Kaija Jung Andersen, 7, died on the morning of Wednesday, Aug. 7, 2019 in Montclair, due to a sudden acute asthma attack.
Born in New York City on June 7, 2012, Kaija lived a joyful life and inspired many through her kindness, empathy, curiosity, creativity, determination, fierce courage, wit, adventurousness and silly sense of fun.
Kaija was a rising second grader and Girl Scout troop member in the Girl Scouts Heart of New Jersey. She earned an orange belt at the Montclair Shukokai Karate dojo and was a volunteer for Toni’s Kitchen.
A lifelong member of St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, Kaija attended Nishuane Elementary School and YMCA before/aftercare, Park Street Academy, and Executive Baby daycare/pre-K. Kaija also attended and immensely enjoyed classes and camps at: Camp Newark Museum, Montclair Art Museum, YMCA of Montclair/Geyer Center, Jazz House Kids, Montclair Learning Center, Essex Youth Theater, Steve and Kate’s – Montclair, Safe Splash Swim School, Montclair United soccer, Ellis Dance School, Gymnastika, Music Together, and TADA! Youth Theater.
She loved animals, nature, music, drama, creating art, photography, dancing, reading, writing, coming up with projects and math. She loved being helpful and making friends. She liked comic books, movies, soccer, and coding. She loved going to live performances. She was a fan of Hugh Jackman and attended his concert at Madison Square Garden and The Greatest Showman, Wild Kratts, The Descendants movies, and The Brand New Heavies.
Kaija is survived by her parents, Jason Andrew and Susan Shin Andersen, grandparents Leonard and Sharon Andersen and Philip Haekyun and Jungsook Shin, uncle John Shin, aunt Kristen Bruckner (Eric), first cousins Cameron McKee and Bridget Bruckner, godmother Jennifer Shin, family all around the world, and many friends both young and older.
Funeral services were held at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Montclair on Aug. 10, where she is interred. A scholarship fund will be established in memory of Kaija Jung Andersen and donations in her memory to Toni’s Kitchen at tk.slechurch.org are appreciated for the Healthy Backpacks program.