Willem (William) Van Roekel
Zoon van Geurt Van Roekel en Mathilda Rouwenhorst, geboren 28-4 en gedoopt 9-7-1893 USA IA Sioux Center, overleden 8-9-1931 USA IA Orange City en begraven Sioux Center Memory Gardens
Trouwt 13-4-1920 Jeanette Balkema, dochter van Nicholas Balkema en Clara van Rooijen, geboren 10-12-1892 USA IA Newkirk, overleden 5-2-1934 USA IA Orange City en begraven Sioux Center Memory Gardens
Wm. Van Roekel of Orange City auditor of Sioux county, was drowned in the swimming pool, 7 ½ miles northwest of Orange City about 5:45 Tuesday afternoon. In company with Mrs. Van Roekel and three children, and G. Voogd, superintendent of the Orange City Schools, he had driven to the pool after leaving his office in the courty house at 5 o'clock. The pool has been operated jointly this summer by the American Legion of Sioux Center and the Lions Club of Orange City and a lifeguard had been stationed there until Sept. 1st.
Mr. Van Roekel was the only member of the party who had entered the water. He was reputed to have been only a fair swimmer and shortly after entering the water his wife saw him struggling only a short distance from shore where he drowned in less than 7 feet of water. Supt. Voogd was unable to swim and he accompanied Mrs.Van Roekel and children to the nearest farm house, about three quarters of a mile away, to telephone for help, leaving Mr. Holtrop, a gravel hauler who was unable to swim, alone at the pool.
Peter Mouw and Byron Van Roekel, a nephew, responded immediately to the call for help and Byron Van Roekel succeeded in recovering the body but fully 30 minutes had elapsed before the body was brought to the surface. Drs. S. B, DePree and A. C. Jongewaard of Sioux Center arrived at the swimming pool about the time the body was recovered and attempted resuscitation but without success. A pulmotor was also secured from Hawarden and although efforts at resuscitation were continued for nearly six hours the were all to no avail.
Mr. Van Roekel was only 36 years of age but had served as county auditor for nearly eleven years and was a most popular and efficient county official. He was a veteran of the World War with an overseas record. He was first elected to the office of county auditor in 1920 and was re-elected five successive times without opposition.
Always accommodating, yet painstaking in the discharge of his official duties, he merited the high esteem in which he was held by his Co-workers and the public with whom he came in contact.
Besides his widow he is survived by three children, Clara, aged 10; Kenneth, aged 5; and Ruth, aged 3. He also leaves five brothers and two sisters: John of Hull; Otto of Orange City; Albert of Sioux Center; George of Alton; Henry of Amherst, Mass.; Mrs. John Mouw of Rock Valley, and Mrs. C.A. Kuyper of Sioux City. Mrs. Van Roekel is a daughter of former Senator and Mrs. N. Balkema of Sioux Center.
Hawarden Independent 1931-09-10.
Mrs. Wm.Van Roekel Joins Her Husband
Was 42 Years of Age - Mother of Three Children
Mrs. Wm. Van Roekel passed on early Monday morning at the home of her parents, Mr. and Mrs. N. Balkema, after an illness of several years. Her condition did not become acute until Friday night, when she had a slight stroke and on Saturday passed into a coma from which she did not rally, passing away quietly at 3:30 Monday morning.
Jeanette Balkema was born on Dec. 10, 1892, at Newkirk. When she was a year old she came to Sioux Center with her family and grew to womanhood in this community.
She graduated from the local high school and attended Hope college, Holland, Mich., for one year, but finished her college course at Iowa State Teachers College, Cedar Falls, from which she was a graduate.
For two years she taught at McKee, Ky., in a mountain mission school, then taught for about two years in the Sioux Center public school, until obliged to discontinue her work on account of ill health.
On April 13, 1920, she was married to Wm. Van Roekel, who in the fall of the same year was elected to the office of county auditor. Three children were born to the couple, Clara 12, Kenneth 7, and Ruth 5.
Early in September, 1931, Auditor Van Roekel was tragicallly drowned while bathing with his family in the county pool east of Sioux Center.
Mrs. Van Roekel continued to reside in Orange City, where she and her husband were charter members of Trinity Reformed church. She was active in church work and Secretary of the Philathea Sunday school class. She was also a member of the Legion Auxiliary at Orange City and one of the ....?
The passing of her husband, however, ill health continued to grow upon her and last summer. She consulted physicians at Rochester, Minn., where it was found she had a dreaded malady. Showing the same courage and fortitude she displayed at the passing of her husband, she bravely made arrangements for the future of her children and uncomplainingly took her place in the home of her parents, being no longer able to keep up her home at Orange City. A temporary operation relieved her of suffering and everything possible was done for her comfort. She was able to be up and about and attended a social gathering a week before taken ill.
She is survived by three children, her parents and three sisters and three brothers, of whom she was the third in age, namely Mrs. Fred Den Beste, Sioux Center; Dr. Walter Balkema, Newton, Iowa; Mrs. P.B. Mouw, Sioux Center; Raymond R. Balkema, Sioux City; Clayton Balkema Sioux Center; Mrs. Bardley Schnetz, Lincoln, Neb.
The family have the deep sympathy of the community in the passing of this unselfish woman, so devoted to her family and ever ready to aid in every good work.
Dr. and Mrs. Balkema arrived from Newton Saturday night to be at their sister's bedsite.
Funeral services were held Wednesday at the home and Central Reformed church, where Rev. J.G. Brouwer of Trinity church and Rev. Keuning, the local pastor, were in charge. Interment was at the local cemetery.
Alton Democrat 1934-02-09.