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|Offspring of Joop van Meerveld and Emmy van den Burg (1941)|
|Ron van Meerveld (1959-2003)|| |
|3 other children|
In May 2000 Joop van Meerveld sat for an interview and spoke about his family and life.
The full interview in Dutch can be found here: http://www.olympusgolf.nl/geschreven_portret_joop_van_meerveld.htm
At the time Joop was living with his wife Emmy and daughter Petra in Ouderkerkse.
He was the youngest of 13 children. He was asked if it was a good Catholic family, to which he replied that it wasn't at all. They were Christian - back then they called it Reformed Dutch. He said he had six brothers and six sisters, three were deceased. The oldest and fourth child were deceased. The third, Gerrit was still around. All of his sisters were still alive. His sister, 84, lived in Germany.
His father was a farmer, and also worked on the farm. They lived in a terrace house and although his father had cows and pigs no one knew they kept them, he was so neat with the animals. They had a horse and a wagon and hired boys to work on the farm.
Joop looked back on his childhood very fondly. He believed it was much better than the modern childhood, because respect is gone. His parents took time to give their children an education. If you weren't home for dinner you got none - but by now children are coming home when he's off to work.
He believed he was a very spoiled child - always a bike and a ball while others had no money spent on. He was sent to a Christian school in Duivendrecht. He started around the time of the war - and he told the reporter not to laught at him - but Joop had only completed 4 classes in 12 years. He just didn't feel like it - by the time he was 10 he would much rather play golf or football and skipped school often to much punishment. His two elder brothers worked as caddies since 1936. By the time he was 10 Joop found lugging bags at the golf course much more appealing than school.
He continued working there and found he learnt a lot by watching the golfers. He would carry a golf club and when no one was watching have his own hits. This grew his life long passion for golf.
Joop had many jobs and considered it as twelve trades, master of none: working for his father, working in a factory, bicycle maker, driver and coal merchant.
He married Emmy when she was just seventeen. They had four children: Ron, the head greenskeeper came, then Marcel, Johan and finally his daughter.
When he visited his brother in Canada in 1983, the first thing the brother said was, "Let's play golf," and Joop said he hadn't played for 23 years. His wife said he should give it a go; it would be good for him.
Finally, what did he think of his Christian upbringing: Nothing - if it was true why is there so much rottenness in the world?
Appeared on 2 December 2009. Can be found online at: http://www.ouder-amstel.nl/ouder-amstel/incontact/productie/basis/ic_instyle.nsf/Images/Weekbladen/$File/2009-12-02.pdf
Er zijn geen woorden voor een ziekte
van wie je weet, hij red het niet,
Je streelt zijn wang, je ziet zijn ogen,
je bent bevangen door verdriet.
Toch ben je dankbaar voor zijn einde,
dat na zoveel moedig strijden kwam.
Omdat hij niet alleen zijn leven
maar ook zijn lijden overnam.