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Rena E. Heusinkveld

April 30, 1915 February 29, 2016
Rena E. Heusinkveld
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Obituary for Rena E. Heusinkveld

RENA ESTHER HEUSINKVELD, 100, of Resthave Home, Morrison, IL, died Monday, February 29, 2016, at Resthave. Rena was born April 30, 1915, to Harry and Mary (Wilkens) Akker, at their home located on Lyndon Rd., north-east of Morrison, IL. She was named after her grandmother, who was Rena, and her aunt, who was Esther. The family traveled by horse and buggy, riding 16 miles to Fulton, IL every Sunday for church services and to visit family. In 1918 her father purchased a new Maxwell touring car. Rena recalls going to the Iowa State Fair on poor and dusty dirt roads. Rena attended Hiddleson School, a one room school in rural Whiteside County, with about 25 students - kindergarten through 8th grade " and one teacher. Her schooling ended after 8th grade, as there was no way for her to get to high school in Morrison every day. She worked on the farm for her father, driving a horse to plow corn, make hay and shock grain. She also did some housework and child care for different families in town. She drove to Minnesota with her brother, Bill, to help work their Uncle Seap Damhoff"s 1,350 acre farm. When Rena turned 18 she joined the Ebenezer Reformed Church in Morrison and confessed her faith in the Lord. It"s there that she met Clarence Heusinkveld. They spent dating time together when he could borrow someone"s car to go and meet her wherever she was working. On August 9, 1935 they were married. They first lived in a small bungalow in Morrison on W. Park Street, moving to Winfield Street, then Morris Street, Portland Avenue, and back again to Park Street before building a house on S. Jackson Street. Their children Barbara, Harvey and Roger were all born in the old Morrison Hospital on Main Street. Richard was born in the new hospital on N. Jackson. They made many trips to vacation in Wisconsin for fishing and socializing. They also visited Washington DC for their 35th wedding anniversary and Hawaii for their 40th. Rena was a stay at home mom for 28 years and then in 1968 she started working for General Electric, working there for eleven years before retiring in 1977. She learned how to drive a car in 1968; her son Richard taught her as Clarence did not approve of her need to drive. Clarence also worked at GE and retired in the December of 1975; nine months later he had a heart attack while fishing on the Mississippi River and passed away in October of 1976. Rena decided to further her education and received her High School GED diploma in 1991, at the age of 76. In 2012 she sold her house on Jackson Street and entered Resthave Home Assisted Living. In spite of her impaired vision she stayed active, knitting mittens and stocking hats for needy children. Rena was very active in church work where she belonged to the Lydian Society, the Ladies Aid Society and the Quilters. She also served as a Sunday school, Catechism and Vacation Bible School teacher and was the church librarian for 20 years. She had been a Cub Scouts Den Mother, Assistant Brownie Leader and a Golden Meals volunteer for 25 years. She enjoyed needlework of all kinds and traveling. She visited 43 states and Mexico, by bus and her car. She also toured Europe, visiting the Netherlands, Germany, Austria and Switzerland. She attended church women"s conferences in Los Angeles, CA on the Queen Mary and also at Hope College in Holland, MI and in Minneapolis, MN. Rena said her secret to a long life is to trust in the Lord with prayer and worship. Survivors include one daughter, Barbara Phillips of Naples, FL; three sons, Harvey Heusinkveld of The Villages, FL; Roger Heusinkveld of Forest City, NC; and Rev. Richard (Linda) Heusinkveld of Lansing, MI; twelve grandchildren; seventeen great-grandchildren; six great-great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Clarence; one grandson, Randy Heusinkveld; two sisters, Gertrude Stokes and Helen Tisdale-Doan; four brothers, Cornelius, William, Lester, and Clifford Akker.

FUNERAL SERVICE: 11:00 AM, Saturday, April 2, 2016, at Ebenezer Reformed Church - Morrison, ILCO-OFFICIATING: Rev. Gerald H. Norman - Pastor of Ebenezer Reformed Church - Morrison, IL and Rev. Richard Heusinkveld - Pastor of Immanuel Community Reformed Church - Lansing, MIVISITATION: 9:30 AM until time of service, Saturday, April 2, 2016 at Ebenezer Reformed Church - Morrison, ILINTERMENT: Grove Hill Cemetery - Morrison, ILThe Morrison Chapel of the Bosma-Renkes Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

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