93 unique, challenging, and rewarding years, Oma will be forever remembered for innumerable qualities, but three stand out:
1) Oma and “Pop” were a team, united early in life, united by purpose, and united in their genuine belief and confidence in each other; moreover, they possessed an unwavering commitment to the grace of our Lord. Their faith was steadfast, and their rock on which they shared the important work of His church over many fruitful years.
2) Oma was a skilled tailor, an amazing cook, baker, housekeeper, and money manager! Her talents in the kitchen yielded fresh homemade bread and buns, canned fruit and vegetables, delectable pastries, Dutch-styled desserts, and meals that were whipped up no matter who came calling. With 12 grandkids and 14 great-grandchildren, the family particularly welcomed her culinary talents and took full advantage of her generosity; finishing everything on one’s plate was never a chore!
3) Finally, Oma had a deep, deep love for Pop, their four boys, their spouses, and the children of their children. Oma was exceedingly proud of her family, made sure they knew they were cherished, and gave of herself to ensure their happiness and comfort. Oma expressed this many times when we gathered and used her quiet sense of humour, energy, and enjoyment of the moment to show her unabridged love.
Although the pain of Oma not being present is real, we are comforted by the knowledge that Oma’s suffering is over and that she lies safely in the arms of our Lord and Saviour who says “Come thou good and faithful servant”.
Visitations will be held Tuesday, March 8, 2022 at Reid Funeral Home 14 Russell Street, Leamington, Ontario N8H 1T8 from 2:00 to 5:00 PM. Funeral will be held on Wednesday, March 9, 2022 at 11:00 AM at Faith Reformed Church 1115 Seacliff Drive, Kingsville, Ontario N9Y 2L8. Reservations for visitation are recommended at www.reidfuneralhome.ca. Masks are required for the visitation and the service. Interment at Evergreen Memorial Garden Cemetery 366 Talbot Street West Leamington, Ontario N8H 4H4 to follow the service.
On behalf of the family, sincere expressions of gratitude are extended to Leamington’s first responders, and the doctors, nurses and administrative staff of Erie Shores HealthCare Hospital. In lieu of flowers, donations may be gratefully directed to Faith Reformed Church, 1115 Seacliff Drive, Kingsville, Ontario N9Y 2L8.