Vanden Berg, Johanna A. “Jo”, of Flushing, age 82, went to join Bob, her husband of 51 years on Wednesday, February 20, 2013. A funeral mass will be celebrated at noon on Monday, February 25, 2013 at St. Robert Catholic Church, 310 N. Cherry Street, Flushing. Fathers Roy Horning and Robert McGraw will concelebrate with a luncheon to follow. Visitation will be 2:00 - 8:00 p.m. Sunday at Rossell Funeral Home and 11:00 a.m. until time of the mass Monday at the church. A vigil for the Deceased will be 7:00 p.m. Sunday at the funeral home. If desired, memorial contributions may be made to the Flushing Outreach Center. Jo was born in Amsterdam, Netherlands on November 29, 1930, the daughter of Henricus and Adriana (Sierhuis) Geurts. She married Bastiaan “Bob” Vanden Berg in Amsterdam on February 6, 1954. He preceded her in death on February 22, 2005.
Jo and Bob lived a frugal life, faithful to God, church, and their family, but not everyone knew of their great compassion for the poor and downtrodden. Only at the time of Jo’s death did others learn that she and Bob had been quietly supporting nearly 40 charities. They truly lived what they believed.
Jo was a member of St. Robert Catholic Church. She was co-founder of the Lansing Diocesan Council on Women, Poverty & Age. She was a champion for social justice for over 45 years and worked closely with NETWORK, a National Catholic Social Justice Lobby and the Washington electorate to promote equality. Jo set a powerful example for those following in her footsteps.
She will be dearly missed by her sons, Robert A. and wife Liza of Navarre, FL, Michael G. and wife Gina of Flushing; daughter, Mary Jo Vanden Berg of Cincinnati, OH; three grandchildren, Courtney Vanden Berg and fiancé Nathaniel Crain, Robert S. Vanden Berg and Clinton and wife Tina Vanden Berg; three great-grandchildren, Reese, Christa and Benjamin; brother, Han and wife Jeanet Geurts; sister, Tine Schoutsen; brother-in-law, Wim and wife Ans Vanden Berg; two sisters-in-law, Nell van den Nieuwboer and Annie Vanden Berg, all of the Netherlands; close friends, Nancy (Walker) and Larry Dew of Flushing, Joan and Chuck Jacobson of Clio and Fritz Miller of Ocala, FL; many nieces, nephews and dear friends. She was also preceded in death by her dear sister, Mieke (Geurts) Burkunk and close friend, Art Walker.
Jo was one-of-a-kind and, to her family and friends, no one will ever replace her. Her spirit, kindness and generosity, sense of humor, dancing eyes and gentle smile will be dearly missed.