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San Marcos Chapel & Vista Chapel

Christian 07


Anne Marie DenOuden

November 4, 2018

Anne Marie Veenstra was born on July 29, 1946 in Fremont, Michigan to her beloved father and mother, Reverend Conrad and Minnie Veenstra. Anne enjoyed growing up with her two younger sisters, Kathy and Greta, as their family moved around to different pastorates in Alameda, California, and in Iowa.  Anne’s early church experiences shaped her and her deep faith in God.


Anne attended Dordt College, where she met the love of her life, Jim DenOuden. Anne graduated with a Bachelor’s of Education in 1968 and then married Jim on June 12, 1968.  Jim was drafted and sent to Germany where Anne eventually followed.  Anne often enjoyed recounting their adventures in Europe.  The couple came home to Bellflower, CA, and had their first daughter, Nicole Suzanne in 1971.  They then moved to Edgerton, MN, where their daughter Amy Michelle, arrived in 1973. Anne enjoyed being at home with her young daughters.


A move to Lakewood, CA came in 1975.  Anne began teaching at Bellflower Christian Schools in 1977.  Anne was always a diligent and passionate teacher and enjoyed her 3rd grade students’ humor and energy.  She also loved to help with Calvinettes and sing in the church choir at First Christian Reformed Church in Bellflower.  


Anne and her family enjoyed many trips to the beach, camping trips to beautiful National and State Parks around the country, and visits with family in Iowa, Minnesota, and Missouri during the summer months of these busy years. Always a lover of nature, Anne was quick to point out the beauty around her and tell Nicole and Amy to “feast your eyes”.


In 1989, Anne, Jim and Amy moved to Escondido, CA as Nicole headed off to Dordt College.  Anne then enjoyed teaching at Light and Life Christian School, where she had the privilege of leading a number of her young students to Christ.  Amy headed to Calvin College, and Anne and Jim became official empty nesters. Anne later moved to teaching at Calvin Christian Schools in Escondido, where she taught until 1995.when she and Jim moved to Bellflower, CA.  Anne again began teaching once again at Bellflower Christian Schools until she retired from teaching in 2000.  After retirement, Anne enjoyed visits with her four grandchildren, participating in Coffee Break Ministry, singing in church choir, and tutoring elementary aged children.  During this time, Anne and Jim also traveled to Israel - a highlight of Anne’s life.


In 2004, Jim accepted a position to become the President of Providence Christian College and they moved to Chino, CA.  Anne enjoyed interacting with students and staff, volunteering her time at the college, and hostessing countless guests and dinner parties on behalf of the college. Anne was always very interested in meeting new people, hearing about their lives and experiences, and making them feel welcomed and cared about.


In 2009, Jim retired, and Anne and Jim moved back to Escondido, CA to be near Amy and her family.  In 2011, Anne was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease.  As with other illnesses she experienced in the past, Anne handled this diagnosis and her eventual decline with a positive spirit and abundant grace.  Anne would constantly tell her visitors, nursing home staff, her family, and especially Jim that she loved them. 


Anne was a woman with a true servant’s heart.  She loved the Lord and wanted others to love Him too. Anne worked hard and saw her hands as tools to be used for others.  She loved to think deep thoughts and to daydream throughout her days.  She loved nature and the beauty of God’s creation and would freely point it out to others. Anne had a happy and positive nature, always seeing the best in others, and never having an unkind word. She loved children and she loved teaching. She was a loving support to Jim and had a good listening ear and willing spirit to follow where he led. Anne loved to sing and still remembered many hymns and the different verses, even as her Alzheimer’s progressed.  Anne touched many people’s lives with her kind and positive spirit.


Anne went to be with the Lord on November 4, 2018. She is preceded in death by her parents, Reverend Conrad and Minnie Veenstra.  She is survived by her husband, Jim DenOuden of Escondido, CA; daughters, Nicole (and Kevin) Dyk of Aurora, CO, and Amy (and Lauren) Jongetjes of Escondido, CA; her sisters Kathy (and Don) Mulder of Bellflower, CA and Greta (and Marv) Siebersma of Sioux Center, IA.  She is also survived by her grandchildren Russell and Chris Dyk, Russell's fiancee, Cassandra Lenderink, Nick and Brynn Jongetjes and by many other family members, friends, and students whose lives she all blessed.


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