Holocaust Remembrance Service of Northwest Louisiana

Rose Van Thyn

Obituaries

Rozetta "Rose" Van Thyn died at the age of 88 on Sunday, June 27th, 2010. Louis Van Thyn died at the age of 89 on August 27th, 2008. These are their obituaries which ran in the Shreveport Times on June 29th, 2010 and August 29th, 2008 respectively. You can also read the obituaries on their website here for Rose and here for Louis.

Rose Van Thyn

"SHREVEPORT, LA - Rozetta "Rose" Van Thyn, 88, honored often in Shreveport-Bossier and the area for her commitment to educating the public about the Holocaust, passed away Sunday, June 27, 2010.

She was a survivor of the Auschwitz concentration camp, where she was a prisoner for three years as a young woman. Over the past three decades, she told her story to thousands at area schools, churches and civic groups, and was often a featured speaker at Shreveport-Bossier's annual Holocaust memorial service. As an Attaway Fellow in Civic Culture, she made regular visits to speak to students at Centenary College.

Born and raised in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, she lost her parents, sister and first husband in the camps. She met fellow survivor Louis Van Thyn in Amsterdam after the war and they married in 1946. Louis died on Aug. 27, 2008.

Rose was liberated from Auschwitz by American soldiers and vowed to someday live in the United States. In 1956, the Van Thyns and their two children immigrated to Shreveport, with sponsorship from the Shreveport Jewish Federation and the A.A. Gilbert family.

A homemaker, excellent cook and professional seamstress, she was most proud of her family, of becoming a U.S. citizen in May 1961, and of receiving an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Centenary in 2002. In 2003, she and Louis were recognized by the National Conference of Community and Justice for service to the city. Her most recent honor was the Liberty Bell Award from the Shreveport Bar Association.

Survivors are son Nico (wife Bea) of Fort Worth, Texas; daughter Elsa (husband Jim Wellen) of Voorhees, N.J., grandsons Jason Key (wife Ann) of McKinney, Texas, Adam Wellen (fiancee Tania Welker) of Washington, D.C. and Josh Wellen of Baton Rouge; granddaughters Rachel (husband Russell) Smith of Knoxville, Tenn., and Abby Wellen of Pittsburgh, Pa., and great-grandchildren Josephine Smith and Jacob Key.

A memorial service will be Sunday, July 11, at 2 p.m. at Centenary's Brown Memorial Chapel. She will be honored with a plaque in the Centenary rose garden and a bench at LSU-Shreveport. At her request, her body was donated to LSU Medical Center.

Memorial donations may be made to Van Thyn Endowed Professorship Chair at Centenary College and the Rose and Louis Van Thyn Master of Liberal Arts Scholarship at LSUS"

Louis Van Thyn

"SHREVEPORT, LA - Louis Van Thyn, 89, a Holocaust survivor, passed away Wednesday, August 27, 2008. He had been in declining health for several years.

A native of Amsterdam, The Netherlands, he and his family immigrated to the U.S. in 1956, settling in Shreveport. He became an active member of the community, positive and forward-looking to his final day, able to recall in detail the events of a rich, well-traveled life. He never lost his faith and was devoted to family and friends.

Louis was a member of Agudath Achim Synagogue, a past president of its men's club; the Broadmoor Masonic Lodge, with a 32nd degree in the Scottish Rite, KCCH; and the El Karubah Shrine, where he worked with the stewart unit. In lieu of flowers, he asked that donations be made to the Shriners' Children's Hospital.

He was an avid sports fan, well-known to coaches and athletes in the area. He and his wife, Rose, also a Holocaust survivor were honored often for their commitment to educating students and civic groups about the Holocaust.

Surviving Louis are his wife; son Nico (and wife Bea) of Fort Worth, Texas; daughter Elsa (and husband Jim Wellen) of Voorhees, NJ; grandsons Jason Key (and wife Ann) of McKinney, Texas, Adam Wellen of New York City and Josh Wellen of Baton Rouge, LA; granddaughters Rachel (and husband Russell) Smith of Knoxville, TN, and Abby Wellen of Pittsburgh, PA; and great-granddaughter Josie Smith.

Pallbearers will be his four grandsons, Ron Nierman and Bill Braunig.

A memorial service will be today at 11 a.m. at Rose-Neath Marshall Street Chapel with Rabbi Foster E. Kawaler officiating. Burial will follow at Greenwood Cemetery, Stoner Avenue."