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Griffin Leggett Healey & Roth Funeral Home

5800 W 12Th St, Little Rock, AR

OBITUARY

Gerrit Gorter

June 27, 1952November 7, 2019

Gerrit James Gorter, born June 27, 1952 in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, died peacefully at home on November 7, 2019 surrounded by those who adored him. During the last few weeks of his life, he made sure he was always within arm’s reach of a pen and sharp pencil, the NY Times crossword puzzle, scratch-off crossword puzzles, his morning devotional, a daily calendar of madcap things people say, and a draft copy of his recently completed second book. Aside from the love of his family, Gerrit’s true passion was for writing, and reading the writing of great authors. He loved to share books and eagerly awaited the release of the next Pulitzer Prize winning book in fiction. His office bookshelves were a testament to his love of writing. He met his wife of 36 years, Kim, during night classes at UALR. As he climbed the ramp of Stabler Hall (on crutches), she was struck by his bright smile, laughing eyes and abundant charm. She fell for him immediately and they married a year later. They have two daughters, Anna Gorter (Gavin), of Lakewood, Colorado and Mary Andres (Travis) of Dallas, Texas. This past July, Gerrit had the strength to walk his daughter, Mary, down the aisle and pass her hand and heart to the man of her dreams. A month earlier he had taken a magical trip with his daughter, Anna, as they explored the mountains and cities around Denver. It’s almost impossible to capture in words a man like Gerrit (Ger-Bob to his friends). His love of life was limitless. He woke each morning with a ‘do over’ which he gave to himself and those around him. As his body was failing him, his mind took on new challenges. He learned to play the ukulele and took drumming lessons. He stressed to those around him to be brave, humble, full of grace, and to try something you thought you could never do. And how can we forget his hilarious wit and humor? We all smiled when he entered a room because we knew he was going to share some clever pun or silly dad joke. Lord; he had a million of ‘em! It’s all of these qualities that made Gerrit a unique and a deeply lovable person. We all share a part of him since he shared a part of himself with us. Gerrit is preceded in death by both parents, Faith and Jacobus Gorter. He is survived by other family members, Antje Harris of Little Rock, Jane Manley of Garland, TX, Ed Woods (Heidi) of Warwick, UK, Tom Woods (of the world) and many adoring cousins, nieces, and nephews. Please join us November 16th from 2:00-4:00 pm in a celebration of his life at the Griffin Leggett Healey & Roth Funeral Home, 5800 W 12th Street in Little Rock. If you can’t join us, Gerrit asked that you stop somewhere on that day at 4:20 and listen to Santana’s song, Europa! Ger, we will always love you and never forget you.

Services

  • Celebration of Life Saturday, November 16, 2019

Memories

Gerrit Gorter

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Richard Gorter

November 16, 2019


Gerrit James Gorter, son of the late Jacobus Gorter and Faith Neville Anderson has passed away, a great loss for us all. A great man, a passionate member of our family is no longer amidst us. Born in Cedar Rapids - Iowa - USA, he was also a great "Islander from Terschelling" where his roots came from, we will miss him too. Our deepest sympathy is with his beloved wife Kim and daughters Anna and Mary and with Gavin and Travis their husbands. Gerrit Gorter is in our hearts, he will not be forgotten, we did love him as a "brother". Gerrit was an intelligent man, as his parents, he was always positive and full of joy. He explored his country, wonderful USA, he strolled around in many areas of the globe, Australia, the Pacific, Europa and the Netherlands, especially Terschelling, where his dad, his grandfather Gerrit and many more ancestors were born and lived their lives. Gerrit, your eternal voyage has started, you are amidst the stars, now you are the special twinkling star, who will give us guidance. A wonderful man is gone, may he rest in peace. We will miss you Gerrit, our conversations, apps..more than we can express now.

Richard, Hanny and the children.

Amy Stewart

November 14, 2019

I'm so sad to hear of Gerrit's passing. We were co-workers and fellow writers (and grammar police!) at ABCBS for years, and he always made me smile. I had the pleasure of working directly with him for a year or so before he retired, and I'll never forget, "Let's save some lives, people!" as he'd enter the office every morning.

He is a rare and unique soul.

I pray for comfort for his family during this time.

Kelly Barbee

November 12, 2019

Gerrit (Ger, G-Man) was a co-worker and a friend. We were always up to shenanigans in our department. He would come in each morning yelling, "Save some lives people!" I was very lucky to have known him. He was a funny, witty and caring soul. He always had a smile even dealing with his battle. My prayers go out to his family.
With love, Barbee

Jan M. Smit

November 12, 2019

My dear Gerrit Gorter family,
I'm very sorry Gerrit passed away. The last mail I received from him, Oktober 25th, stated:
'I am comfortable with living with cancer. I will be kept in comfort throughout the duration of my journey. I have everything I need. I am under the care of home health and hospice care. And my beautiful wife Kim. Although I won’t travel to my beloved Terschelling again, I only have to close my eyes to be there. I am so very glad to have met in you an islander of high esteem, son of an islander also highly esteemed'.
He contributed among other things to make it possible to me to release a book on our island Terschelling, to tell the history what happened to us when we were occupied by the Germans during the Second World War. To many of your Americans a very long time ago. Gerrit was born in your beautiful country and behaved as a real American. Nevertheless, we recognized the roots he found in our tiny island in the North Sea. For that reason, he was able to visit the native grounds of his father's family and payed attention to contribute to some historical peculiarities of our island to get realized. We are very grateful in that respect.
I will remember him as a positive representative of the people we owe so much!
Dear Kim and family, he held up as an example for all of us!
Jan M.

Hugo Gorter

November 12, 2019

Dear Kim, Anna and Gavin, Mary and Travis and relatives and friends.
Our sincere condolences with the far to early and sad loss of your husband, father and father in law, my dear cousin Gerrit.
Gerrit and I(Hugo) communicated a lot and had so many things in common. We felt so close, especially with our common background - the Gorter family- and the beautiful Island Terschelling.
I have so many very good memories of Gerrit and you Kim, Anna and Mary, especially after my visits to the USA and hosting you in our house on Terschelling. The Lutine monument repairs and funding were a highlight for Gerrit and so brave of him to travel all the way back to Terschelling.
We hoped to meet again in near future, but fate decided this won't happen.
Normally I would have travelled to Little Rock to attend Gerrit's funeral but my leg problems make this impossible at this moment. I am awaiting surgery soon.
Dear Kim and children please know that we will be with you all in our thoughts during the funeral and receive our warmist feelings and friendship.
Kisses from Clara and Hugo - Terschelling Island, the Netherlands.

Alfreda Summons

November 12, 2019

I am so sadden to hear about Gerrit. One of the sweetest person I've met at ABCBS. I would always pronounce his name wrong! But he never said a word. My deepest sympathies to the family.

Teresa Clayton

November 11, 2019

Gerrit and I became friends during our Leadership Development project back in 2010. He was always so thoughtful, cheerful, and smart. I am so blessed to have known him. He was one -of-a-kind in all good ways. I hope your faith and your memories will comfort you in the loss of this wonderful man.

Missy Kinnear

November 11, 2019

I had the privilege of meeting Gerrit at ABCBS in one of the Business Writing classes and in just that short time it was clear he was an awesome guy. A guy who didn't take one day or one moment for granted. He shared a couple of stories one had us laughing until we cried, the other just had us crying, tenderly. He was bold, smart, fun, caring and not ashamed of the gospel.
I'm by no means THE judge, but on this side Gerrit, WELL DONE GOOD AND FAITHFUL SERVANT!
My thoughts and prayers to the family. <><

Connie West

November 11, 2019

Thoughts and Prayers are with the family. With deepest sympathy.

Connie West

Tana Williams

November 11, 2019

My sincere condolences to Gerrit's family!

I worked with Gerrit at Arkansas Blue Cross & Blue Shield. To say that he was a nice and sincere person would be an understatement.

Gerrit was a true peoples person...if you were in his presences your spirits were sure to be lifted.

Meeting someone as genuine as Gerrit was a true blessing. He will be missed dearly.

RIL Gerrit,
Love Tana

FROM THE FAMILY