HART, CORNELIS "KEES," 84, of Louisville, and previously of Union Hall, VA, died peacefully on December 8, 2012.
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Born and raised in Den Helder, Netherlands, he survived the German occupation and went on to attain degrees in education and foreign languages. After arriving in the United States in 1963 with his young family, Kees went on to teach high school foreign language courses (being fluent in five languages) before entering the field of law enforcement in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
He was a proud leader during his 20-year career that included positions as police officer in Eastern Rockingham County and the City of Harrisonburg, VA and as criminal justice training specialist at the Shenandoah Criminal Justice Training Center and the Academy of Staff Development for the Commonwealth of Virginia.
During Kees' exemplary career he was awarded the Legion of Honor by the American Federation of Police and the Distinguished Police Service Medal by the American Law Enforcement Association in Washington, DC. In 1978, he was named "Police Officer of the Year" in Harrisonburg. After retiring in 1990 with the rank of captain, he settled at Smith Mountain Lake in Union Hall and moved to Louisville in 2005.
Kees' dedication to his career in law enforcement and to his family was the catalyst for the 2005 inauguration of the Louisville Metro Police Foundation, founded by his son GJ, which provides assistance to the brave men and women on the Louisville Metro Police Department.
His deep voice, gift for conversation, and amazing storytelling will be terribly missed. He was an avid soccer fan and loved the outdoors with sailing as his preferred pastime. He was branded a true Kentuckian for his unwavering preference for Maker's Mark.
He is survived by Ann, his wife of 60 years; son, Gerard J. Hart (Heather); daughter, Mickey Steinroth, of The Netherlands; grandchildren, Ashley S. Hart, Hillary Hart, Ashley Scarr Hart and Randall Hart; and all the loving extended Hart family and friends.
The family is most grateful to every person that cared for him including Mark Wheeler, MD, and all the dedicated doctors and caring, loving staff of Baptist Hospital East.
A service celebrating his life will be held at 11a.m. Saturday, December 15, 2012 at Shiloh United Methodist Church, 9611 W. Hwy. 42, Goshen, KY 40026.
In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to the Louisville Metro Police Foundation's -Cornelis Hart Officer in Distress Fund, 982 Eastern Parkway, Box 5, Louisville, KY 40217.
Published in The Courier-Journal from Dec. 11 to Dec. 14, 2012