My father, Johan Albert (Joopie) Rusche was a Netherlands National, born in 1907 in Solo (Surakarta), in the former Dutch colony for 300 years called The Dutch East Indies, it is now known as Indonesia.
He was the eleventh child of Albert and Diena Rusche.
His siblings were:
- Alberta Wilhelmina (Bertha) Samuels de Wilde
- Roelof Willem Albert (Willem) Rusche
- Johannes Phillippus Cornelis (Jootje) Rusche
- Diena Anna Magdalena Theodora (Annie)
- Albert Willem Roelof Rusche
- Julius Cornelis Alexander Augustus (Alex) Rusche
- Theodorus Willem Albert (Theo) Rusche
- Alberdina (Dina) Doesburg
- Cornelis Marinus Alwin Albert (Alwin) Rusche
- Adolph Heinrich Christiaan (Ade) Rusche
1907 – 1927
Growing up in the West and Central parts of the island of Java, the stronghold of the Dutch occupancy. Working at the Rusche Family businesses.
1907 – 1927
1927 – 1940
In the West and Central parts of the island of Java, the stronghold of the Dutch occupancy.
World War II
December 8, 1941
In a public proclamation, the Netherlands declares war on Japan.
March 9, 1942
The Netherlands, Dutch East Indies surrenders to Japan. Johan goes in hiding for 5 months.
July 29, 1942
Captured by the Japanese.
1942 – 1945
Johan was captured as a Prisoner of War by the Empire of Japan (July 29, 1942) and sent to internment camps throughout World War II. He was on the famous Junyo Maru that was torpedoed with 6500 POWs, slaves and crew. 5620 perished in the waters off southwest Sumatra – making this the largest maritime disaster of World War II!
723 survived and only 96 survived after the war!
Released as POW. Moved to Bandung, Central Java. Also was a place where the Dutch colonialism had Tea plantations and it was another Dutch stronghold. Soon before WWII was over, Indonesia reclaimed their independence from The Netherlands. Violence increased toward the former Dutch and also the former Japanese occupiers that had remained.
The Netherlands recognizes the Indonesian state.
The drive for Indonesian independence spurred violence toward the former Dutch occupiers and the family flees on refugee boat for refuge to The Netherlands.
1950 – 1961
The family spent the next 10 years (1950-61) living in Den Haag (The Hague), South Holland.
Johan works at a Tennis club.
Johan works at ZHB South Holland Brewery.
Arthur Denis Rusche is born in Den Haag.
Peggy Minke Rusche is born in Den Haag.
Art starts kindergarten in Den Haag.
Johan applied for immigration to the USA. Through the World Council of Churches, The First Baptist Church of Olympia Washington signed up to sponsor our family in the United States.
Feb 20, 1961
On February 20, 1961 the family arrived in New York. Johan (54), Conny (47), Joyce (14), Arthur (5) and Peggy (2). There was a national airline strike on at the time and I remember it taking a long time to get to Seattle. We arrived at night in a downpour as we were picked up by Dr Henry Rahn, the pastor of The First Baptist Church in Olympia Washington and Mrs. Bingham the church’s secretary. The Church set us up with a rental duplex on Olympia’s Westside near the old St Peters hospital. They also furnished us with a Ford station wagon with wood panels. We stayed in that house until we gained citizenship in 1966.
- Joyce attends Jefferson Jr High, Olympia High and Western Washington University.
- Art attends Garfield Elementary, Jefferson Jr High, Olympia High and Washington State University.
- Peggy attends Garfield Elementary, Jefferson Jr High, Capital High and Washington State University.
Johan starts “Johan’s Radio Repair” inside Modern TV on 700 4th Ave E. in Olympia. Johan was one of the first technicians to learn transistor technology and was the place to go for transistor radio repair in Olympia.
- Family also works at the church, washing dishes and serving food at church functions
Petitioned and became citizens of the United States, Johan, Conny and Joyce were naturalized and Art and Peggy were “Derivatives of Naturalization”. We were then able to sponsor Conny’s mother, my grandmother Anna Minke Herrebrugh to America!
Conny starts work as a second-shift Keypunch operator at the Washington State Department of Licensing. She would wait for the kids to come home from school, start dinner, then Johan would come home and bring her to work. At midnight he would pick her up at the Capital Campus.
April 10, 1980
January 23, 1984
May 5th, 1995