Celebrating the life of Patricia "Patty" Ritzema
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Pieterke Land was born on July 7, 1921 to Derk Jan and Geertruida Hoiting Land in her home in Aduard, Groningen, the Netherlands. She was the oldest of 7 children. At age 15, she moved away from home to work for a farmer. She milked cows starting at 4 a.m., and worked hard for all the needs of the farmer’s family. She received 15 guilders a month, which she gave to her parents until she turned 21. It was around this time that WWII began.
She met Bert Ritzema while working as a First and Second Class Cook in the Academic University Ziekenhuis (hospital) in Groningen. They married right after the war on October 18, 1945. Four children were born in the Netherlands. They immigrated to the United States in June of 1954, settling in Fulton, Illinois. Soon they were blessed with two more sons.
Patty was a loving, energetic, passionate homemaker, teaching her children about the Lord from the time they were born. She always opened their home, her arms, and herself to anyone who needed a meal, a shoulder to cry on, or a cup of tea and a prayer.
Bert and Patty operated the Tasty-Mates Drive In in Fulton from 1964-1974. It was a family owned business and their children worked alongside them. We have very fond memories of those days when the “customer always came first,” and “never sit down if there is cleaning to do.”
One of her greatest dreams came true when she founded Fulton’s Dutch Days, in May, 1974. She was so proud that it put Fulton on the map. After the drive-in was sold, Patty became Dietary Supervisor at Borden Manor Nursing Home and Wyndcrest Nursing Home (Eagle Point Health Care Center). She was also the Head Cook at Unity Christian School. She was an active member of Bethel Christian Reformed Church, as the Bible Leader of Lydia Society for over 25 years and was involved in many prayer groups. She became an elder at the age of 88. She served as President of the Christian School Auxiliary, and was instrumental in the purchase/planning of Bargain Bonanza. Patty was also President of the Wa-Tan-Ya Club, and a board member of Love, Inc.
After Bert’s death, Patty moved to Le Mars to be by her only daughter, Trudy. She lived at Prime Assisted Living, and later moved to Good Samaritan Society. Her nickname was “Hummer” because she was always humming or singing in Dutch and in English. Calvin CRC became her church. They loved her as she did them. She was a very content, joy-filled, and thankful soul.
Most importantly, Patty’s heart was always with her Lord and her family, in that order. She loved Him and her family fiercely. She was our prayer warrior and displayed unconditional love to everyone. When she prayed, you felt as if you were in the presence of God Himself. She never complained, because she “had nothing to complain about,” and always made you feel like the most special person on this earth. She was available at the drop of a hat. She was known for her “bear hugs,” and will be greatly missed by everyone she touched.
She is survived by five siblings, Jan Land, Hilly Hoeksema, Luktje Wijbenga, Jannie Bruinsma, Willem (Anja) Land all of the Netherlands; one daughter, Trudy (Ken) Klaver of Le Mars, IA; four sons, Dick (Lois) of Pease, MN, Jake (Priscilla) of Byron, IL, Bill (Anna) of St. Catharines, ON, Ed (Diane) of Posen, IL; her daughter-in-law, Rose Ritzema of Chattanooga, TN; 22 grandchildren; 46 great-grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Bert in 2006; her son, Fred; her grandson, James Klaver; her brother, Gerben (Renske) Land; brothers-in-law, Piet Hoeksma, Lolke Wijbenga and Tjitte Bruinsma; sister-in-law, Johanna Land.
A visitation with family present will be held at Bethel Christian Reformed Church in Fulton, Illinois on Friday, September 4 from 6:00 - 9:00 p.m. A private funeral and burial will take place on Saturday, September 5. Online condolences may be directed to www.bosmarenkes.com. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to the James Albert Klaver Memorial Scholarship Fund, Dordt College, Sioux Center, IA, or to the Unity Christian School in Fulton.
Memorials may be mailed to the Bosma-Renkes Funeral Home 1500 10th Avenue Fulton, IL 61252 and we will forward to the family.
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1208 3rd Avenue
Fulton, IL 61252
701 Fowler Rd,
Fulton, IL 61252
James Albert Klaver Memorial Scholarship
Memorials may be mailed to the Bosma-Renkes Funeral Home and we will forward to the family.
Fulton, IL 61252