June 6, 1952 – March 17, 2022
VANDERKOOY, Alice (Elizabeth Maria), born in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, died peacefully at home on Thursday, March 17, in her 70th year. To know her was to love her, and she deeply impacted countless lives as a sister, aunt, friend, and teacher.
Alice was the oldest of six children born to Jaap and Bep Vanderkooy. They immigrated to Canada, settling in Toronto when she was 6 years old. She is remembered by her siblings as being loving, social, and sometimes a little bossy. Her family will always be grateful for her ability to bring them all together – whether it was a sibling week at the cottage, “Chick Weekends” with all her nieces, or the annual Christmas gathering on New Year’s Day. She had a gift for fostering relationships and knew what everyone in her extended family was up to. In the last few years, despite facing her own health challenges, Alice was a great support and caregiver to her Mom, who passed away last summer.
A natural teacher, Alice spent the majority of her career as a French teacher and Guidance Counsellor at TDChristian High School. Students and colleagues recall her as a great listener and someone who authentically cared about them and what was going on in their lives. She was passionate about all things French – language, culture, food and music – and passed that on to many of her French students. As a Guidance Counsellor, Alice had a gift for creating space for anyone who needed comfort, wisdom or simply a break from class.
Alice was also a lifelong learner. Her passions included photography, reading, shopping for new clothes and being active with her friends. She had an unwavering faith and never shied away from deep conversations about God, spirituality and the church. This was especially evident as she faced her own death and was willing to have discussions about her journey and struggles.
Alice embodied grace and strength and will be greatly missed by her dear friend, Thea Andeweg, siblings Jack and Joan, Kaes and Corry, Herman and Pat, Miriam, Paul and Susan, 20 nieces and nephews, 31 great nieces and nephews and her many friends and former students.
Alice’s family would like to thank the team at University Health Network, as well as Dr. Hogan, Dr. Chopra and Ann from Care Partners for their incredible support and healthcare over the past three years. Alice was truly grateful for the care she received and formed many connections with her nurses, doctors and even fellow patients.
Visitation will be held on Monday, March 28 from 2-4pm at Fellowship Christian Reformed Church (800 Burnhamthorpe Road in Etobicoke) followed by a Celebration of Life service. Due to capacity limitations, this in-person service will be by invitation only. We invite you to watch the service by livestream at 7pm at https://www.fellowshipetobicoke.com/live.
Donations to TDChristian High School (Deserving TDChristian Initiatives) or EduDeo Ministries (The Alice Vanderkooy Transforming Education Award) would be welcomed.
If you would like to contact the family to share condolences, notes of encouragement or memories of Alice, you can contact her family c/o Jack Vanderkooy, 30 Waterfront Circle, Collingwood, ON L9Y 4Z3 or [email protected]