Children of Izak van Gorkom and Janna Elisabeth Klaassen (generation XI-i86).
Izak was son of Izak van Gorkom and Ingetje Maria van der Hoek (generation X-i53) and grandson of Izak van Gorkom and Louisa Roä (generation IX-i18).
Jacques, the eldest son of Izak van Gorkom and Janna Elisabeth Klaassen (known as Jacques and Betsie, generation XI-i86), was born in Weltevreden, a suburb of Batavia in the Dutch East Indies, on 2 February 1921. Batavia is nowadays Djakarta, Indonesia. Weltevreden means "very satisfied". Like most colonials the family lived like aristocrats, having many servants. As a consequence Jacques was raised for a good deal by the baboo, the Indonesian nanny. He grew up in the tropical land of myth and mystery till he was six. In 1927 his father, warrant officer in the KNIL (Royal Netherlands-Indian Army), retired after which the family went back to the homeland.
Just some postcard from Weltevreden, dated 3 March 1911, to give
an idea of the colonial architecture of the Dutch.
It was quite a change for him. Being used to a very protective environment in a very tropical country he suddenly found himself in wet, cold and crowded little Holland. He would never really adjust. In Dordrecht he went to the H.B.S. (Hogere Burger School), more or less the highest education you could get on secundary school level. As he preferred canoeing in the vast marshes of the Biesbosch to studying arythmetics, it took him till 1940 before he graduated. By then the Second World War had broken out. As a son of a warrant officer he was supposed to go to the Koninklijke Militaire Academie (Royal Military Academy) in Breda, not far from Dordrecht, to become an officer as well. Because of the German occupation this wasn't possible anymore of course. In 1942 he travelled to Switzerland, illegally passing borders and occupied territory, but came back to ask the girl he had fallen in love with to come with him, as he intended to stay in Switzerland. By then all single men were forced by the Germans to work in German factories, good enough a reason to escape to a neutral country.
Finally in November 1942, Jacques, his future wife and their friends Piet van den Nieuwenhof (Peter) and Aly Turkstra (Alice) escaped to Switzerland. The full story of this escape is told on www.hoteldesnarcisses.net. Jacques married the woman who had come with him, Alida Frederika Batens, in Montreux on 15 June 1943. She was born in The Hague on 14 June 1922 as the daughter of Petrus Johannes Batens and Louise Marie Sustrath. Her family called her Ada, but Jaques named her Li, because of her rather dark complexion. Their friends Piet and Alice married on the same day.
In 1959 there were four children. Li and Jack, as Jacques called himself since the war, decided to emigrate to Australia. It was the intention to go to Perth, but somehow they got stuck in a temporary lodging near Sydney. Alida called this object in which the family lived the chicken shed. It was in St. Mary's, near Penrith, nowadays a suburb of Sydney. Penrith enjoyed world fame for two weeks during the Olympics of 2000 because of Lake Penrith, where the rowing matches were held. Quite soon the writer of this page was born, nearly eleven years after the youngest of his siblings. And quite soon Jack and Li were able to buy a new home in Werrington, also near Penrith, at the dead end of an unpaved street, bordering the Australian bush. In September 1964 the family returned to the Netherlands, stayed for a year with Li's mother (Louise Sustrath) in The Hague and then moved to Delft. There Jack found a job as head of the students administration of the Technical University Delft, then called TH Delft, thanks to his excellent command of English, German and French.
Already at the beginning of the fifties Jack and Li had turned to all sorts of "occult" interests, like tarot, astrology, eastern philosophy and so on. In 1973 Jack wrote the book Tarot - leidraad voor het leven (Tarot - guideline for life), published by Servire in Wassenaar. It was rather successful as all 5000 copies of the first edition were sold. Jack died in Delft on 2 January 2000, when the new millennium was just thirty hours old. In April 2005, Li (Ada) moved to the nursing home Eben Haëzer in Amsterdam. She died on 16 June 2011—two days after her birthday—at the age of 89. More about their children you can find here.
The story of Jack's life has a remarkable parallel to the one of Albert, which can be found below on this same page. Albert too joined the Allied Forces during WW2 and afterwards he emigrated to Australia as well.
Just like his older brother, Cornelis (called Cor, Corre or Kees) was born in Weltevreden, a suburb of Batavia in the Dutch East Indies. Batavia is nowadays Djakarta, Indonesia. His date of birth was 7 November 1923. On 9 September 1955 he married Gijsberdina Adriana Spits (Dini). After their marriage they emigrated to Canada, but returned when Dini was expecting the first of their two children. Dini died in Wageningen on 22 December 1986 and Kees in Wageningen as well on 27 August 1999, four months before his elder brother. The children are mentioned on the page about generation XIII.
Kees with his daughter Jacqueline on 23 November 1958.
Maria (known as Mimi) was born in Dordrecht on Christmas Day, 25 December 1930. She married Cornelis Pieter Puister, who was born on 3 January 1921. There are two sons, called Matthijs Cornelis and Pieter-Joost.
Johanna (originally known as Jo) was born in Dordrecht on 26 June 1932. She married Hermanus Smits (Herman) in Dordrecht on 29 october 1952. He was born in Dordrecht on 13 august 1926, as son of Jacobus Smits and Martijntje Versteeg. Johanna called herself Han in the second part of her life. She died in Rotterdam on 17 august 1992. Her husband Herman died in Dordrecht on 13 october 1985.
Jo and Herman had two children. Elisabeth Martijntje Smits (Liesbeth) was born in Dordrecht on 13 June 1953. In 1993 she married Peter van Deelen. She died in Amstelveen in 2008, only 54 years old. The second child is son Jaap Smits, born in 1958. He is married to Loes and has two daughters: Irma Smits and Ilse Smits.