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Thank you for your support during this difficult time. Please enhance this tribute to Henri by adding your memories and photos.

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Memories & Candles

“Henri hired me from Pittsburgh to be his assistant...brought me to Boston to associate with all of the Genzyme Compatriots...they were wonderful...Read More »
1 of 80 | Posted by: Beth Bodner (Ponte) Cumiskey - ME

“Belinda and family,My heart goes out to you. Henri wasn't supposed to die in my mind but to carry on and create more and more solutions for our...Read More »
2 of 80 | Posted by: Helen Maslocka - Newburyport, MA

“I did not know Mr. Termeer personally, but I came to know him through Deborah Daw Heffernan's book "An Arrow Through the Heart". I admired him so...Read More »
3 of 80 | Posted by: Carol Terry - Nashville, TN

“Belinda - Christine and I send our heartfelt sympathy - you and your family are in our prayers ”
4 of 80 | Posted by: Colette Desmond Fearnley - MA

“Dearest BelindaSo very sorry for your loss, Sean & I are sending our love & sympathy in this tough and shocking time for you. Your lovely daughter is...Read More »
5 of 80 | Posted by: Christine Desmond Cleary - Trim

“Dear Belinda, I was so sorry to hear about your loss. I just wanted you to know I thinking of you and your family during this difficult time. Psalm...Read More »
6 of 80 | Posted by: Ida Tenori (Gallegos) - Friend

“Commercial Wharf will miss Henri. His service on the Board lead to one of the most aggressive and successful improvement and maintenance projects the...Read More »
7 of 80 | Posted by: Tom Tillotson - Boston, MA

“I am honored and blessed to have known Henri. Tim Conner, Darden '73 ”
8 of 80 | Posted by: Tim Conner - Houston, TX

“Dear Belinda,My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family in this time of loss. It was so nice to have all the memories of Henri at the wake...Read More »
9 of 80 | Posted by: Kathy Hehir - Grafton, MA

“Belinda and Family, I worked with Henri at Baxter when we both lived in Los Angeles. That was over 35 years ago, when we were young. It was obvious...Read More »
10 of 80 | Posted by: Mike Harris - St. Charles, MO

“My late son Steve Morgan was married to a Genzyme employee. When Steve died unexpectedly of a heart attack at age 34 leaving his wife Michelle, three...Read More »
11 of 80 | Posted by: Susan Taylor - Natick, MA

“I hardly knew YOU Henri, but the YOU I knew was a kind, gentle, and caring man. Your passing leaves the world of medical research a tall order to...Read More »
12 of 80 | Posted by: Kenneth Buechs - Biddeford, ME

“There are simply no words that can adequately convey our deep and abiding sorrow for your loss, and frankly for all those who knew Henri. His...Read More »
13 of 80 | Posted by: Francene and Todd Kanter - MA

“Dear Belinda,I was fortunate to have worked almost 10 years for Genzyme under the leadership of Henri, first in Europe and then in Cambridge. I have...Read More »
14 of 80 | Posted by: heidi de wit - atlanta, GA

“Dear Belinda and familyOur life Changed since we met Henry, he saved the life of our son.He always will be in our hearts.Good bless you ”
15 of 80 | Posted by: Herbert and Tania Levy

“To Henri and his family,Henri and Genzyme were critical in the transformation of biologics for rare diseases from lab experiments into real therapies...Read More »
16 of 80 | Posted by: Emil Kakkis - Novato, CA

“Those of us who have spent much of our careers in the biotech field consider Henri as one of our leaders, in fact the leader in the Boston area.Henri...Read More »
17 of 80 | Posted by: Don Hudson - Marion, MA - Friend

“Belinda - So sorry, my dear friend. Life is fragile and beyond our understanding however trust that Henri will continue to be a positive force on...Read More »
18 of 80 | Posted by: Nancy and Paul Capalucci Antonio - MA

“Dear Belinda and family,Myself and my family are deeply saddened by the lose of Henri. He was an amazing man and generous spirit. You may not know...Read More »
19 of 80 | Posted by: Victoria Fitz-Gerald - Swampscott, MA

“Ms. BelindaI am an MIT employee and work for Charles Cooney, and always heard great words about Mr. Termeer.It is a great loss.May God bless you and...Read More »
20 of 80 | Posted by: Rosangela dos Santos - Cambridge, MA

“Dear Termeer Family,I had the pleasure of meeting Henri when we represented opposite sides of a biotech commercialization deal. He brought vision,...Read More »
21 of 80 | Posted by: John Fletcher - Boston, MA

“Belinda and family, my most sincere condolences for your loss. My heart and prayers are with you at this time. I have the fondest of memories of...Read More »
22 of 80 | Posted by: Silvia Santos (Hernandez) - MA

“Dear Henri,It is so hard to say good bye to you. I thought I would write this letter that I would have loved you to read if I had the magic to...Read More »
23 of 80 | Posted by: Elisabet de los Pinos - Brookline, MA

“Dear Belinda and Adriana,We are heartbroken by your loss and will forever be indebted to Henri for all he has given to us. He welcomed us...Read More »
24 of 80 | Posted by: Alice & Rob Pomponio - Medway, MA

“RIP Mr Termeer ”
25 of 80 | Posted by: Paul Smets - Coworker

“Dear Belinda,We at Artax team have no words to express how deeply sorry we were to hear about your loss. We were honored to have such a thoughtful...Read More »
26 of 80 | Posted by: Damia Tormo - Boston, MA

“Dear Belinda: So many of us in the biotech community cut our teeth at Genzyme (I was in Kendall Square 1993-2006). It is an honor to claim Genzyme...Read More »
27 of 80 | Posted by: Sue Stewart - Cambridge, MA

“Belinda and family, I am so sad and sorry for your loss. I am a Gaucher patient who benefited from Henri's vision, compassion and preservance. I was...Read More »
28 of 80 | Posted by: Linda Rubenstein - Carlilse, MA

“Belinda and family,My deepest condolences and sympathy. I was shocked and saddened when I received the news from a contact at Shire. Words cannot...Read More »
29 of 80 | Posted by: Tim Houseal - Vernon Hills, IL

“I am very saddened by the news of Henri's passing. I worked at Genzyme from 2000-2012. Henri meant so much to Genzyme and its employees, to the...Read More »
30 of 80 | Posted by: Marco Passini - Northborough, MA

“So saddened at the loss of this great leader. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Belinda and the family. To our Genzyme family, we are sorry that...Read More »
31 of 80 | Posted by: Sally & David Curley - Powell, OH

“As a Genzyme employee, I will always remember seeing his friendly face in the halls at Allston Landing. He built a wonderful company. He will be...Read More »
32 of 80 | Posted by: Maria James - Milford, MA

“Dear Belinda and Termeer Family, we are so sorry to hear of your loss. We joined Genzyme Germany in 1998 and 2001, when we still were a small group...Read More »
33 of 80 | Posted by: Elke Paul and Mirjam Bein Germany

“I am deeply saddened having learned of Henri's passing. The world has lost a great. I spoke with Henri in recent weeks about a special project of...Read More »
34 of 80 | Posted by: SUSAN STEPHENSON - RICHMOND, VA

“Henri influenced me to move to Boston from Detroit MI and establish my First biotech public company next to him at Kendall square. ”
35 of 80 | Posted by: A friend

“I am deeply saddened to hear the passing of a true catalyzing person and visionary. I am a Type 1 Gaucher patient who has been fortunate to benefit...Read More »
36 of 80 | Posted by: Mona Kornberg - Rego Park, NY

“Dear Belinda and Adriana,Words cannot express how deeply sorry we all are with the loss of Henri. To say he was a great man is an understatement. ...Read More »
37 of 80 | Posted by: Jessica Kreyer - Marblehead, MA

“Belinda. Henri's body is no longer with us, but his compassion, kindness and spirit will never be gone. My heart is full of gratitude, he changed my...Read More »
38 of 80 | Posted by: Jhon J. Cuervo - FL

“I did not know Henri well but am a long time Genzyme employee who had the privilege of working under his leadership. He built a great company and...Read More »
39 of 80 | Posted by: Alice Smith - Douglas, MA

“Dear Belinda,I am so sorry to hear of your loss. I will always treasure Henri's kind words and wisdom,as well as his good humor and enthusiasm. It...Read More »
40 of 80 | Posted by: Jonathan McPhee - Sudbury, MA

“Dear Belinda &amp; Termeer Family, <br /><br />I am so saddened to hear this news. It was my privilege to have worked so closely...Read More »
41 of 80 | Posted by: Julia Interrante - Boston, MA

“Dear Belinda,<br />I am so sorry for you loss. You and your family will be in my prayers. Henry was an amazing human being, a man that lived...Read More »
42 of 80 | Posted by: Catherine Deary Lehmann - MA

“Dear Belinda,Henri touched so many lives - patients, colleagues, and others he may not have even known. He was a tremendous leader with a heart that...Read More »
43 of 80 | Posted by: Andrew Leger - Woburn, MA

“I wish to extend my sincere condolences to the family and friends. ”
44 of 80 | Posted by: C. Nabor - DC

“Words cannot express the depth of our sorrow at losing Henri who felt like a dear, dear friend even if we were only lucky enough to see him and you...Read More »
45 of 80 | Posted by: Diane and Richard Schmalensee - MA

“Dear Belinda, My heart goes out to you and your family. I feel very privileged to have worked with Henri and I am sad for this loss. He was an...Read More »
46 of 80 | Posted by: Nancy Stuart - Lexington, MA

“Dear Belinda, My deepest condolences to you and the Termeer family. I joined Genzyme in 1996, when we still were a small group of people in Germnay....Read More »
47 of 80 | Posted by: Andreas Heil Bad Homburg, Germany

“Henri was a marvelous and inspirational leader. He created an extraordinary environment at Genzyme for scientists and business people to work...Read More »
48 of 80 | Posted by: Bruce Wentworth - Northborough, MA

“Dear Belinda and Adriana, We are lucky to have had Henri as a friend and for me a mentor. His positive approach to life, his optimism, his...Read More »
49 of 80 | Posted by: Richard and Marianne Moscicki - MA

“Belinda and family, I am so sad and sorry for your loss. I am a Gaucher patient who benefited from Henri's vision, compassion and preservance. I was...Read More »
50 of 80 | Posted by: Linda Rubenstein - Carlisle, MA

“To Henri's Family and Friends Please accept my deepest deepest sympathies.I was very fortunate to work with Henri, while I was Mayor of Cambridge. ...Read More »
51 of 80 | Posted by: Michael Sullivan - Cambridge, MA

“Dear Belinda,We are so saddened to hear of Henri's passing. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and Adriana. Our deepest sympathies, Jim & Verene...Read More »
52 of 80 | Posted by: Jim and Verene Zabrecky - Newton, MA

“Dear Belinda, I posted a few minutes ago to you. Henri was a great friend and mentor and I know how very much he loved you. My husband Richard and...Read More »
53 of 80 | Posted by: Jennifer Pierce - Sarasota, FL

“Dear Belinda, My deepest condolences to you and the Termeer family. Henri was a visionary with tremendous humility and brilliant leadership. He did...Read More »
54 of 80 | Posted by: Canwen Jiang - Southboro, MA

“Dear Belinda, I was so deeply saddened to hear of Henri's passing. On behalf of all of us in the Northeastern community, please accept my heartfelt...Read More »
55 of 80 | Posted by: Joseph Aoun - Boston, MA - Friend

“Balinda, I am sorry for your loss..I recall many fun times with you and Henri while working with Genzyme...he was a good man. Your Old Friend, Brian...Read More »
56 of 80 | Posted by: Brian McCourt - New York - Friend

“Mr. Termeer was such a tremendous and giving man. He will be sorely missed but his work will live on. Myself and all of us at Voices of Hope will...Read More »
57 of 80 | Posted by: Greg Chastain - Winchester, MA

“Far too soon!! ...Henri was a dear friend and Business associate who I will dearly miss... we worked together during our mutual tenures at Baxter and...Read More »
58 of 80 | Posted by: Ted Jope - La Canada, CA - Friend

“Dear Belinda and family,I am so sorry for your loss. I had to opportunity to get to know Henri at Genzyme. He came to my desk on my third day of...Read More »
59 of 80 | Posted by: Kristina Woessner - Missoula, MT

“May I express my sincerest condolences on the passing of Henri. While we never crossed paths professionally, having joined Sanofi Genzyme only last...Read More »
60 of 80 | Posted by: Darren Baker - Hingham, MA

“My deepest condolences to Termeer family. I have know Henry for only a few years serving on two boards together. I enjoyed his conversations, charm...Read More »
61 of 80 | Posted by: Fariborz Maseeh - Newport Beach, CA

“I met Henri a few times over the years and I was always struck by his grace and compassion. Last year I ran into Henri at an awards gala and I took...Read More »
62 of 80 | Posted by: Christine White - Ottawa, ON

“Dear Henri,On multiple occasions we bumped into each other on board Delta flights between Amsterdam and Boston when we both were on the same mission:...Read More »
63 of 80 | Posted by: Hans Gieskes - DEDHAM, MA

“Henri Termeer taught me by his shining example how to run a major biotech company while being at the same time a valuable and valued member of the...Read More »
64 of 80 | Posted by: Joshua Boger - Boston, MA

“Henri has been a great mentor to me over the years. We started Lysosomal Therapeutics, Inc. together and have developed a wonderful friendship...Read More »
65 of 80 | Posted by: Dimitri Krainc - Chicago, MA

“Passionate, determined, optimistic, instructive, encouraging, non-judgmental, kind, visionary, fair, exacting, lovingthe Henri Termeer we will all...Read More »
66 of 80 | Posted by: Jack & Deborah Heffernan - ME

“Dear Henri,Rest in peace. Your energy, vision and influence will be missed. Only you knew the influence you had on my career as an inspirational...Read More »
67 of 80 | Posted by: Gary Ostroff - Worcester, MA

“Dear Henri: It was a pleasure to have known and worked with you on the Mass General Hospital's board. Your brilliance and generosity to the Life...Read More »
68 of 80 | Posted by: Colette Phillips - Brookline, MA

“Hope realized for so many who were forgotten. Gratitude to you and your family. <br />Run up ahead and I will catch up, 'cause I'm...Read More »
69 of 80 | Posted by: Debbie Poire-Magee - Derry, NH

“Dear Belinda and Family,I am so very sorry for the sudden death of Henri. He was a beacon of light to both me and everyone else who entered into the...Read More »
70 of 80 | Posted by: Amy Dasch - needham, MA

“I have a great deal respect for Henri and his accomplishments as a businessman, an industry leader, CEO and as a human being. It is not a stretch to...Read More »
71 of 80 | Posted by: Bill Aliski - Boston, MA

“Belinda, we are so deeply and profoundly sad for you and your entire family. Henri was an extraordinary human being and his loss to the world is...Read More »
72 of 80 | Posted by: Lorie Umanita - Rowley, MA

“You will never be forgotten. In our hearts, you will forever remain. Goodbye to you, dear Henri. You will be dearly missed, but every one of us...Read More »
73 of 80 | Posted by: Karen Peloquin - Winchester, MA

“Our deepest condolences to Termeer family. Henri was a great friend, mentor, and inspiration. He led a revolution in industry and created a legacy...Read More »
74 of 80 | Posted by: Bob Mulroy - Belmont, MA - Friend

“I am sorry to hear of Henri's passing. I worked for Genzyme from 1990-1998. I got to observe Henri's Leadership and drive to create a successful...Read More »
75 of 80 | Posted by: Edward Wisniewski - West Peabody, MA

“When my job hunt started, my goal was to work at Genzyme because of the amazing reputation. I started September 1990 with Genzyme Genetics and I'...Read More »
76 of 80 | Posted by: Paula Finn - Salem, MA - coworker

“The Greek Gaucher community in Greece and the Greek Lysosomal Association will always remember you dear Henri for having a vision and determination...Read More »
77 of 80 | Posted by: CHARI - ATHENS - Coworker

“My deepest condolences to Belinda and family. I had the good fortune of working for Genzyme 1989-1996 and to have known Henri and Belinda. He will be...Read More »
78 of 80 | Posted by: Leslynn Pierson - Englewood, FL

“Henri, you were one-of-a-kind. Non-pareil. The Mentor of all Mentors. So many of us looked to you for guidance, judgment, wisdom, the right thing to...Read More »
79 of 80 | Posted by: John Hawkins - New York, NY

“Henri, you were the most inspirational leader I've ever known. ”
80 of 80 | Posted by: Barbara Langston - Lexington, MA


Henri A. Termeer, former Chairman, President and CEO of Genzyme Corporation for nearly three decades, died suddenly on Friday night, May 12, 2017. He was 71 years old.

Henri Termeer believed you could change the world and he did so for many people suffering from devastating diseases. He often said that if we can create medicines to help people, it is our responsibility to do so no matter how complex or difficult the task. Under his leadership, he fulfilled this mission and in doing so grew Genzyme from a modest entrepreneurial venture to one of the world's leading biotechnology companies and a pioneer of some of the first treatments for rare genetic diseases. He is regarded widely as one of the founders of Boston's biotech industry.

Henri was a charismatic visionary with strong humanity and humility. His warmth, humor and optimistic nature could successfully inspire and bring people together. He took the time to talk to patients and their families to understand their needs and challenges, then was a passionate champion of finding medical solutions to help them. Many patients took the time to tell him how grateful they were for all he did to give them a chance to live a better life. In return, he told them how brave and courageous they were, inspiring him and Genzyme employees to work harder and creating a workplace that was centered around patients.

Henri was generous in his support of many colleagues and employees as a mentor and inspiration. He built a strong entrepreneurial culture based on science, innovation on behalf of the patients, and respect for individuals.

Henri was both forward-thinking and reflective. He delighted in telling the many stories of Genzyme – both successes and failures. He was especially proud of the risks taken on behalf of patients and families in the early days of Genzyme. He stayed active in biotech after leaving Genzyme and never lost his love of launching and building companies.

Widely acknowledged for his contributions to the biotechnology industry and health care field, Henri continued to support the next generation of biotech companies and health care leaders. He was generous with his time and sought after for his advice. Scores of biotech leaders consider him their mentor. Henri served on many boards of early-stage biotech companies. His intellect was also sought in the non profit world where he served as a board member of Massachusetts General Hospital, Partners Health Care, Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Project HOPE, the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO), and the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers Association (PHRMA). He was a member of the board of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston from 2007-2011 and the chairman from 2010-2011. Henri was a long-time supporter of the Biomedical Science Careers Program, which provides minority students with the support and guidance needed for successful careers in biomedical science.

More important to him than all his achievements in industry, were his family. He was a loving and devoted husband and proud father. Henri is survived by his beloved wife, Belinda and their daughter, Adriana, and his son Nicholas and wife Sophie. He was one of 6 children, and was strongly influenced by his compassionate mother. He is also survived by two sisters, Ineke and her husband Jan Wim Taminiau of France; and Marlies Verduijn of the Netherlands; and three brothers, Bert and his wife Els, Paul and his wife Mill, and Roel and wife Karen, all of the Netherlands. He was a beloved uncle to many nieces and nephews and brother-in-law to Belinda's sisters and brothers.

Henri's greatest love in life was for his wife and children. Watching his daughter perform ballet brought him so much joy. He was so proud of the beautiful young woman his daughter Adriana was becoming. Henri relished their deep conversations on world issues and politics and was thrilled when she joined her high school debate team. He took great pride in attending his son Nicholas' college graduation and wedding to Sophie and was so pleased when she became pregnant with twins. Only on Friday, did he learn he would be 'opa' (grandpa) to twin girls.

Henri's passions often involved the ocean – spending time with his family at their home in Maine and sailing on his boat, Tijuba. Family travel adventures took the Termeers to the far corners of the world and on regular trips to Europe to visit family and friends. He was a voracious reader and his library reflected his interest in business and politics.

Belinda and Henri Termeer are recognized throughout greater Boston for their generosity and involvement, together and as individuals, with concerns ranging from the arts, science, health care, education, equal opportunity and human rights. They were active supporters and Board members of WGBH, the Boston Museum of Science, and Boston Ballet.

Henri was born in Tilburg, The Netherlands on February 28, 1946. He studied economics at the Economische Hogeschool (Erasmus University, The Netherlands) and earned an MBA from the Darden Business School at the University of Virginia. Following a 10-year career with Baxter Travenol (now Baxter International), was appointed president of Genzyme in 1983, two years after the company's founding. He became its chief executive officer in 1985 and chairman in 1988. He retired from Genzyme in June 2011 following the acquisition of Genzyme by Sanofi in a transaction valued at more than $20 billion.

Henri affected thousands of people and he succeeded in his mission of leaving this world a better place.

Family and friends will honor and remember Henri's life by gathering for calling hours in The Joyce Funeral Home, 245 Main Street (Rte. 20), Waltham on Friday, May 19th from 3 to 8 p.m. A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, May 20th in Kresge Auditorium at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 48 Massachusetts Avenue in Cambridge at a 11:00 a.m. A reception will follow until 2 pm. A Funeral Mass will be celebrated on Monday, May 22nd in Our Lady Star of the Sea Church, 85 Atlantic Avenue, Marblehead at

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