Brief story of each of the children


Walter Kroezen

Walter was born at Kilmarnock, Scotland on 17 November 1907

The only source of information I have on him to date is his Obituary.


The death occurred on Friday, June 27, (1952) at the Yallourn Hospital of Walter Kroezen of New Street, Morwell, aged 44 years, after a short illness.

Born in Scotland, the deceased arrived in Australia in 1926 and settled on the land, farming in various parts of Victoria.

He enlisted during the last war and saw service as a Staff Sergeant in the Victoria Scottish Regiment.

After his discharge he took up duties with the State Electricity Commission and at the time of his death was a foreman in the Briquette factory, at Yallourn.

His activities included membership of the Collins Street, State School Committee, and he was also interested in the Morwell Horticultural Society, of which he was Treasurer.

He had the honor of gaining the Award of Merit from the Burnley School of Horticulture for producing a new dahlia called "Dorothy Lorraine"

He was buried at the Yallourn cemetery and members of the Latrobe Valley Pipe Band piped the cortege to the graveside and played "Flowers of the Forest".

(It has since been discovered that the Dahlia was incorrectly named in the Obituary, the correct name was "Dorothy Lamour".)


Joseph Fergusen Kroezen

Joe was born at Kilmarnock, Scotland on 7 December 1908

Joe worked in a box factory during the 1940's, as he could not enlist in the armed forces due to a dislocated finger on his right hand. After a short time Joseph went to a property in the country near Shelford called Golf Hill to work as a gardener.

After his marriage to Irene they moved to Lilydale and a Captain Payne employed him as a gardener on the estate.

He was employed at AV McKay – Sunshine Harvester Company where he attended to the grounds and garden.

In the 1950's Joe moved to the Footscray Hospital as the head gardener where he achieved many awards for his well laid out and beautiful gardens surrounding the hospital. He worked there until he retired, for approximately 40 years.

Joseph was very involved with the Freemasons Masonic Lodge movement. He held many important positions in the Masonic Lodge over the years as Grand Master of the Footscray Lodge, Secretary to Grand United Oddfellow's of Yarraville.

Joseph was a Life Member of the Yarraville Football Club.

Joseph was a well-liked and hard working member of "The Order of The Eastern Start of Scotland" where his late wife Irene was a member. This Chapter, as it is known, is for the Ladies whose male members of the family were involved in the Freemasons. Joseph held many positions in this Chapter and was the Worthy Patron to his Sister Gertrude Stone. This was the first time in the history of the Chapter that a brother and Sister held the two highest positions in "The Order of the Eastern Star of Scotland Chapter".

Joseph and his late wife Irene were heavily involved in the Congregational Church at Spotswood and were loyal and supportive members. They were also very involved with Lawn Bowls and were a member of the Yarraville Lawn Bowling Club.

Joseph loved gardening and was always giving advice to family and friends on the various aspects of gardening.

Joseph and Irene are survived by their Daughter Nancy, Son's Neil and Denis and many grandchildren.


George Kroezen

George was born at Gailes, Scotland on 19 September 1911.

He attended the Montgomery St School, Irvine.

When George was a young lad in Scotland, he got a job at the Troon Golf Club, located on the coast about 25 miles from Irvine, as a Caddy. He would walk for miles carry golf bags, as long as he earned a few shillings. When the British Open was being played at Troon, George would take pride in telling you about the layout of the course and could remember all 18 holes.

After the family migrated to Australia, George worked on the farms with the family up to the beginning of the 2nd World War. It was during this time he left the farm at Toora and sought work in Melbourne.
He was an apprentice pastry cook for 12 months but had to leave because of the flour dust was effecting his lungs.
George had the reputation of being the fighter of the family. Whenever there was a fight at a dance or party he would be in the thick of it. His first boxing match was at Wangaratta and he toured with the boxing show Jimmy Shannon's Road show, to shows around the district. One night Joe came home and had been in a fight, George asked him what happened, Joe said he was in the middle of taking his coat off, when he got belted up. George belted Joe up for stopping to take off his coat. He told him you never take your coat off if you are going to get into a fight. So from that day on Joe always kept his coat on.

He joined the trams as a Driver/Conductor in the early 40's and worked there until the mid 50's.
George and his family moved to Morwell where he worked for a construction company called John Holland. The company was contracted to build the Housing Commission homes in Morwell where George worked as a laborer.
In the late 50's, while working for John Holland, George was relocated to Melbourne for 12 months to work on the SouthEastern Freeway, which was Melbourne's first freeway to be built along the Yarra River. In the early 60's George returned to Melbourne to work on Melbourne's first Helicopter Pad located on the Yarra River.

After leaving John Holland, George then went to work at the SEC (State Electricity Commission), where he became involved in the Union Movement. He was known to stand at the entrance of the SEC to check the workers to see if they were in the Union, if they weren't they could not work, everyone had to be in the union. George worked very hard for the workers achieving many, many awards and initiated many safety regulations for the workers.
Whenever there was a Power Strike in the Labrobe Valley, George would have to attend many meetings in Melbourne to help resolve the situation. He would stay at his sister Gertrude’s place and travel by train into Melbourne. The reason he traveled by train was that every time the meeting was finished everyone would head for the Union Hotel. This included the president of the ACTU (Australian Council of Trade Unions) Mr. Bob Hawke, who later became Prime Minister of Australia. George knew Bob Hawke on first name terms. They would continue the meeting for many hours into the night, naturally many drinks were consumed. Resulting in George’s niece Barbara often being telephoned to come and pick him up. She would drive in to Melbourne and drive George home. Also a lift was often made available to Bob, who lived in Brighton at the time.

When George passed away the family received a lovely message of condolence from him.

After retiring at 65 he was still very involved with the Union, working from home and attending meetings.

He was know as Scotty and no one ever doubted his judgement.

George died on 20 July 1984 and is buried at Hazlewood Cemetery - Morwell, Victoria.

High Union Honor - as per item in newspaper

George Kroezen may have retired from his job with the SEC (Sate Electricity Commission) but that hasn't stopped him from continuing his work with his union, the FEDFA (Federated Engine Drivers & Firemans Assocation). This is why a large crowd gathered in Morwell's Union House on Friday to grant George a life membership with the union.

George has been associated with the FEDFA for about 20 years, including a stint as the Victorian State President and he is presently Vice-President of the Victorian branch and secretary of the Morwell sub-branch.

In recognition of his services, Union House will now be known as "Kroezen House"


Agnes Gardiner Fergusen Kroezen

Agnes was born at Gailes, Scotland on 11 September 1912.

She attended the Montgomery St School, Irvine. before the family migrated to Australia.

When the Family shifted to a property called Mayfield at Oxley Flats near Milawa (about 12 km from Wangaratta), Agnes briefly attended School at Oxley Flat with her sister Agnes and brother John. Agnes left school at the age of 14 and went to work for Mrs Shaw as a domestic helper for approximately 18 months. Then worked for a Dentist in Wangaratta for a short time before moving with the family to Yarraville, Bena then to Toora near Welshpool.

While living in Toora, Agnes met Peter MacTavish and were married in 1936. They had two sons' Peter and John. Agnes and Peter moved to Elsternwick in the earlier 40's, where she lived after divorcing Peter in 1943. Agnes loved horse racing and attended many track meetings and this is where she meet her second husband George Fitzgerald. They were married in 1948 and had two children Gary and Judi.

Agnes did sewing at home for many years. Then moved to Caulfield and was involved in the Caulfield Pony Club, where her daughter Judi was a member. She travelled to many horse shows including New South Wales and Adelaide Show, Royal Melbourne Show and many shows around Country Victoria..

In 70's the family moved to Bentleigh, where Agnes was involved in the selling of Tupperware. She was the very first lady to sell and demonstrate Tupperware in Victoria. Agnes won many prizes for her sales and was top Victorian Lady for her sale records for years.

Besides selling Tupperware, she was involved in catering at various venues as the Melbourne Football Ground and "Earl's Court" at St Kilda, which was a very large reception centre. She was the Supervisor of the food services at both venues. She sold houseclean wares and Life Insurance door to door in her spare time.

Agnes, her husband George, Gertrude and her husband Richard, spent many holidays together. The four of them went to New Zealand and to Sydney together. The four of them were always out about enjoying each other's company. There was never a week went by, that Agnes and Gertrude did not see each other.

During her life Agnes was plagued with a very bad leg, she had her knee replaced twice and nearly lost her leg in the mid 80's. They were going to amputate her leg but saved it by inserting a steel rod in her leg, which left her with a permanent stiff leg.

Through all her pain she suffered she was always cheerful and worked hard for her family. She was very proud of her grandchildren and kept in touched with her Grandson Peter in England, a son from her eldest son Peter's marriage.

She always put her family first and was very, very proud of their individual achievements. Like the rest of her brothers and sisters, she loved her garden, especially her orchids and was thrilled each year when they would come into flower.

The day she passed away, she was on the phone to her sister Gertrude to see how she went at Bingo that day. She told Gertrude she was looking forward in going to her daughter's for the weekend and to see the new decorated nursery for her new grandchild who was due in a few weeks. But unfortunately she never made it, she died of a heart attack a few minutes after hanging up the phone.

Agnes was a very gutsy lady and a remarkable person and will always be remember for her laugh, when she laughed she would throw her arms high in the air, if seated, kick her legs up high and laugh in a high pitch tone.

Agnes died on 27 October 1989

She was survived by 1 daughter, 2 sons, 5 grandchildren and 3 great grandchildren


Gertrude Kroezen

Gertrude was born at Gailes, Scotland on the 28th of February 1915

Gertrude attended the Montgomery St School, Irvine. before the family migrated to Australia

When the Family shifted to a property called Mayfield at Oxley Flats near Milawa (about 12 km from Wangaratta), Gertrude attended School at Oxley Flat. Gertrude left school at and went to work for a Doctor Godbey at Wangaratta for about 2 years. Then the family moved family to Yarraville, Bena then to Toora near Welshpool. Gertrude went to Fish Greek to work for Mrs McCall as a domestic helper for a for a short time. Then returned to work at the Toora Hotel. It was during this time she meet Stanley Frank Boulter.

Gertrude moved to Melbourne and worked at Ripponlea (this is a large estate) for a Mrs Bernard as a domestic helper. Not long after Frank followed her to Melbourne and they married in 1934.

Gertrude and Frank lived in Elsternwick, where they had a daughter Pamela who unfortunately died of measles and pneumonia at the age of 3 ˝. on the 2nd July, 1939. She had 2 other children Reg and Barbara. Frank joined the army and was sent to Singapore, where he was held a Prisoner of War in the infamous Changi Prison.

During the 2nd World War, Gertrude was involved in running a canteen at the old Esquire picture theatre, near the Elsternwick Railway Station, Elsternwick. With the help of friends Alan and Gertrude Steel they ran a canteen and dances on Wednesday. Saturday and Sunday they supplied meals and also organised the dances for the evenings. This canteen was know as the "Mothers, Sweethearts and Wives Of The Fighting Force Canteen".

After Frank was released as a POW and returned home Gertrude and he divorced after a few years.

Gertrude worked on the trams as a Conductress and was here where she meet and married Richard Stone a widow with 2 children Ron and June, in November 1948.

Sadly June and her husband Reg and their first child David were killed in a motor accident in 1955. After this both Gertrude and Richard left the trams.

Richard was employed my Miles Paint Company and Gertrude worked at the RACV (Royal Automoble Club of Victoria) on the switchboard. She did various jobs until they settled in Springvale. Gertrude worked at Pub Squash (Soft drink Company) as the tea lady and was the Union Representative. She retired from Pub Squash in the late 70's.

Gertrude has 6 Grandchildren and 16 Great Children. She was very involved with the grandchildren when they were young, driving the grand sons to mini bike meetings and attending various sporting events with the grand daughters.

Also she was involved in a Weight Loss Club for many years and was the Leader of this Club for 4 years.

Her other interest was the "Order of the Eastern Star of Scotland" which is the ladies side of the men's Masonic Lodge. She was in this organisation for many years and was eventually the "Worthy Matron" of the chapter. Which is the head position. She was very proud that her Brother Joseph was her partner the "Worthy Patron", it was the first time in the history of the Chapter that a sister and brother held such an important position together at the same time. While in the Chapter she held many fund raising events and raised quite an established amount of money for charity.

Gertrude was really the backbone of the family, everyone would ring her for advice and she spent many weekends up at her sister Mary's farm with her sister Agnes. She kept in touch with her brothers and sisters on a regular basis and was always there for the family when they needed her.

If she wasn't up at the farm she would be in the car with her sister Agnes shopping for the fine cuisine of the Scottish. Food like haggis, Scottish sausage, shortbread etc. They travelled from one end of Melbourne to the other seeking out the real Scottish food.

Gertrude loved playing Bingo and went every Friday to play and it was while she was on holidays in Adelaide that she introduced her brother John to the game, who also got the bug and played quite regularly in Adelaide. At a party Gertrude would have everyone in stitches of laughter with her jokes and her various stories of what happened while working on the Trams.

She too, like her brothers and sisters, was a very keen gardener. She loved to see her garden full of flowers and loved growing a few vegetables in her garden also. You would not be a "REAL KROEZEN" if you did not have a vegetable garden. Actually, all her brothers and sisters were heavily involved in growing vegetables and would be on the phone informing each other what they had planted and bragging that they grew the best tomatoes, beans etc.

Gertrude died peacefully at home on 15 September 2007. Tribute


Mary Phillips Kroezen

Mary was born on the 14th December 1914 in Gailes just outside Irvine - Scotland.

In 1926 when Mary was 12, her Mother, 2 sisters Agnes, Trudy and 3 brothers Walter, George and John came to Australia. Her father had been in Australia for 11 months to find work and a new home for the family.

The family settled down in Spotwood, where Mary attended the Spotwood State School. After only 12 months at Spotwood the family moved to Oxley Flats Via Wangaratta, where her father was a share farmer. After 3 years the family moved again to Bena share farming.

In her earlier teens Mary found a job at the Royal Women's Hospital in Melbourne as a Wards Maid. She worked there for several years during the 2nd World War.

Some time in 1938/39 she married a Harry Bell, they were divorced around about 1946.

On leaving the hospital she worked for a short time on the trams as a Conductress.

In the early 50's she married Keith Locock who was a horse trainer and they lived for some time at Mordialloc. They had a daughter Patricia. She had several miscarriages and when she was having Patricia she was kept in at the Royal Womens hospital for 6 months prior to the birth, so she would not loose the baby.

In the 60's they moved to Morwell and Keith worked at the SEC until his death.

Mary moved out to the Leslie Farm and lived there for some time in the spare house. After a short time she aquired a job at the RACV in St Kilda and it was while she was there that she got the position of housekeeper to Mr. Norman Carlie. Mary worked for Mr. Carlie for about 5 years.

Then she returned to Morwell and married Adam in 1968. Not long after marrying Adam, Adam became very sick and was hospitalised at the Austin Hospital for nearly 12 months. During his absence Mary and Bert (the handyman) worked the farm together for nearly 12 months. She did the milking, cleaned the tuffs (weeds) from the paddocks and took on many of the tasks that Adam would've done.

Mary was a person who never turned her back on anyone in need. She worked hard long hours on the farm and her door was always opened to anyone who wished to enter. There was always food on the table for who ever turned up at mealtime and a fire to keep you warm.

She worked very hard in the community and was very interest in the community's affairs. She loved her Bingo, cards and the pokies On the 4th June 1995 she did the unbelievable, she did a Tandem Parachute Jump, with her Great Nephew David Boulter. But that was Mary, she would have a go at anything, she was a real goer.

In 1997 Mary suffered a very bad stroke and was hospitalized at Traralgon, she was so frail she could not talk, read or walk. We didn't think she would recover. But being a real Kroezen she fought back and learnt how to speak, read and walk. She was then placed into the nursing home, where she lived for the remainder of her life.

But it didn't end here, while at the home, she would encourage other patients to get involved in activities and help bring some laughter back into there lives. She would go on bus rides and of course a trip to her favorite past time the POKIES was always a highlight for her.

But the one thing that we will remember about Mary is she worked like a man but went out as a lady.

Mary died on the 18th December 2001 at St Hilliers Nursing Home Morwell.


John Kroezen

John was born at Mosside, Dundonald, Scotland on 11 August 1921. He was five years of age when the family migrated to Australia.

John enlisted during the war and served with the Artillery in New Guinea in an Anti Aircraft Battery. While home on leave he met and married to Norma Eileen Chadwick on August 5 1944. John overstayed his leave and ended up in the guard house. They had one child John Robert born in 1946.

After the war John worked as a house painter. At first for himself and then for a Glen Bush and then with Miles Paint Service. He eventually became the Victorian Country Area manager for Miles. In 1965 he was sent to South Australia to take over management of the Company that Miles Paint Service had aquired as a branch and was not doing well. In 1969 after getting the South Australian branch firmly established and in a new headquarters to cope with the expansion, he was then sent to Queensland to take over the Queensland Branch and return that to profitability.

He retired to South Australia in 1974 where he and Norma owned and ran a Health Food shop until he retired completely in 1985.

His greatest delight in his later years were his Grandchildren. He always looked forward to visiting them in Port Lincoln or when they visited him in Adelaide.

John died on 31 October 1998 at St Andrews Hospital Adelaide.


Elizabeth Valmae Kroezen

Betty left school at 15 and worked in the canteen of the Newport workshop for approximately 2 years.
From there she worked at the Alfred Hospital in Melbourne as a wards maid until her marriage to Ken Spence in 1951.
After her marriage she moved to different areas and eventually set up house in Morwell, Gippsland in the late 60's
Betty was always plagued with a very bad health and weight problem all her life due to a glan problem. She spent 6 months at the Monash Hospital in Clayton on a special program to reduce her weight.
She accomplished this by walking around every floor up and down stairs and lost a considerable amount of weight, so much she was that thrilled when she bought a dress off the rack for the first time in years.
One of Betty's interest was playing darts; she was very good at the game and toured all over Gippsland playing in various tournaments for the Morwell Bowling Club, Morwell East Football Club and various Social Clubs in Morwell and the Labtrobe Valley districts. She won many trophies and awards for her skill at the game. It was said that many opponents and teams used to shudder when they knew she was there playing as they knew they had a hard task ahead of them to try and win.
Every football season Betty would be down at the Morwell East Football Club working in the kitchen making soup and lending a hand where it was needed. Her other interest was her unflinching charity work for Uncle Bob's and other charity organisations. She raised thousands of dollars and through her hard work 2 Mini Cribs were denoted to the Traralgon and Children's hospital. She was also involved with the Salvation Army Branch in Morwell.
Every Good Friday she would be on duty to help count the endless donations for the Good Friday Appeal. It didn't matter if it was raining or freezing, Betty would be there doing her bit for charity.
Betty was farewelled at a Salvation Army Chapel in Morwell with over 300 people attending the service, she was a well respected lady in the community because her heart was bigger than herself and could never say no when someone needed a hand.
Betty had a beautiful Country and Western singing voice, she loved listen to Dolly Parton and it was while listen to a recording of Dolly Parton she quietly slipped away on 14 December 1989. She is survived by 6 children and 18 grandchildren. Betty is buried at the Yallourn Lawn Cemetery, Victoria