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Forest Lake

John Kruizenga

KRUZENGA, John - Web Obit Photo.jpg


March 22, 1934 - August 21, 2022

On a radiant Sunday afternoon our beloved and steadfast father, grandfather (Pake), and great-grandfather (Oerpake), took his leave of this temporal world to be received into the infinite mystery of the hereafter.

Our grief is tempered by humble gratitude for the preceding weeks that Dad was able to bask in the loving embrace, joy, and inestimable richness of deep communion with family, friends, and all creatures great and small. We are comforted by the wonder of this tender mercy granted him.

He leaves to mourn his passing five surviving children, Leonard (Jennifer), Herbert (Laurie), Peter, Karen (Garry), and Kenneth (Paula); grandchildren, Michelle (Troy), Laura (Jeff), Tate (Heather), Spence, Lanza (Amy), Helio (Mia), and Anthony; great-grandchildren, Luca, Maximus, Aiden, and Cole, as well as his surviving siblings, in-laws, nephews, nieces and friends.

Dad was predeceased by his beloved wife Bertha (née deJong) in 2007, youngest son Robbie in 1970, and great-granddaughter Ava in 2011.

The eldest of eight children, at 17 he emigrated from Friesland (Holland) to Canada in 1951 with his parents and siblings, and dutifully worked to establish the family.

In 1955 Dad married the love of his life to begin his own family. When Mom became seriously ill in 1996 he tended to her with unflinching devotion, love and tenderness for over a decade, ensuring she lived out her remaining years in dignity, peace and the assurance of his loving proximity. 

Throughout his life as a husband and father, Dad possessed a relentless work ethic and accepted his responsibilities as a provider with pride and resolve, qualities first acquired working as a young farmhand near Carmen, Manitoba where his family first lived in Canada.

He joyfully embraced his role as Pake taking great pride in the accomplishments and aspirations of his grandchildren and forged deeply personal and independent relationships with each one of them. They cherished his attentiveness and returned his kindness and devotion to them with their own fierce admiration, profound love and deep respect for him.

Complex, forceful and highly opinionated, Dad was seldom encumbered by prevailing conventions or orthodoxies. His sharp intelligence, independence of thought and unshakeable convictions often posed significant challenges for those unaccustomed with such candour. However, he rewarded those brave, curious and resilient enough to negotiate whatever paradoxes they might encounter in him with his earnest affection, deep sensitivity and unflagging loyalty.

Throughout his life Dad summoned his emotional, intellectual and spiritual sustenance from family, friends, classical music, literature, language, poetry, the exploration of his own spirituality and appreciation for the wonders offered by the natural and animal world. He remained surprisingly robust until the end and enjoyed reaching out to his surviving siblings, extended family, contemporaries and friends to provide whatever moral comfort and assistance they might require.

We kindly request that all of his friends and relatives take a few minutes to honour his memory by sharing photos, memories, and stories, using the comment section on this page.

A memorial service will be held at 1:00 pm on September 29, 2022 at Covenant Christian Reformed Church, 653 Knowles Avenue, Winnipeg, MB

In lieu of flowers donations to PETA or the Winnipeg Humane Society ― causes near and dear to Dad’s heart ― would be appreciated.

 “Blessed be the covenant of love

between what is hidden and what is revealed.”

~Leonard Cohen, Book of Mercy


Cremation & Life Celebrations

530 St, Mary Avenue - Winnipeg

204-421-5501 -

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