In the early morning of May 25, 2021, Petronella Bertha De Ruiter Jorritsma, Nelly, passed
away. Surviving Nellie are her children, Jelle, Peggy, Adrie, Paul and most influenced and
cherished, her grandchildren, Marijke, Lundi, Ana, Ellie, Jan, Sackett, Arie, Rudy, Annie, Clara,
and Sara. She will be meeting her most beloved grandson Casey who sadly preceded her.
Nellie and her twin, Kniertje (Corrie) were born in Scheveningen, Holland November 24, 1932.
Nellie, Corrie, and her older sister, Clasina (Siene) grew up through economic hardship and war
like you expect the de Ruiter sisters would; with an air of defiance, bravado, mirth, and grit.
Add a bit of recklessness to the defiance, bravado, mirth, and grit and you have Nellie. Add a
bit of love to that and you have Oma. Every tale told was tall and every deed done was an
adventure. But, we knew that most of those tales were intrepid truths.
She survived depression and war with a daredevil flair. She bravely emigrated to America with
her husband Bert, as a refugee with a five year old Jelle and six month old Peggy in tow then
settling in America raising all four of us with real grit. She loved her children and grandchildren
without fault. She laughed so hard she would pee her pants. She would defend us with violent
ferocity. She felt the weight of the world and saw the tops of the clouds. Not many could say her
name without an appreciative smile.
Nellie will be laid to rest in Littleton, Colorado. She is the only person I know that can look at the
Rocky Mountains and say, “it looks a little like Holland.” Tot ziens lieve Oma.
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