Gerda Hornsveld passed away early Saturday morning, October 10, 2009, at the age of 85.
Gerda was born May 18, 1924, in Baarn, Netherlands. At the age of 25, after surviving WWII and the Nazi occupation of Holland, she immigrated to America in March of 1950.
With her husband Bert and 2 ½-year-old daughter she voyaged aboard a freighter, which took 30 days, passing through the Panama Canal to Los Angeles. Because they loved the ocean, the family settled in the Newport Beach area, where Gerda raised her three children and learned to speak English.
In 1968 the Hornsvelds purchased a small hardware store in Temecula and decided to relocate their home to Fallbrook. They loved the small village, with only one traffic light.
Gerda’s heart has always loved Fallbrook, where she spent her time as a Pink Lady volunteer at the Hospital Auxiliary, with the Fallbrook Garden Club, volunteering at the Angel Society Thrift Shop and at the Mission Theatre.
She was an avid swimmer and taught many of her grandchildren to swim. She also followed her dream and successfully completed the La Jolla Seniors rough water swim.
Gerda enjoyed walking, knitting and staying busy. Up until a few years ago, she would enthusiastically report to work one day a week at her son’s hardware store to help in the receiving department. Visiting and helping with her grandchildren and great-grandchildren always brought a smile to her face. She loved meeting people and was a very a caring lady to everyone.
She is preceded in death by husband Bert and survived by children Gerda Sparks and husband Tom of Newport Beach, Hank Hornsveld and wife Patty of Fallbrook and Roy Hornsveld and wife Valerie of Townsend, MT; nine grandchildren; and 17 great-grandchildren.
Memorial services will be held Friday, October 16, in Newport Beach. Donations may be made to the Alzheimer’s Foundation.