Obituary mugshot

BELVIDERE – Lillian Gierke, 98, of Fremont, was called out of this life into eternal life as a gift of God’s grace through faith in Jesus Christ, on Sunday, Aug. 2. She has received the consummation of her Baptism, the crown of eternal life, and celebrates the Resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ at his throne in heaven.

Lillian Eleanora Gierke was born in Odessa, Minn., on April 22, 1917, a gift of God to her parents, Max and Minna (Struck) Schmeichel.

She was received into the Kingdom of God through Holy Baptism on May 3, 1917, at Trinity Lutheran Church in Odessa. After her years of growing up on the Schmeichel Family Farm outside Odessa, she graduated from Odessa High School on May 31, 1934.

On June 23, 1940, she was married to the Rev. Arnold Gierke at Trinity Lutheran Church, Odessa, Minn., and they moved to the mission field of eastern Montana, where they worked in the beginning of two mission congregations.

In 1949, she and her family moved to Butte, Mont., serving St. Mark Lutheran Church, where they lived until 1958. They then moved to Belvidere, Ill., where they served Immanuel Lutheran Church and School, until and following Pastor Gierke’s retirement in 1978.

In 1987, they moved to Fremont, Neb., to be near family. Her husband, Arnold, died on January 10, 1994. While in Fremont, they were members at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church.

During her life, she served as Sunday school teacher, Lutheran Women’s Missionary League and Altar Guild member, and managed the Cradle Roll. She also served in Belvidere as a long-time hospital auxiliary volunteer.

Those who remain to honor her life are three sons: the Rev. Charles (Joyce) Gierke of Omaha; the Rev. Eugene (Linda) Gierke of Seward; the Rev. Timothy (Barbara) Gierke of Fremont; one daughter, Karen (the Rev. Wilbur) Gehrke of Forest Grove, Oregon; also the following grandchildren; Gail (David) Black; Paul (Jennie) Gierke; the Rev. John (Tonya) Gierke; Karin (Thane) Jensen; Sean Gierke; Julie (John) Lazarchic; Jeff (Chris) Gierke; Mark, Andrea, Amy and Debbie Gehrke; Kristin (Joel) Knott; Jeremy (Mindy) Gierke; twenty-two great-grandchildren; sisters-in-law Joanne Schmeichel of Odessa, and Elaine Daugherty of Henderson, Nevada.

Her husband, her daughter Judy, a grandson Brian, and several great-grandchildren including Isaac, were waiting to greet her upon her arrival in heaven, as were her parents, Max and Minnie Schmeichel, her parents-in-law, the Rev. Albert and Rosa Gierke, her brothers, Rudy (Marion) and Marvin, her sisters, Edna (John Busse/Bud Holzheimer), and Marcia (John) Kaercher, aunts, uncles and cousins.

The Rev. Russell Sommerfeld, President Emeritus of the Nebraska District, LCMS, will proclaim the Word of God, and the Rev. Dr. David Coe, Associate Pastor of Trinity Lutheran Church, lead the celebration of her life and eternal life on Friday, Aug. 7, at 10 a.m., held at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, 1544 E. Military, Fremont.

Visitation was held at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church on Thursday, Aug. 6, from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Family members were present from 6 p.m. to 8p.m.

Her body was laid to rest at Ridge Cemetery in Fremont, to wait in peace the day of the Resurrection.  Memorials may be listed to Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, Lutheran Hour Ministries, and Mission Central LCMS.

Ludvigsen Mortuary in Fremont is in charge of arrangements.

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