Jean Nathanael Essissima, a beloved husband, father and grandfather, peacefully passed away with his family around him on August 8, 2020 in Houston, Texas. He succumbed to symptoms caused by the COVID-19 virus after spending a month at MD Anderson Hospital; he returned home where he was surrounded by members of his close family.
Nathanael was born on February 10th, 1942 to the late Anne Menga in the village of Metêt, in Cameroon. Raised by his grandparents, he quickly embraced the Seventh-Day Adventist (SDA) religion that his grandfather preached. His passion for learning and education led him to SDA primary and intermediate school. Nathanael received a scholarship from President Ahmadou Ahidjo, which allowed him to continue his education at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., where he received his undergraduate degree in Diplomatic Relations.
While living in Washington, he met his future wife, the late Ruby Lee Boley. The couple affirmed their love through marriage on September 16, 1966 in Washington D.C. After several years, they welcomed their first-born son, Felix. Nathanael and his family returned to Cameroon, where he accepted a position within the government run by President Ahidjo. While living in Cameroon, the family welcomed their second son, Philippe. However, the family decided that their quality of life would be better in the USA. They settled on Houston, Texas to set down their roots and have lived there ever since. Not long after, they welcomed their last child, Francine.
Wanting better for their family, Nathanael and Ruby decided to found their own business in glove sales. Nathanael started from humble beginnings in sales, but eventually established Jenessco Industries, a very successful and respected manufacturing company for sandblasting gloves and other sundries. Sandblasting safety soon became another passion of his, as he learned the ins and outs of the industry.
After the unfortunate death of his first wife in 1996, God gave Nathanael the opportunity to love again, with his second wife Patty Imperial. They sealed their love on December 27, 1998. Together Patty and Nathanael went on to have 22 happy years together, enjoying worldwide travels and creating countless memories together, with Patty at his side in business and in life until the day he died.
Nathanael was an intelligent man who, in addition to speaking French and his native dialect, learned to speak English, Spanish, and Mandarin in his adult years. He enjoyed listening to many kinds of music from Harry Belafonte and Nat King Cole to classical music and Latin music that reminded him of his childhood. Two of his favorite hymns were The Old Rugged Cross and His Eye is on the Sparrow.
Nathanael will always be known for being eloquent, intellectual, kind, giving, forgiving and generous. His stories could always captivate an audience. He would always try to help those in need, no matter near or far. The love he had for his family and friends could never be surpassed. He will be dearly missed by all those who had the privilege of knowing him, but we take comfort in knowing that we will get to see him again, one day soon.
Nathanael is survived by his loving wife, Patty; his children and their spouses Felix and Deanne, Philippe and Felicia, Benjamin and Anna, Alex and Raul, and his daughter Francine Essissima; his grandchildren Evan, Ashley, Nathan, Crystal, Jarred, Garred, Philippe JR, Isaiah, Sienna, Gonzalo, and Leslie; his great-grandchildren Cadence and Cameron Williams; and his siblings Myriame, Fridoline, Paul, Emmanuel and Jeremy. He is preceded in death by his mother, grandparents, and first wife Ruby.
Those wishing to view the livestream for the visitation may do so here: https://www.oneroomstreaming.com/view/authorise.php?k=159874690974537
The video will activate on Sunday August 30th at 3:50 p.m. and run until 8:00 p.m.
To send flowers to Nathanael's family, please visit our floral store.
Attendance is limited to a maximum of 40 people, spread over 30 min intervals. Family and friends planning to attend are kindly requested to RSVP to reserve their time slot