Our beloved father, Baba, and uncle died on March 18, 2013, in Salt Lake City, Utah.
Harold was born on February 4, 1921 in Salt Lake City to Frank I. Kooyman and Elisabeth van der Toom Kooyman, both from the Netherlands. He was the youngest of seven children who grew up in a stately house on Quince Street and spent their winters sledding down the steep hill that is 300 North before being slowed by the sawdust and bales of hay at the bottom.
When he was eight, he moved to Rotterdam when his father was called to be a Mission President. He learned to speak Dutch proficiently, and always spoke fondly of his time among his extended family on the islands of Vlieland and Terschelling. He remained in touch with his cousins there throughout his life.
While a proud Dutchman by birth, his love for his wife, Vivian Barry, made him an honorary Irishman by choice. He met her while stationed at the U.S. Coast Guard base in New London, Connecticut during World War II. It was literally love at first sight. They were married on June 20, 1942, and remained so for almost 69 years, until Vivian died.
After the war, they crisscrossed the country before settling in Salt Lake City. While attending the University of Utah, he joined the Naval Reserve, and was called to active duty in Japan for the Korean War "before the ink was dry on his papers," as he used to say. One of his fondest memories was helping a Japanese Boy Scout troop learn about the United States. Years later, in the early 1990s, one of those boy scouts came to the United States for a medical conference, and travelled to Salt Lake City to see him again.
Harry loved his work for Commercial Shearing, where he was Manager of Purchasing and Traffic. He also served as the President for the Transportation Club of Salt Lake City, and the Key Toastmasters Club. But during those years of work, what he loved most of all were annual trips to New York and the east coast, early mornings on the golf course, and grilling in the shade of the black walnut tree that he planted behind his house.
Harry and Vivian loved exploring new places, and, upon retirement, travelled to Europe many times. But they used to say that the best part of any trip was the ticket that brought them home to the Wasatch Mountains and the Salt Lake Valley.
What the details of Harry's life don't adequately convey is the size of his heart and the depth of his character. He was a man of true integrity, and lived his values daily. He helped anyone-friends, neighbors, family-who needed it. No task was too big or too small. Everyone was his friend and his friends were everywhere.
Harry is survived by his daughter, Elisabeth (Kent), son Barry (JoAnn), granddaughter Jennifer (Aaron), grandson Jonathan (Alexis), and three great-grandchildren he adored: Max, Vivian, and Harrison. He is also survived by his step-grandchildren Jeff (Angie), Angie (Jeremy), Jennifer (Ryan), and Jonathan (Latice) who blessed him with 17 additional great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his wife Vivian, parents, and siblings, Ray, Florence, Lucile, Hilda, Ruby, and Earl.
The family thankfully acknowledges the compassionate care and support offered by the staff at CareSource Home Health and Hospice, especially Debrah. In lieu of flowers, please consider donations to the CareSource Charitable Foundation.
A funeral service will be held at Neil O'Donnell and Sons Mortuary, 372 East 100 South, on Saturday, March 23, 2013 at noon, and family and friends may gather at 11:00 a.m. Burial at Mt. Calvary Catholic Cemetery, 4th Avenue and T Street.
Published in Salt Lake Tribune on Mar. 21, 2013