Gates, Kingsley & Gates Smith Salsbury Funeral Directors

4220 South Sepulveda Blvd, Culver City, CA


Johanna Philippine Benjamins- Halkema

August 16, 1920October 11, 2019

Johanna Philippine Benjamins-Halkema, beloved wife, mother, grandmother, great grandmother and great great grandmother, passed away peacefully on 11 October 2019 after a long fight with Alzheimer’s. She was 99.

Johanna was born on August 16,1920 at Wedi Birit, a tobacco plantation. During World War II she was a prisoner of war near Surakarta, Java. She was a nurse’s aide after the war.

During a military parade, she was captivated by the big smile of Willy Benjamins as he rode by standing out of the turret hatch of a military tank. His friendly smile and his rank as Sergeant-Major in the Panzertroepen of the Royal Dutch Indies Army (KNIL) sealed the deal; they were married in 1947. They emigrated from Indonesia to the Netherlands in 1953 and in 1959, they immigrated to the United States, settling in Los Angeles, California

Johanna was preceded in death by Willy, her husband of 53 years. Both Willy and Johanna were long time members of St. Gerard Majella in Culver City, CA and active in various Dutch clubs and a Dutch-Indonesian dance group.

She is survived by her seven children, Huibart, Stephan, Peter, Wiltine, Roy, Esther and Jutia, her eight grandchildren Kristen, Alyssa, Danielle, Nicholas, Adrian, Erik, Joanna, Christopher, her six great grandchildren, Rebecka, Donahvan, Nash, Nova, Jaylyn, Stone, and her great-great grandchild Nora.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association by clicking the link below.


  • Visitation Friday, October 18, 2019
  • Funeral Service Saturday, October 19, 2019
  • Reception to Follow Funeral Service Saturday, October 19, 2019


Johanna Philippine Benjamins- Halkema

have a memory or condolence to add?

Paula Shaw

October 18, 2019

Oma was such a welcoming and loving woman from the first time I met her as an awkward 10-year-old at Bill and Wiltine’s wedding. When I was pregnant with Devin, we used ultrasound to determine his gender. Her hilarious quip, “there is no privacy anywhere”, still brings a smile to my face. Love and miss her!

Paula Tarasenko Shaw

Kevin and Alyssa Swartz

October 16, 2019

We love you Oma. Alyssa remembers the fun summers at your house. We also recall the wonderful dinner you made when we ate dinner at your house. We know you are with the Lord and Opa now and are very happy.