Henry G. Braaksma, on June 29, 2020, of Voorhees. Age 82. Beloved husband of Shelly (nee Lyons) for 24 years. Devoted father of Marie Carr. Loving pop of Nicole, Henry, and Jody and great grandpop of Julia. Dear brother of Eleanor Braaksma, Cori Campbell (Bill), and the late William Braaksma. Also survived by many nieces and nephews.
Henry proudly served with the US Army Reserves. He was a member of the Meteor Motorcycle Club and loved the great outdoors. Henry also worked as a heavy equipment mechanic until he retired at 80 years old. He also loved traveling with Shelly and all types of music. Henry will be missed by many.
There will be a visitation from 2pm to 4pm Wednesday afternoon, July 8th, at GARDNER FUNERAL HOME, RUNNEMEDE. Memorial service 4pm at the funeral home.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Henry's memory to Samaritan Healthcare and Hospice, 3906 Church Road, Mount Laurel, NJ 08054.
There are so many things swimming in my head and heart. Yesterday,, my Godfather, Henry Braaksma left this earth.
I am going to try and put into words, how I feel & my thoughts sending prayers to our family.
Uncle Henry officially came into our my family when he married Aunt Marie on his birthday, May 12th, and in fitting fashion, God took him on Aunt Marie's birthday, yesterday, June 29th. I say fitting fashion because Henry loved and loved big! He was meant to be in our family, from the lunches my Grandmom would prepare for Aunt Marie and Aunt Cori in Camden & working at the Shipyard w my Dad's father. There are no coincidences ~ Godinstances!
Family is and was everything! God knew what was in his mind and heart and gave our family a message from Uncle Henry, as he was unable to speak for himself, at the end.
I was the "5th Braaksma" and loved by Uncle Henry like his own. I don't often talk about my life and childhood, but there was a time when family life was rough for me. Uncle Henry was willing to take me his niece and Godchild to live with our family in Woodbury Hts. So, yeah I could've gone to Gateway w my cousins and the Busch kids, who incidentally were "my cousins." Grandma Braaksma and "Uncle" Fr. Francis, treated me as one of them. Lol, Fr. Francis told me when he was in for a family wedding, my marriage was next for him to officiate. Family.
Some things about my Uncle: when he loved, he loved, he kept his word, he was stoic and never complained (even when the accident messed up his leg), he went w the flow and didn't rock the boat, once you were in his heart there you stayed ~ time, distance, right or wrong, there you stayed.
I wish I had our family photos with me here instead of being in Bellmawr. I came across so, so many while going through photos when my parents died last year.
Photos from our childhood and young adulthood of my parents, Grandparents, all our family together. Camden, Woodbury Hts., Bellmawr, amusement parks
The annual cook outs w Braaksma and Busch and The Campbell family. Grandmom (and my mom) bringing massive amounts of macaroni and potato salad & deviled eggs w a special plate of eggs for Henry.
My entire life was with the Braaksma and Busch family with occasional holidays and events with the Campbells. So yes, lots of love and memories.
In addition to his great smile/laugh ~gave great hugs & lol, and in an Italian family, his loud booming voice was a perfect fit. I never heard him utter a curse word stronger than "damn" or a harsh word to anyone in our family.
Many of the memories that Daria Busch, shared yesterday are ones I have as well. Driving in the back of his truck to watch fireworks, Dutch Wonderland & the antique cars, Oohing and Aahing in Crystal Cave, flat tires always on the Schuylkill Expressway, Hershey Park, Super Duper Looper, Great Adventure....all us kids pretending to sleep in Woodbury Hts., before our trip to the park because we heard his footsteps down the hall..
A few that stick out: playing hide and go seek in Woodbury Hts w all the cousins (Braaksma and Busch) & breaking my leg. Trying to hobble up the old red deck and Uncle Henry in his chair and my Dad on the couch laughing and watching TV. Them both telling me not broken because I could walk on it & Uncle Henry having me go up and down the step from the kitchen to the rec room. ***Laughing at us when we thought we won the McDonald's millions, but sitting at the kitchen table in Woodbury Hts going through pieces w us.*****Amazed that no matter what we ate for dinner, he only used 1 napkin *****Perfectly clean mechanic hands, never a drop of grease & the smell of the hand soap under the kitchen sink*****the annual announcement of "Turkey Lurkey Day."
A very long post...miles make it hard to be home to say what needs to be said to my family.
I am thankful to have had him in my life. He genuinely loved & respected our family. My parents and grandmother, genuinely loved him back...there was no "in-law" it was son, sister, brother. Lol, I can't remember which one your kids, Marie Carr, did a family tree and had me listed as "Aunt " and they were told it was wrong because I'm a cousin and the response was "not in our family."
We are family and forever we will be.
God rest your soul, Uncle Henry. Now you are with our family on the other side. I know you are with us always.
I love you all 💔❤❤💔💔
Father and Godfather
God rest their souls
Henry was so loved by friends and family what an exceptional man! The light of his life was his dear wife Shelly she was so devoted to him. He will be so missed and his beautiful smile will be with me the rest of my life.
I know every niece and nephew will say this...Henry was the best uncle ever! He had the best laugh, the biggest heart, and knew how to give the warmest hugs. We have some of the best memories travelling with you and sharing some awesome meals and wine together. We laughed until our faces hurt or a blood vessel broke in our eye! One of my favorite memories was running into Uncle Henry at concerts at JFK Stadium. My friends would ask, Who is that guy? Um...my Uncle. They always thought that was so cool. Shelly, when you came into Uncle Henry's life, we got to know a whole new Henry. We saw the joy and the love the two of you shared. Thank you for caring for him and bringing such happiness into his life. I know these few words don't do justice to a life well lived. We will always cherish our memories and miss Uncle Henry. I hope that your memories and the special love that you shared will help to get you through these difficult days. We're sorry we can't be there to celebrate Henry's life but we will raise a glass of bubbly in honor of him. With love, Susan and Rob
Shelly, I am deeply sorry for your loss. Henry was one of a kind. Many happy memories. His hugs were awesome and he taught me how to give a proper hug.
I never met Henry's family but I knew him from the Army reserves. RIP friend. That smile & laugh I will always remember. What you saw is definitely what you got !!
The best! What you saw was what you got.
The smile that touched your eyes and the laughter we shared is what we will always remember when we think of you dear friend. Shelly, May you find comfort in all the wonderful memories you hold in your heart.
Kevin and Cathy
Their are so many memories I wouldn’t know where to begin you will be missed by many. Barb & Schmidt
God rest your soul, Uncle Henry. Marie, I love you, Nicole, Henry, Jody & Miss Julia. My heart (our hearts are broken.) This road is a rough one. I'm here for you. I am so sorry. I will always be grateful for my Godfather! He had the best smile and laugh. So many fun times growing up. I was the "extra kid." The love we all shared as a family is forever. Right now, I'm smiling picturing him walking in the house in Camden saying "it's Turkey Lurkey day"...getting caught smoking and 40 years later it still stings that he was disappointed.
He's in peace. Gone from earth, not from life, living each moment in our hearts. Laughing it up with his parents, your Uncle Bill, my parents and grandmom and grandpop.
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