Obituary of Elisabeth F. Kurz
Elisabeth F. Kurz, 92, of Newtown, PA died on October 19, 2019 at the Pennswood Village retirement community.
A memorial service will be held at Yardley United Methodist Church, 300 Langhorne Rd., Yardley, PA on October 26 at 11:00 a.m. with Reverend Cynthia Skripak officiating. Burial will be private.
Elisabeth was born on July 9, 1927in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, the only child of Johan Frederik Ankersmit and Cornelia Elisabeth Bredius. Her mother died when Elisabeth was 8 years old and her father when she was 15. She went to live with her aunt Anna Ankersmit and two older cousins Tini and Riek in Bussum and attended Godelinde high school in Hilversum. She subsequently entered nurse's training at a tuberculosis sanatorium for children in Blaricum. After leaving for medical reasons, she went to library school in Amsterdam and became qualified as a librarian. She came with her first husband Edward DeVries to North America in 1952, eventually coming to live in Stanton, NJ.
In 1982 she married Dr. George Kurz and worked with him in his ophthalmology practice in Flemington, NJ as an ophthalmic assistant, then as a Certified Ophthalmic Technician and office manager. Following retirement in 1992, she became active in the Flemington Area Food Pantry and various programs of the Flemington Presbyterian Church. For many years she had a leadership role in the church's homeless shelter program, Interfaith Hospitality Network (now called Family Promise). Her strong concern for homeless persons grew out of knowing that her own mother had grown up in the Amsterdam city orphanage.
In 1983 she participated with her husband in a scientific exchange in China, where she gave a lecture on the Role of Ophthalmic Technicians. In 1986 they travelled to Tanzania where she gave lectures about eye examination to student nurses.
In 1996 in the archives of the Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum in Jerusalem Elisabeth discovered a record of the death in 1943 of her Jewish step-mother, age 47, who had been taken by the Nazis in 1942, and sent to the Sobibor concentration camp in Poland.
In 2002 Elisabeth wrote her memoirs in a book entitled Oma (Dutch for grandmother) for all of her grandchildren.
Since 2006 she and her husband have lived at Pennswood Village.
Elisabeth had a life-long love of literature and classical music.
Elisabeth is survived by her husband George, her daughter Barbara Henkind and granddaughters Sarah Henkind and Rebecca Henkind of Naples, FL, as well as step-daughters Ruthann Kurz-Peterson of Pomona, CA and Carolyn Steely of Los Osos, CA, step-sons Andrew Kurz and his wife Valerie of Flemington, NJ and John Kurz and his wife Dorothy of Rocky Point, NC and step-granddaughters Kaitlyn Peterson of Pomona, CA and Melissa Simmons of Hickory, NC and step-grandsons James Kurz and his wife Jessica of Brooklyn, NY, Daniel Kurz and his wife Preshita of Philadelphia, PA., and Joshua Kurz and his wife Amanda of Clinton, NC.
Memorial donations may be made to Family Promise of Hunterdon County, 8 Bartles Corner Rd., Ste. 11, Flemington, NJ 08822.