Obituary: Leestma, Melba Ruth
Melba Ruth (De Boer) Leestma completed her earthly pilgrimage of 83 years from 1929 - 2012, on April 30. We sadly release the natural ties to our wife, mother, sister, and friend. But we anticipate with holy joy, the resurrection reunion with her and all who have gone before, and those who will follow in the faith in the Christ of the Gospel of God.
She was the fourth daughter in a family of five girls. Three sisters, Gertrude, Margaret and Norma and her parents Rudolph and Fanny De Boer preceded her in death. They lived in Grand Rapids and Grosse Point Park, Michigan. A younger sister Carolyn lives in Bloomington, Minnesota.
Melba married her husband, Herman in 1950 during his seminary training for pastoral ministry. She fulfilled her role in parish ministry with him for forty years in Michigan, Illinois, California, Washington and Minnesota. She birthed and nurtured five sons and two daughters: David, Frances, Glenys, Randall, Harley, Jon and Franklin. The extended family includes four daughters-in-law, one son-in-law, and 11 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. “Her children rise up and call her blessed; her husband also and he praises her:” (Proverbs 31:28)
She was always indefatigably challenged and chose to complete her formal education, after her children matured, by earning a Masters Degree in Marriage and Family Counseling from Whitworth University. For 25 years she enriched the lives of many in this professional capacity with sensitive Christian dedication and service to her clients and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Throughout her lifetime she enjoyed excellent health. After undergoing spinal fusion in 2007, subsequent physical limitation reduced her activities. After several hospitalizations a serious compromise in her digestive system was uncovered and loss of appetite resulted in rapid decline and eventual demise.
Today we who knew her recognize with gratitude the precious gifts with which the Lord endowed her. She seized the days of her life with artfulness, energy and enthusiasm. We praise God with all who knew and loved this beautiful daughter of God. Hallelujah!
A memorial service to celebrate her life will be held on Monday May 21, 2012 at 1:00 PM at First Presbyterian Church, 318 South Cedar Street, Spokane, WA 99201. In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts are suggested to Anna Ogden Hall or Focus on the Family and may be sent to the church.