Anna Mae de Graaf, 84, of Ransom Canyon, Texas went to be with the Lord on Sunday, March 10, 2019 after her brave battle with cancer these last few months. She was born at home in El Monte, California on September 4, 1934 to Henry and Carrie Van Dam. She was the oldest of four children, brother Pete (Jan) Van Dam, sister Mary Lou (Marvin) VandenBerg and brother Will (Valerie) Van Dam. While growing up, she spent much of her time with her extended family in Southern California. She loved being on the family dairy, surrounded by many cousins, aunts, uncles and siblings.
In her teenage years, she met the love her life, Gerrit de Graaf at church, shortly after he immigrated from the Netherlands. She graduated from El Monte High School in 1952 and they were married in 1953. One of their favorite things to do together was to sing in their church choir and sing duets at special events, they loved to praise the Lord! They had five children in El Monte, California before moving to Ojai, California and raising their family there. She had the gift of hospitality and even in a tiny home, there was always room for more. Later they moved to Corona, California; El Paso, Texas; Roswell, New Mexico and most recently, Ransom Canyon, Texas, where they were surrounded by a wonderful community. The places she lived never mattered as much as the people who were around her.
She is survived by her five children: Gary (Donna) de Graaf of Pixley, California; Debbi (Larry) Kelley of Roswell, New Mexico; Barb (Brad) Bouma of Ransom Canyon, Texas; Carolyn (Jon) Veenendaal of Lubbock, Texas and Brian (Linda) de Graaf of Dexter, New Mexico; fifteen grandchildren and thirty-two great grandchildren (with two more on the way). All seventy-two of us belonged to her and she made each of us feel like we were her the most important person in her life. Spending time with her children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and extended family was her favorite place to be. Anna Mae’s greatest joy was to know that her loved ones are walking in the truth of Jesus Christ.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Henry and Carrie Van Dam; her husband, Gerrit de Graaf; brother, Pete Van Dam; and son-in-law, Jon Veenendaal. We will celebrate her life on Saturday, March 30th at 10am at the Christian Life Center on the campus of First United Methodist Church in downtown Lubbock, Texas.
We'd like to thank you all for your support for our family, we feel so loved. In lieu of flowers, we ask that donations be given to these organizations on her behalf:
Ransom Canyon Fellowship Church, 5412 Ransom Road, Ransom Canyon, TX 79366; Operation HOPE in Lubbock: http://operationhopeusa.org/donate; Gideon's Roswell Camp https://www.gideons.org/donate