Naděžda Asterová came from a respected family of entrepreneurs. Her grandfather was a constructor who used to build mainly sugar factories and distilleries in Bohemia and Moravia, thus contributing to the Czech land becoming a world power in sugar production. For this reason, the emperor Franz Joseph I. awarded him a title of nobility. Naděžda’s father was also a constructor, who was building Vinohrady, one of the luxurious quarters of Prague. One of his close friends was Karel Kramář, the first prime minister of the independent Czechoslovakia, resulting in Kramář’s Russian wife Naděžda being the godmother, passing her name on little Naděžda.  Naděžda was a unique child. Unfortunately, her father died when she was five years old.

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I join in the condolences of the Military and Hospitaller Order of Saint Lazarus of Jerusalem for the removal from this earthly scene of the Grand Commander Emeritus of the Order and Chairman of the International Grand Bailiwick, Ronald Hendrikus Maria Hendriks, GCLJ, who distinguished himself through a series of important humanitarian involvements and engagements in the health sector and held important positions within the Order, in which he played a key role by saving and reorganizing the Malta Obedience of the Order and in the reunification of the Obediences of Malta and Paris.

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Ronald Hendrikus Maria Hendriks, GCLJ-J, was born on 2 October 1944 in Amsterdam and died on 11 September 2019 at the age of 74.  Ron is survived by his two children and his partner Herma.

Ron had a long and distinguished career in the health care industry.  He retired at the age of 60 as Chief Executive Officer of a Dutch health insurance company.  After his retirement, Ron was asked by the World Bank to advise governments of quite a few lesser developed countries on the implementation of a national health care system.  He ably assisted many of these countries in developing needed health care for their citizens.  Ron served as chairman, member of the supervisory board and consultant of numerous health care related organizations.  He was vice president of the foundation for aid to the young people in Rwanda.  He spent years with the International Marching League with walking marches in 23 countries and served as its Chairman of the Board.

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It is my distinct honour to offer this tribute to our dear friend and Grand Commander Emeritus, Ronald Hendriks, GCLJ-J, who passed away on Wednesday, 11 September 2019 at the age of 74 after a courageous battle against cancer.  Ron was a friend to many members of the Order and traveled extensively throughout the world to visit our jurisdictions.

We will always remember his strong, unwavering commitment to the Order and his great kindness.  His human and Christian qualities and absolute dedication to the service of the Order were known and appreciated by many.  We lost a special friend, a gentle giant of a man who was always willing to lend a helping hand.  He was as large as life in personality, and his management skills were second to none.  We greatly appreciated him, and he was very loyal, reliable and supportive.

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