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Nina Brekelmans
Service: Wednesday, June 10 at 11 AM
Location: Dahlgren Chapel, Georgetown University

Nina Brekelmans, 25, passed away tragically in a home fire in Washington, DC NW on the night of June 3, 2015.   She was born on March 6, 1990 in Gahanna, Ohio and had recently graduated from Georgetown University with a Master of Arts in Arabic Studies. Nina spent her early childhood in Harrisonburg, Virginia before moving to Louisville, Kentucky.   The family relocated to Queretaro, Mexico during her last two years of high school, where she immersed herself in the local culture and solidified her fluent Spanish.  Nina completed her undergraduate degree at Dartmouth College, graduating Summa Cum Laude with a major in Arabic Language and Literature.  Her love of the language led her to study abroad in Alexandria, Egypt and, later, Amman, Jordan. At Georgetown?s Center for Contemporary Arab Studies, she further expanded her knowledge and understanding of the region, specializing in women?s issues. Nina was a determined athlete, playing soccer and tennis from an early age.  It was at Dartmouth that her love of distance running began, becoming a member of the varsity running team as a sophomore.  She was a member of the Georgetown Running Club and shared her excitement for the sport as a mentor with the Girls on the Run program.  She volunteered further with Reclaim Childhood, in Amman, to empower refugee and local girls through sports activities.  Nina was recently awarded a Fulbright fellowship, allowing her to advance her passions further: she planned to return to Jordan in the fall to conduct research on female distance runners and continue her Arabic language studies.

She is survived by her parents, Gail and Nico Brekelmans of Shanghai, China, and her brother, Rob, of London, England.

A memorial service will be held at the Dahlgren Chapel, Georgetown University, on Wednesday, June 10th, at 11:00 AM.

Georgetown?s Center for Contemporary Arab Studies will establish a scholarship fund in Nina?s memory to promote the empowerment of women in the Middle East.  In lieu of flowers, please direct donations to the CCAS, attn: Rania??? Kiblawi (, mentioning Nina?s name. To read or leave personal tributes, please send a friend request to her Facebook account.

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DeVol Funeral Home