Antje (Anneke) Houtsma

Obituary of Antje (Anneke) Houtsma

Antje (Anneke) Houtsma was born on April 10, 1938, in the village of Skalsum, in the province of Friesland, The Netherlands.


Anneke was the daughter of Joris and Aukje van der Ploeg. She grew up on a dairy and crop farm with brothers Martin (Betty) van der Ploeg, Klaas (Mares) Vanderploeg, Hendrik (Tineke) van der Ploeg and sisters Hilly (Rients) Westra, Tineke (Coert) Rauwerda, and Hinke (Jouke) Smits.


Anneke completed secondary and secretarial school in the Netherlands and moved to Montreal in 1963 with her husband Johannes, where she worked for Quantas Airlines.


In 1966, the couple moved to Sackville where their children, Rebecca, Greg, Tim and Jessica grew up.


Anneke and her family loved spending time at their farm at Amos Point in Little Shemogue which they shared with their friend Norman Amos. Anneke was a gifted gardener and cook and the family lived on beautiful home cooked meals with fresh vegetables from the garden.


The family moved to Madison, Wisconsin for a four year period in the late 1970’s and spent weekends traveling around the state, visiting state parks, hosting visiting family members from the Netherlands, and made lifelong friends whom Anneke treasured.


While raising her family, Anneke completed a B.A. in Math and later a B.Ed at Mount Allison University. She taught at the Lion Don Steeves School in Moncton, Dorchester Consolidated School, and Salem Elementary School in Sackville. Calm, consistent, and kind, Anneke loved children and teaching and taught right up to age 65.


After she retired, grandsons Rowan and Theo (Tim and Jill Houtsma) came along and Anneke spent several years helping take care of them while their parents worked. It was one of her greatest joys to be able to be present and a part of Rowan and Theo’s lives in their early years.


Anneke enjoyed traveling to the Netherlands to spend time with her parents and brothers and sisters there, and to the US to visit her children and grandchildren Ava and Stella in Missouri (Greg and Liz Houtsma) and Tegan (Dan), Rona, and Piers (Marianne) in Illinois (Rebecca Houtsma and Willy Hunter).


Anneke was a long time member and elder of St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, and supporter of the Sackville Boy Scouts. She loved caring for people with good food and hospitality, and cherished her family and friends.


Sudoku, flowers, gardening, jam, whiz with numbers, shrewd investor, loved her internal spreadsheets, taught Willy to drive fast, maybe Tim and Rowan too, known for waffles and dipping cups of maple syrup, rhubarb and red currant jelly, chasing pheasants out of the garden, baby potatoes, loved, loved, loved doing laundry, and could recreate virtually any recipe from taste alone.


Anneke was known, and beloved, as Beppe (Frisian name for Grandmother) by her grandchildren and the Hunter cousins.


In the last weeks and months and years of her life, Anneke relished fresh vegetables from Gil and Carmen, pizza and barbecue from Michelle and Blaise, Thursday night pizza night with Rowan and Rebecca, visits and phone calls from her children, friends, and family, and the excellent care and friendship of the staff at the Drew Nursing Home. 


Just after turning 86 on April 10th, Anneke passed quickly, gently, and peacefully the following evening, April 11, 2024.


Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to Erin Campbell and staff of Campbell’s Funeral Home, Sackville (506) 364-8188. There will be no memorial service for Anneke. Anneke’s family hopes that those who knew Anneke will remember her in their own way.


On-line condolences and sharing of memories may be forwarded to the family through our website or by visiting the funeral home Facebook page.

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Antje (Anneke)