January 28, 1945 - December 6, 2020
Harold Tillema was an amazing husband, dad, papa, great papa and most importantly, a child of God. He was born on January 28, 1945 to K.D. and Allie Tillema. He was the 5th born of nine children. Their family lived in Cypress, CA and when Harold was three they moved to Corona, then to Chino. It was on the Riverside Drive dairy that he started milking cows at the age of 14 while attending school and the house his parents built still stands today. He attended Chino High School where he met the love of his life, Pamela Thompson. The High School Sweethearts later married in 1963 and began working towards their goal of owning their own dairy. They soon began their family as they welcomed their firstborn daughter, Darlene Marie. Her beautiful brown eyes lit up the room and our Dad’s heart was forever changed! Two years later, Richard was born. Harold and Pam worked very hard managing business and family. in 1967 they moved to Archibald where they lived for nearly 40 years. In 1969 Julie was born. In 1970 they were able to buy the land and cows they had been striving for. In 1973 Jesus took their daughter, Darlene to be home with Him in Heaven. In 1975 Lisa was born. Harold continued in the dairy business his entire life, he loved his cows!
Besides his love for cows, many of Harold’s hobbies included bowling on the Dairyman’s League, we believe from the time it began until it ended many years later. While his kids were growing up he enjoyed playing slow pitch softball, annual trips to Lake Havasu where he taught so many kids how to waterski, summer Thursdays at Lake Elsinore and traveling. After their kids were grown they enjoyed motorhome trips across the US and Canada, trips to the Kentucky Derby and Horse Racing.
He loved his race horses until the day Jesus came to take him home. He named at least one horse after each of his grandkids and every time a baby was born we would anxiously await to see who he would name it after. We can’t wait to name the next one after him! His face would light up when you mentioned any one of his nine grandchildren and his great grandson. He loved them beyond words. He couldn’t wait to see each of them show their 4H heifers, helping them pick out their animals, watch them play sports, getting invited to come play in the pool, or just simple backyard BBQ’s. He always encouraged his kids and grandkids to play sports and enjoy their youth because they had the rest of their life to work.
Our Dad always thanked God for all He gave him and strongly believed in giving back and helping others. He taught us about Jesus, raised us in a Christian home, believed in Christian education and always helped anyone and everyone that God
prompted him too. The joy he experienced in giving was one of the greatest things he taught us. He believed that the right hand should not know what the left hand was doing. He was very good at “tough love” in hopes that all his loved ones would push themselves to be all that God created them to be. He taught us to work hard, with integrity. Be honest, let our yes be yes, no be no and a handshake meant the same as a signed document. Treat others with respect, dignity and honesty. Live generously! Never be tight or stingy, that drove him crazy! Oh and, Pay Down!!! We are forever grateful God chose him to be our Dad. We thank you for your continued prayers as we grieve, but we rejoice that he is with our Lord and Savior! We cling to the words in Psalm 139 and know that God knew how many days our dad would be on this earth even before he was knit together in his mothers womb. We find great comfort and peace knowing Jesus was coming to take our dad home on December 6, 2020 all the days of his life. He is with Jesus, what a glorious day, we can’t wait to join him when Jesus takes each of us home to be with Him!
Harold is survived by his wife Pamela, Son Richard, Daughters Julie (Ron) Haringa, Lisa (Dickie) Vander Meulen. His Grandchildren; Brett Haringa, Austin Tillema, Jenna (Hunter) Berry, Alex Tillema, Marissa (Adrian) Southfield and Justin, Jackson Tillema, Richelle Tillema, Kaylie Vander Meulen, and Faith Vander Meulen. His siblings; Jeanette (Johnny) Rietkerk, Dianne (Jan) Reitsma, Betty Diepersloot, Danny (Becky) Tillema and Dorothy (Tom) Visser. Harold was preceded in death by his daughter Darlene, parents K.D. and Allie Tillema, and his three brothers Art, Jim and Dick.
Harold’s Celebration of Life Service will be held on December 22, 2020 at 12:00 pm
Forest Lawn Covina Hills, 21300 E Via Verde Drive.
In lieu of flowers we ask you please give to Ontario Christian Schools in Memory of Harold Tillema.
Ontario Christian Schools - 931 W Philadelphia Street, Ontario, CA 91762.