April 27, 1928 – February 6, 2019
Ernest Janssen, born April 27, 1928, in Yoakum, Texas, to Henry Eddie Janssen and Augusta Gerjes Janssen, was the youngest son in a family that included 5 siblings. Ernest’s parents predeceased him, as did his brother, Alfred Janssen and his sister Evelyn “Sissy” Stojanik. He is survived by his siblings, Edna Stanford of Ganado, Walter Janssen (Evelyn) of Ganado, and Velma “Baby” Howard (Fred) of Cleveland, along with a whole host of nieces, nephews, and more special friends than he could count! He is also survived by his loving wife of 53 wonderful years, Mary Janssen, and his three children, Jenice Williamson, Gary Janssen, and Gregg Lancaster and Gregg’s wife, Eva, and by his grandchildren, Timothy Janssen (Cody), Rebecca Hetzer (Kevin), Courtney Hudgins (Neil), Lisa Janssen, Shea Williamson, and 9 great grandchildren. Ernest made this world a better place for 90 years, 9 months and 9 days, when God decided He needed him for some Heavenly activity, and took him home on February 6, 2019. Ernest served his country as an artilleryman in the U.S. Army, for three years and three months as a Reservist, before enlisting as an active duty soldier from 1953 until he was honorably discharged as a Corporal in 1955, during the Korean Conflict. In 1973, he was baptized at The Church of Christ in Jersey Village, where he remained a loyal member until his death. Ernest was a kind and gentle man who spent his life doing for others. Whether volunteering at his church home, helping neighbors, or making things in his workshop for friends and family, he always thought of others first.... and put them first. He was a farmer, tree trimmer, Army soldier, fisherman, little league coach, softball player, bowler, horseshoe tosser, domino player, gardener, construction worker and carpenter, but mostly he was a wonderful husband, father, and mentor to many. He was an avid sports fan, especially of the Texans, Astros, and Rockets. After working as a professional tree trimmer, he worked for Reed Roller Bit and Hughes Oil Tool as a machinist, constructed steel buildings for McRan Steel Buildings, built cooling towers for Marley Cooling Towers and delivered drinks for 7 Up Bottling Company. He retired from Marley Cooling Towers. Ernest met and married the love of his life, Mary Wiltshire Lancaster, on June 12, 1965. She made his life complete. Some marry into money. He didn’t, but what he married into was worth far more than money. He married the love of his life and gained the added bonus of inheriting her son, Gregg Lancaster, who he took as his own. This marriage of over 53 years was as enduring as he was. In his later years, he was described by his doctors as the “Miracle Man” for his ability to overcome more medical events than anyone they had ever seen. In 2001, a grandmal seizure shattered both of his shoulders so badly that he was barely able to use his arms. Despite this, he overcame and was able to lead a full and functional life. He also overcame Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS), a precursor to Leukemia, but after many years of battling, including receiving 149 units of blood in transfusions, he went into remission and the medical professionals could not explain how this could have happened. He had been given about 6 months to live... in 2011!! The explanation was really pretty easy... Mary told them, “We pray a lot and our prayers and those of many others were answered!” The doctor acknowledged that there was no medical explanation, so the prayers were a better explanation than anything he could offer. Ernest and Mary thought then and always that, “God was in charge then, now and always will be.” In 2018, he suffered a serious 3rd degree burn for which he had a 3% chance of survival. With God’s blessings and the doting, loving care of his wife, The Miracle Man did it again! Not only did he survive, he returned home and resumed the life he had before the burn. Ernest,”The Cool Cat” Janssen, having used up all of his 9 lives, passed away peacefully in his sleep on February 6, 2019, after having had his family at his bedside for days after he was stricken with pneumonia. 90 years, 9 months, and 9 days... 999, a number often associated spiritually with divine completion and new beginning. The family of Ernest Janssen wants to thank Dr. Roger Schultz of Memorial Clinical Associates, and Memorial Hermann Hospital System-Memorial City ICU nurses, for the love, compassion, and care shown to Ernest and his family. They also thank John Gooch, Minister, John Kyser, Song Director, and T Traweek, Video Technician for providing service for Ernest’s memorial service. In lieu of flowers, contributions in Ernest’s memory may be made to the Church of Christ in Jersey Village Building Fund, at 8810 Jones Road, Houston, TX 77065, or to a charity of your choice.
Ernest is survived by his siblings, Edna Stanford of Ganado, Walter Janssen (Evelyn) of Ganado, and Velma “Baby” Howard (Fred) of Cleveland, along with a whole host of nieces, nephews, and more special friends than he could count!
He is also survived by his loving wife of 53 wonderful years, Mary Janssen, and his three children, Jenice Williamson, Gary Janssen, and Gregg Lancaster and Gregg’s wife, Eva, and by his grandchildren, Timothy Janssen (Cody), Rebecca Hetzer (Kevin), Courtney Hudgins (Neil), Lisa Janssen, Shea Williamson, and 9 great grandchildren.
- Visitation Saturday, February 9, 2019
- Funeral Service Saturday, February 9, 2019
- Graveside Service Saturday, February 9, 2019
February 9, 2019
Here's another picture of Uncle Ernest and Aunt Mary with Chenenna in 2010.
February 9, 2019
We love you Uncle Ernest and are so happy that you came into our family. Your kind, gentle ways made an impression on everyone who knew you. You will be missed. Here's a fond memory we have of you in 2010 at our Family Party at the Lake.