Hendrik HULSHOFF

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Born in Friesland, Netherlands, on February 1, 1933, Hendrik Hulshoff passed away at his home in the Glen Ellen area on September 29, 2012. Hendrik and his family faced many hardships during the Nazi occupation. His memories of the brutality of the Nazis towards his family's Jewish neighbors informed Hendrik's respect for all people and creeds. His best subject in school was English, which served him well when he emigrated to the United States in the early 1960s. Hendrik was fluent in Frisian, Dutch, French, and German, as well as English. In spite of, or maybe due to, the privations of the war years, Hendrik developed a deep love of art, dance, film, theater, music, and opera that sustained him throughout his life. With his many friends and family, Hendrik found a way to savor the very best in all the arts. For many years, he was an usher at the San Francisco Opera. Hendrik was an inveterate traveler and visited many countries during his lifetime; many of the trips were organized through his San Francisco Opera friends, Tom and Bill. Perhaps his most special gift was entertaining family and friends in his home. He was a superb host, conversationalist and loyal friend. As a result, friends and family constantly invited him to dinner parties and gatherings. No one will forget his traditional Frisian dishes. Before emigrating to the United States, Hendrik apprenticed as a waiter at one of the grand hotels in the Hague. There he served royalty, foreign dignitaries, and celebrities. The rest of his life he made his family and friends feel that they were royalty. Elegance characterized everything he did. Hendrik's first position in the Bay Area was as a butler for an ARAMCO executive. Hendrik left that position to work as a hair dresser, a career that he pursued for fifty years. He styled and cut the hair of some clients for more than 40 years. In Santa Rosa, he and Gabor made a hair cut a continental delight. Wherever Hendrik worked his co-workers and clients became fast friends. Whether it was the High Fever Follies, a costume party, or a co-worker's birthday, Hendrik made it fun for one and all. Hendrik made Leeuwarden, Friesland, an unofficial sister city of Santa Rosa. Frisian nieces and nephews stayed with him for months at a time. His dear niece, Fre, who cared for him in his final days, lived with him for one school year, attending Ursuline High School in the late 1970s. His mother, Mem, visited so often that she had many lifelong friends here. Many Santa Rosans have visited Leeuwarden to see the canals and landmarks that Hendrik spoke of so vividly and lovingly. Hendrik loved his family and friends. He selflessly cared for his good friends, Jimmy and Pat, and Arthur, when they needed him. His many friends want to acknowledge the gentle care provided Hendrik by his cousins, Ben and Elizabeth, his nieces, Fre and Karin, and his sister, Tjally, all of whom traveled to the Valley of the Moon to be with him this past year. Hendrik was a very rich man. His family and many friends, who include Mary Jo and Gabor, Jennifer, Kathy and Brien, Therese, Carl,Ken, Ron, Sarah, Kelly, Tom and Evelyn, Trish and Topper, Nick, and many others will miss him deeply. But they will listen to beautiful music and remember the happy times, and they will reflect on the words Hendrik lived by: "SMILE- For every minute you are miserable in your life, you are wasting 60 seconds." A celebration of Hendrik's life was held at his home on October 1st. Memorial donations may be made to Pet's Life Line, 19686 8th St East, Sonoma, CA.
Published Online in the Press Democrat from Oct. 9 to Oct. 12, 2012
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