The Sun, San Bernardino, CA - January 8, 2005
If he wasnâ€™t exploring the bottom of the sea scuba driving, ERIC WILLEM KOOIMAN was at the top of the world in a hot air balloon. â€œI bought a hot air balloon ride for him and his daughter,â€ said his ex-wife Brenda Kooiman of San Bernardino. â€œ He volunteered to help, and they asked him if he could come back and crew. We would volunteer and trade it for flight time. We spent almost every Sunday for a year and a half doing that.â€
Eric Kooiman, a longtime resident of San Bernardino County, died Dec. 21 of a stroke at his home in Crestline. He was 43.
He was born May 18, 1961 in Santa Monica. He moved with his family to Redlands in 1976. He attended high school in Redlands. He was a member of the schoolâ€™s chamber singers and he played football. â€œHe was pretty bigâ€¦When we got there to register for school, the secretary marched us in the middle of football practice and said to the coach, â€œLook what I found!â€, said his mother Marian Kooiman of Laguna Woods. He graduated from Golden State Trade School. He worked for Computer Systems Professionals and Konica Minolta QMS.
â€œHe started his career working on printers,â€ said Brenda. â€œHe worked for QMS for about two or three years until he made the switch to computers when he went to work for Peak Technologies. While at Peak Technologies, Kooiman trained people wishing for a career change. He trained three or four people at night in his garage in printers and computers,â€ said Brenda. â€œHe did it for nothing. He just wanted to see them make a change in their career. He trained them, then he got them interviews with the company he worked for. They are still with the company this many years later.â€
He worked for Peak Industries for about four years before starting his own business as a computer and systems consultant for three years. He then went to work for Protection Service Industries. Kooimanâ€™s fun-loving spirit could put anyone at east. I also bought him lessons for scuba diving,â€ said Brenda. â€œHe got into the pool this first day, and when he got out he had this huge grin on his face. He ended up becoming an instructor. Scuba diving for him was like he had found his love.â€
Other survivors include his daughter, Amanda Kooiman of San Bernardino, and two sisters, Susan Kooiman of Sacramento and Karen Benson of Kingman, AZ. A memorial service will be at 1 pm Sunday at 2254 Karendale Circle, Riverside. Bobbitt Memorial Chapel in San Bernardino is handling arrangements. Donations may be made to the USC Catalina Hyperbaric Chamber, P. O. Box 5069, Avalon, CA 90704.
NOTE: Submitter is not related in any way to deceased. Obituary is provided for genealogical interest only.