January 7, 2022.In Memoriam: Dave Henise (79), USA.The Henise family members were André Rieu fans from the beginning. The photo on the left was taken during a Meet & Greet, following a concert in Cincinnati (USA) in 2005.In 2007 we personally met the Henisees in Maastricht. At that time fans who knew each other from Sonja’s translations website (it is still there, click HERE), guestbook “the Harmony Parlor”) and wore a red rose corsage, which was a way fans could recognize each other. Facebook back then did not yet exist. The closest of friendships were formed during those first years.Pictures below: left: Dave, his wife Suzie and Ingrid (Suzie’s sister). Right: the fan picnic in Maastricht 2007 (with Sue).
In September of that year (2007) Ruud and I planned a holiday to the USA, visiting a few of our friends in California: John/Bobbie, Ruth/Jim and Dave/Suzie. We have the most wonderful memories from that holiday. The Henisees took us for a boat trip on Lake Almanor and to the Lassen Volcanic National Park. We also met Suzie’s lovely mother Julie Spengler (82 years old in 2007) who was the biggest André fan of the family. She organized André Rieu parties with friends and neighbors, with refreshments, at her home.
Dave was one of the initiators of the yearly “Wheel around Lake Almanor Festival” to raise money in order to buy wheelchairs and hand cycles for disabled people. In 2007 we participated in the 10 years jubilee of the wheelchair races around the lake. In 2013 Dave suffered a severe stroke. Due to the stroke Dave was paralyzed on his left side. Suzie took care of him at home for 7 years, and a few years ago he was placed into a care home.In 2022 he suffered another stroke and passed away a few days later.We are so sorry. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family. We wish them strength in bearing this loss during these difficult times. Suzie told us that her mother is still going strong, she is 96 and still lives alone.Much love to all of you, from Ruud and Ineke.
Lassen Volcanic National Park, California, USA.
Ruud’s 52nd birthday was celebrated at home with the Henisees in Lake Almanor, Calfornia.
Suzie’s mother Julie Spengler, lived elsewhere in Ca. but she also had a cabin in Lake Almanor.
March 24, 2022.In Memoriam: Jean Willis (UK)
We are so sorry to hear about Jean’s passing on March 24, 2022. On the picture above Jean and Alan share the fan dinner table with Terry and Linda Kirkman (UK) in 2019. Linda wrote on Facebook: “Those of you who remember Jean Willis, who with her husband Alan was a regular visitor at the London and Maastricht concerts, as well as sometimes in the USA, where her sister lives out there, will be sorry to hear that she passed away yesterday after fighting cancer for several months. Her dearest wish had been to attend the London concerts in May, but sadly it was not to be”.We met them in the course of several years in Maastricht. Jean was a lovely lady. The photo with the red roses was taken in 2018. The bouquet was sent to her by André Rieu Productions, for winning an André quiz. She was very proud of that! Red roses from André!!!Our thoughts and deepest sympathy go out to Alan, who has to miss his wife for 62 years, and the family. We wish them much strength to bear the loss. Dear Jean, rest in peace.
Suze Peedell on Facebook:April 21st 2022:It is with great sadness that I need to inform the Harmony Parlor group of the death of our group member Moira Harwood.Moira died suddenly and unexpectedly on Thursday 21 April (by a sad coincidence it was her 58th Birthday), just a few hours after attending Andre's concert in Manchester. She wrote to me in the early hours of Thursday morning to tell me that she had really enjoyed the concert.
In Memoriam:Moira Harwood, (58), UK.
We are so very sorry to hear this sad news. Our sincere condolences to all her family and friends. Rest in peace Moira.
March 29, 2022.In Memoriam: Jennifer Lauch (77) UK.Linda Myatt (from the USA) on Facebook:“On March 29, 2022, my friend Jennifer Lauch passed away after a long battle with cancer.She was a good friend and we had such fun times together, both in Maastricht and in the UK. Many times we would message back and forth, even late at night. I shall miss her very much. The cancer took her. She once told me that she posted all the details, so they might help some one else. God bless you, my dear friend”.Jennifer attended the Maastricht concerts in 2012, 13, 14 and 15. May she rest in peace.
From left to right: Ineke, Linda, Jennifer, Marcel Falize.
27 May 2022.In Memoriam:Alijda Huisert-Smit (99) NL.(Sonja Harper’s mother).
May 28, 2022.Sonja on Facebook:“Sadly my sweet wonderful Mom did not quite make her 100th birthday (July 2). She peacefully passed away yesterday morning. My brother and I were with her. She was serenaded by the beautiful song of a black bird when she left. I am thankful I was in the Netherlands and able to talk to her before she lost consciousness. My sincere thanks to my friends who sent her a card. She did enjoy the ones she was able to see before she passed”.Ruud and Ineke:“We are so sorry to hearthe sad news. Our sincere condolences to Sonja, Eric and the family.
Toronto 2007.With Carmen and Cassandra
2005 First Vrijthof concert
The Hague 2015
The Hague 2015
Sonja hails from The Hague in the Netherlands andher mother lived there a long time. That’s why we regularly met them when Sonja was in Holland to visit her mother, since The Hague is our hometown too. Sonja’s parents were André Rieu fans from the beginning and Sonja started the first André Rieu fan website (http://www.andrerieutranslations.com/) from the USA where she lived at that time, in 2002.The website contains a lot of information. She stopped in 2008 but it is still in the air. Sue Berry and John de Jong took over and continued “the Harmony Parlor,” with big success, until now.Alijda loved to attend the concerts, she was many years in Maastricht and traveled to the USA many times. We'll always remember her enthusiasm and positivity on the days that we met in The Hague or somewhere else in the world. Sonja: Love, hugs and much strength to bear the loss. She will be missed”.
From Facebook:Mara Murphy (Sonja’s daughter): “I am glad you were there, mom. We were lucky to have her as long as we did. No words can express how much she will be missed.”Sue Berry: “I am so glad you made it there to be with her in the end. My heart is with you girl. You know what an amazing women I thought she was and you have so many wonderful memories of her now to keep in your heart forever. Sending my Love to you”.Alice Leung: “Oh! Dutch girl, my heartfelt sympathy goes out to you and your family, but I am glad you and your brother were there with her as she left peacefully. Now she would get some good rest and then off to a new beginning. Hope the card I sent her two weeks ago gave her a smile in time. Love and hugs”.(Sonja’s reply: It did, Alice. She saw it and laughed. She remembered you well and our adventure in Toronto. Thanks so much.)