- 71 years old
- Date of birth: May 29, 1944
- Date of passing: Oct 18, 2015
|Let the memory of Gerlinde be with us forever|
"My sister Gerlinde Hepplewhite who was nicknamed Jessie, passed away October 18, 2015. Although she was our sister, she was much more than that. For most of us she was our second mother, in fact she was my guardian when I was 15 years old and she was 25 for a period of three years after she brought me to the United States when our mother was in the hospital and could not take care of me and we did not have any other relatives in France that could take care of me. After she brought our brother Manfred Lennartz over, and later our mother (Josefine Lennartz) and our younger sister (Christa Lennartz) our family was reunited in the Scranton, PA area. Our other brother (Werner Lennartz renamed Laurent Lennard after his French naturalization). We are of German origin, our parents emigrated to France after the 2nd world war When Jessie was about 5 years old, and the twins Manfred and Werner were 3 months old. I was born in France four years later (11.27.1952) and our younger sister Christa was born 4 years and a few months after me (3.1.1957). So Jessie and her husband Robert Hepplewhite were responsible for all of us coming to the United States and starting our lives over in this country. She became the matriarch of the family in many ways and was always there to help out the family. She tried to bring our remaining sibling over from France also, but he had a family of his own, a son, and later remarried and his wife Martine could not leave her children behind in France. So he remains there to this day. We find it difficult but understand that sometimes it is not possible to get what we want most and must accept it. It is difficult to be away from one another but life brings about changes over which we do not always have control so we must just go on.
Jessie was a very strong person, who worked hard, and raised a good family. Married for 52 years with Robert Hepplewhite, a marriage that would have lasted longer had cancer not claimed her life earlier than expected. Together they raised three children: Charles Hepplewhite (deceased July 4th, 2015), Elizabeth Hepplewhite-Maslyar, and William Hepplewhite."
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