Wilhelmina “Wil” Margaretha Maria Wiegman

LEWISTON – Wilhelmina “Wil” Margaretha Maria Wiegman (née Elders), 91, formerly of Rochester, N.H., passed away on March 31, 2019, surrounded by loved ones at D’Youville Pavilion in Lewiston, where she was a resident for the past year. She was born on Feb. 23, 1928, in Enkhuizen, the Netherlands. During World War II, Wilhelmina’s family sheltered a family of Jewish exiles from the German occupying forces throughout the frigid hunger winter of 1944-1945. This action, recognized in 2017 by Yad Vashem, saved the lives of this family and others, creating lifelong bonds still strong today between the families that shared House Elastic, as recounted in the diary published as “Huize Elastiek.”

After the war, Wil completed a degree in social work and worked among the poor of Gelderland in the 1950s. On Nov. 23, 1957, she married Dr. Joseph Wiegman in Bovenkarspel, the Netherlands. In 1959, the young family immigrated to the United States, settling first in Worcester, Mass., where Jos did his medical residency, then in 1961, moving to Somersworth, N.H., where Jos launched a busy family medical practice.

By 1970, Wil and Jos had been blessed with seven children and Wil had become active with numerous volunteer activities in the community, especially with Holy Trinity Parish. While raising her growing family, Wilhelmina supported Jos’ practice in innumerable non-medical ways from delivering the daily coffee break to taking in the weekly laundry.

All her children graduated from St. Thomas Aquinas High School, which meant she had sixteen consecutive years of volunteer efforts with the school between 1972 and 1988. In 1980, the family moved to Rochester, where Wil became an active volunteer at Frisbie Memorial Hospital Auxiliary. Over the next three decades, these efforts included initiating the Medication Assistance Program, and volunteering with the Hospital’s Auxiliary, at the Gift Shop and the annual Lights of Love. At Holy Trinity Parish, Wil served on the Liturgy Committee, as religious education instructor and lector. Wil and Jos were members of Holy Trinity Church, St. Ignatius of Loyola Parish, for over fifty years.

Predeceased by her beloved husband, Jos, in 2013, Wil is survived by four brothers; and two dozen nieces and nephews in Europe; seven children and their spouses: Leo (Julie Evans) Wiegman, Jan (Vicky) Wiegman, Christine (Patrick) Green, Paul (Sarah) Wiegman, Barend (Martha) Wiegman, Herman (Holly) Wiegman, and Marijke (John) Reilly; 17 grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

Special thanks to the loving staff, residents and families of D’Youville Pavilion 3 West in Lewiston and the Androscoggin Home Health Hospice team. We could not be more grateful for your caring hearts and hands.

Wil’s lifelong avocation was serving those in need everywhere she went.

A time of visitation will be held at Bernier Funeral Home on 49 South St, Somersworth, N.H., from 4-6 p.m., Thursday, April 4. A funeral mass will be held at St. Ignatius of Loyola Parish, Holy Trinity Church, 404 High St., Somersworth, N.H., Friday, April 5, at 10 a.m. To leave online condolences, please visit www.bernierfuneralhome.net. Care for the Wiegman family has been entrusted to the Bernier Funeral Home.

In lieu of flowers, please donate to any of the groups she loved or volunteer your time and do your best to fill the shoes she left behind.

Guest Book

filed under: