Robert John Van Roekel
Zoon van Louis Augustine Van Roekel en Jeanette Vriezelaar geboren 26-5-1925 USA IA Pella
Trouwt 20-12-1946 USA IA Ames, gescheiden 1974 van Marilyn Franks, geboren 8-8-1925 US Michigan Metz
Trouwt 20-10-1979 USA CA Redlands Jane Elizabeth Smith, geboren 12-8-1934 USA IA West Union
Kinderen van Robert en Marilyn:
He was an excellent, well respected architect, and when he got older, he wanted to do something to "give back" to Pella, IA. He decided since the freeway had bypassed the city and took some business away from it, that he could help them bring interest back into the town by building an authentic Dutch working windmill.
He researched and traveled to the Netherlands a few times, learning all he could about windmills and their mechanics and drawing up blueprints to present to the Chamber of Commerce in Pella for his proposal. One trip to Holland he wanted to try and find some Van Roekel relatives who had not left for America. He collected the information we had and went hunting. No luck - the only person he could find who knew any Van Roekels said that they had all left - and that the only other Van Roekel guy they had known was just crazy. We laughed a lot about his story.
Unfortunately, Pella never accepted his proposed plans for the windmill - decided it was too expensive, even after he had arranged the land to be donated and all. He gave the blueprints to Pella as a gift, but they never got their working Dutch Windmill from Granddad VR.
Wendy Van Roekel, Posted: 20 June 2008 to Jaap van Steenbeek