The family of Peter De Gelder are saddened to announce his passing at the Lakeridge Health Hospital on September 24, 2020. Peter passed surrounded by the love of his family in his 93 year. Peter was born in a small town called Hazerswoude in Holland, the year was 1928. He was the first born son of Mr. and Mrs. De Gelder who had four more sons and one daughter. Peter, like anyone else, went to elementary school. In later years, as Peter grew up as a teenager, experienced living during the difficult years of German occupation in his town, as well as the entire country and the rest of Europe. After the war, Peter held jobs at various local nurseries. After reaching the age of 19 he was drafted into the Dutch army. Into the late 1940’s Peter was deployed as a soldier to the Dutch East Indies, as were so many other boys his age. They were sent over to put down political upheavals. Since Indonesia, at the time, was a colony of Holland. Therefore, the Dutch government felt it was necessary to send troops. Eventually, Indonesia gained their independence and Peter was home again in the year 1950. Like so many ex-soldiers, Peter wasn’t happy with the life style back in Holland. By the time 1953 came around he had enough of it and decided to immigrate to Canada. He found a job working on a farm as a farmhand. It was in a small town called Otterville in South Western Ontario. As time went on Peter learned of a good paying job at G.M. in Oshawa. He landed a job there and moved to the town of Bowmanville. He was employed there for 30 years and at the age of 60 he decided to retire. In all those years Peter never entertained the thoughts of marriage. He was just content with his lifestyle as it was. When Peter retired he spent most of his time in the line of exercise. He enjoyed swimming, cycling, walking long walks and also practiced some yoga. At every family gathering Peter had to show his ability to touch his toes without bending his knees and he never failed to mention that while swimming at the pool he could dive from one end of the pool to the other….underwater! Reading was also his favorite past time as well as, listening to classical music, playing his favourite games on the computer, and colouring. Peter said “I just run out of time to do everything!”Even though he lived a life of his own, he certainly was not a lonely man.Peter will be deeply missed by all of his extended family and friends in Canada and Holland. The families of Peter do want to extend their most sincere gratitude to all of the staff at Traditions of Durham Retirement Home. All of their love, care and support towards Peter will never be forgotten. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a private family service will be held at a later date.
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