Promoted to Glory

Promoted to Glory

Brigadier Gwen Carruthers was promoted to Glory on July 21 from a hospital in Burnaby, British Columbia.

Born May 16, 1916 in New Westminster, B.C., Canada, Gwen was the daughter of the late Colonel and Mrs. Walter-John Carruthers.

She entered training in Toronto from the Wrangell, Alaska corps—at this time Alaska was part of the Canada and Bermuda Territory—and was commissioned in 1940 with the Holdfast Session.

In 1944, while serving as corps officer in Juneau, Captain Carruthers was transferred to the USA Western Territory, when the Alaska Division became part of that territory. She served in several corps in Calif., and from 1947-1956 she held appointments at Portland White Shield Home, Los Angeles Booth Hospital, Oakland Booth Hospital, Boise (Idaho) Booth Hospital and Spokane (Wash.) Booth Memorial. In 1956 she was appointed superintendent of the San Diego Door of Hope, where she served until 1973. She then returned to Los Angeles Booth Hospital as administrator, remaining until her retirement in 1978.

While stationed at the Door of Hope in San Diego, she was honored as San Diego Woman of the Year. Gwen became a mentor to many young women officers. She was one of the first officers to earn a degree in social work while working full time, setting a pattern many would follow.

After retirement Gwen returned to British Columbia to be close to family. She was a faithful soldier of the South-mount Citadel Corps in Vancouver, B.C.

She is survived by her brother, Walter Carruthers and her sister, Joy Belyea, along with 24 nephews and nieces and three great-nephews and nieces.

A memorial service was held at the Southmount Citadel with Commission-er Christine MacMillan officiating.

Messages may be sent in care of Mr. Walter Carruthers, 11721 Woodenville Duval Road, Woodenville, WA 98072.

Adjudant Hillegonda Sprokkereef was promoted to Glory June 8, 2004 from Almere, the Netherlands. Born in Avereest, the Netherlands on October 27, 1909, her life was a testimony to God’s grace.

Hillegonda Beverwijk was commissioned with the Emanuel Session on September 11, 1934; within months of her commissioning she married Captain Egbert Sprokkereef and they soon received transfer orders to the Dutch West Indies (Indonesia).

By December 1941, Indonesia had been brought into the war and her husband was told to join the Dutch military. Three months later, the Japanese invaded Indonesia and quickly took control of the islands. Within weeks, The Salvation Army was outlawed, property was confiscated, and Hillegonda, now with four children under eight years of age, joined thousands of Europeans and many Army officers and their families in a concentration camp. Eventually, they would be shuffled to seven other prisoner of war camps, where disease, brutality and depression were rampant.

Upon release on August 18, 1945, they returned to Holland. It wasn’t until 1948 that they learned Egbert had died in 1943 while working on the Burma Road as a prisoner of war.

“My grandmother’s testimony never wavered,” said Capt. Ted Horwood, her grandson. “Throughout her life she remained steadfast in her faith and assured of God’s grace upon her. She was more than a conqueror, she was a hero.”

Friends in the Western Territory will remember Adjudant Sprokkereef by the name “Oma,” which means “grandmother” in Dutch.

She is survived by three children: Dinie Mackey, Margot Horwood, and Bert Sprokkereef (her son Bram died in 2002); grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Messages of condolence may be sent to: Major Albert Sprokkereef, Glenn Millerweg 157, 1311 KC Almere, the Netherlands or Captain Ted Horwood, 1605 Bardale Avenue, San Pedro, CA 90731.

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