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In Memoriam: Jon Kooima

The Dordt College community was saddened by the death of freshman student, Jonathan Ross Kooima, on the afternoon of November 29.

Jon Kooima

Jon Kooima

Kooima was returning to his dorm room following a game of racquetball when he collapsed. He was rushed to the Sioux Center Community Hospital by EMT personnel, but never regained consciousness. An autopsy revealed that the cause of death was an acute asthma attack, cutting off oxygen to the lungs. A prayer service attended by students, faculty and staff was held that evening at Dordt College’s B.J. Haan Auditorium.

Kooima was a native of Ridgecrest, California. He was studying engineering at Dordt, where he was selected to participate in the Kuyper Scholars Program in Christian Scholarship, which provides academically gifted students with scholarly challenges. His dream was to be an architect, designing durable, aesthetically pleasing, affordable housing, says his KSP instructor Dr. Mary Dengler.

Kooima was remembered at a memorial service held on campus on Tuesday, December 5. Students, his college pastor and Sunday School teacher, President Zylstra, his advisor, and his grandmother read Scripture and spoke remembrances of Jon during the service. A number of local members of his extended family also attended. He is remembered as kind and selfless, with a quiet confidence, devoted to his family, and firm in his faith.

A funeral service was held on December 7 in Kooima’s hometown. He is survived by his parents, Harlan and Kim Kooima, and six siblings.