Boats 03

Hans J. Erwich

May 9, 1929 ~ March 22, 2022 (age 92)


Hans J. Erwich, a loving father, grandfather, and devoted husband, died on March 22, 2022.  Hans was born May 9, 1929, in Rotterdam, Holland. He received a BS in Electrical Engineering from the Netherlands Technical College and completed graduate work at the University of Amsterdam. He was a pilot in the Dutch Air Force and loved to share a story about the weekend he spent in the brig after buzzing the parade grounds while the brass was in attendance. He married Petra Kroon in September 1955, immigrated to Canada in 1959 to work with Canadian Aviation Electronics, and he became a Canadian Citizen. Hans and family immigrated to the US in 1963, settling in Westport, CT.  Hans’ extensive career in electrical engineering and R&D program management brought the family to Glastonbury, CT, Beverly, MA, Wayne, NJ and lastly to Newburyport, MA where Hans and Petra retired in 1993.  

During Hans’ career he worked on defense industry contracts with various branches of the military. He managed the Advanced Wafer Imaging System (AWIS) for the Army, as well as sonar development for the Navy.

In 1980 Hans became a U.S. citizen. Hans required U.S. citizenship to obtain the top-level security clearances he held for the military contracts he worked on. One story Hans liked to tell was that when he was being interviewed for U.S. citizenship, he was asked whether he had any relationships with aliens (non-U.S. persons). Hans answered, “I sleep with one every night.”  Petra had retained her Canadian citizenship and U.S. Green card.

Hans was an avid sailor and enjoyed his retirement in Newburyport, MA. When Petra was looking for a house in Newburyport, Hans had one request, that it would be close to the yacht club. The yacht club ended up abutting their backyard. He would spend many afternoons at the yacht club sitting on the dock in a rocking chair with his cigar. All his retirement activities had a seaport/seacoast focus. He became a member of the Newburyport Harbor Commission and for several years was its chairman. He was also a member of the American Yacht Club. Hans and his best friend, Norm, shared many dinners and cocktails, especially their Friday night dinners at the Dalton Club, where Hans was a member for years. He was also active in and held lay leadership positions in two local churches.

Hans is predeceased by his loving wife, Petra, and is survived by three children, Peter Erwich of Larkspur, CO, Tricia Jenkins and her husband, Brian, of Lynn MA, Willem Erwich and his wife, Kim, of Miami, FL and his adoring grandchildren, Madeline, Georgette and Estelle Erwich of Miami, FL. In addition he is survived by his family in Holland, a sister, Helena Erwich, and nephew and nieces, Bart-Jan Brandt, Heleen Brandt, Marjolein Brandt, and Alexandra Brandt.

A celebration of life will be held on Saturday July 9, 2022 at 10:00 am at the Central Congregational Church, 14 Titcomb Street Newburyport, MA. Burial will be private at a later date. The Twomey, LeBlanc, & Conte Funeral Home 193 High St. Newburyport, MA 01950 is assisting Mr. Erwich’s family with his arrangements.

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Funeral Service
July 9, 2022

10:00 AM
Central Congregational Church (Newburyport)
Guaranteed delivery before the Funeral Service begins

Burial at a later date.

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