Serving West Michigan Since 1899

Elsie Howard

October 29, 1918 - December 6, 2019
Holland, MI



At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.

Hospice of Holland
270 Hoover Blvd
Holland, MI 49423
(616) 396-2972
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Life Story / Obituary


Elsie Margrethe Howard (nee Hansen) left her earthly home early on December 6, 2019 for an eternal life with Jesus.

Elsie was born in Stubbekobing, Denmark on October 29, 1918 to Oluf and Sarah Hansen. She immigrated to America in December of 1929 with her parents, two brothers and two sisters. Elsie grew up in her teen years in Detroit, attending Cass Technical High School and continuing on in nursing at Highland Park General Hospital becoming a Registered Nurse. She joined the U.S. Army after graduating nursing school and worked on hospital ships and field hospitals throughout Europe during the World War II.

Elsie met her future husband, Loren E. Howard, during World War II at the Officers Club in Algiers and they were married on June 4, 1944 in Caserta, Italy. At the end of WWII, Elsie and Loren returned to reside in Detroit for a short time before moving to Holland, Michigan where they resided until their death. Elsie occasionally worked for various Holland physicians, but her true passion was advising and advocating for quality health care for her many friends and her family. She also served on the Holland Hospital Board. In addition to being a staunch patient advocate, Elsie enjoyed playing tennis, bridge and continued to cook many of her Danish recipes throughout her life.

Elsie’s husband, Loren E. Howard, preceded her in death, passing away on August 21, 2015.

Elsie leaves behind three children, Lynda Howard Hegg (Steve) of Holland, Loren Hansen Howard (Karen) of Monte Vista, Colorado and Nancy Howard Bryson (David) of Harsen’s Island, Michigan, six grandchildren and fifteen great grandchildren.

A memorial service will be planned for the spring of 2020. Donations in honor of Elsie should be given to Hospice of Holland. Arrangements are by Dykstra Funeral Homes – Mulder Chapel.