Inwood, IA: Kendra Ann Van Essen, 10, of Inwood, Iowa, died Saturday, November 27, 2021, at Sanford Canton-Inwood Hospital in Canton, South Dakota. Funeral service will be held Friday, December 3, at 1:00 PM at Inwood First Reformed Church with Rev. Rob Horstman officiating. Burial will follow at Richland Cemetery of Inwood. Visitation, with the family present, will be held Thursday, December 2, from 5:30-7:30 PM at Inwood First Reformed Church. Porter Funeral Home of Inwood is assisting the family with arrangements. Memorials may be given to the Kendra Van Essen Benefit Fund or the Inwood EMS.
Kendra Ann Van Essen, daughter of Heath and Amber (Kooistra) Van Essen, was born January 31, 2011 in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. On the day Kendra was born, we knew that God had a very special and perfect plan for our beautiful little girl. Kendra spent her first 130 days in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) until joining her parents and sister, Chloe, at their home in Inwood, Iowa on June 11, 2011. Growing up in Inwood, Kendra virtually attended West Lyon Elementary School. Kendra enjoyed playing on her iPad and watching Praise Baby videos and Dora the Explorer. She also like taking van rides around town.
Kendra was such a blessing to all that knew her. Her blowing of kisses and a tight hug with a pat-pat-pat on the back will be missed. She had a huge personality and although she could be a little sassy at times her sweetness always shined through. All that met her quickly adored her. Kendra was a daddy’s girl from the start and together they enjoyed watching football. Her sister, Chloe, was her best friend and the girls shared a special bond. Kendra also grew a close bond with her home health and hospital nurses who were a special part of her life, always providing great care. Kendra didn’t have home health the last 8 months, and she was blessed with the great care only her mother could provide.
She is survived by her parents, Heath and Amber Van Essen of Inwood; sister Chloe Van Essen; paternal grandparents, Arvin and Carol Van Essen of Rock Valley, Iowa; maternal grandparents, Mike and Ranae Kooistra of Doon, Iowa; and many aunts, uncles, and cousins.