Rosella Victoria Venier Kok, 87, of New York, NY passed away on Wednesday, November 11, 2021 at Weill Cornell Medical Center surrounded by her loving family.
Rosella was born and raised in Princeton, NJ. She attended St. Paul’s Grammar School, Princeton High School, and graduated from Trenton’s Cathedral High School for Girls. Before she entered college, she worked for a brief period of time at the Federal Reserve Bank and New York University (NYU). At NYU, she earned a Bachelor of Science in English. After marrying the love of her life, Hans Kok, Rosella continued with her education while caring for her two young children. She attended Teachers College, Columbia University where she earned a Master of Arts and a Master of Education.
Rosella had a very rewarding career as a school psychologist at the NYC Board of Education where she worked for 20 years. Her initial appointment was working as an Educational Evaluator on the Committee for the Handicapped. She was later assigned to schools in the South Bronx as a member of their School Based Support Team (SBST). After several years she transferred to District 4 in Upper Manhattan as the SBST team’s School Psychologist. From 1988-1995, she also served as the Manhattan Chapter Representative for “The School Psychologist,” a publication of the New York Association of School Psychologists where she published several articles.
Before she retired, she was granted a year sabbatical to visit and study early childhood programs in England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland, Alaska and Israel. When she returned from her cherished studies and adventures, she shared these experiences with other educators in various workshops. At the conclusion of her career she reminisced on how fortunate she was to have followed a path in life guided by her faith and passion for childhood education. She was devoted to helping children develop their self-confidence to improve their learning skills by providing a caring and compassionate educational experience especially to those who needed special attention. She loved her students and made a real difference in so many lives in her career and her personal life. She said, “it was a privilege and time well spent, always to be remembered with feelings of deeply felt gratitude.”
Rosella was a tennis enthusiast her entire life. She was on her high school’s varsity tennis team and continued to play throughout most of her life. When she retired, she traveled the tennis circuit and attended the Australian Open, the French Open, Wimbledon as well as attending the US Open many times. She also enjoyed sailing, camping and traveling with her family and had a passion for art and writing. Family was very important to Rosella. She loved spending time with her family, taking part in holiday traditions and celebrating special occasions. She had a gift for writing the most beautiful loving, caring and supportive letters. It brought her great joy to create, write and decorate beautiful cards for her friends and family. She also enjoyed meeting new friends and would strike up a conversation with everyone she met with many turning into lifelong friendships. She has a unique sense of humor and wit and loved to make others smile and laugh. She also had a special love for animals throughout her life and adored her sweet dog, Gabby, who brought her so much joy and love.
Rosella was a very special person to so many. We will miss her so very, very much and feel blessed to have had her in our lives. She will live on in the hearts of all of those to whom she meant so much.
She is predeceased by her parents Mario Venier and Jennie Tunning and her brother John Venier.
Rosella is survived by her husband Hans Kok, her daughter Karen Kok, her son and daughter-in-law George and Lisa Kok, her beloved grandchildren Nicholas and Pippa Kok and Tory Schatz who fondly called her Nana Ro, and her dog Gabby.
A memorial visitation will be held from 3 pm to 5 pm on Sunday, November 14, 2021, at Mather-Hodge Funeral Home, 40 Vandeventer Avenue, Princeton, NJ. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10 am on Monday, November 15, 2021, at St Paul’s Roman Catholic Church, 216 Nassau Street, Princeton, NJ.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Weill Cornell Medical Center. https://s010.med.cornell.edu/wcmc/make-a-donation.html