Lorena F. Gehrke, age 93, of Spencer, passed away on Thursday, April 23, 2020 at Stoney River Assisted Living in Marshfield under the care of St. Croix Hospice.
Funeral Services will be held privately at Life Tributes Funeral Home in Spencer with Rev. Daryn Bahn officiating. Lorena will be laid to rest in the Trinity Lutheran Cemetery in the Town of Brighton. A Celebration of Life will be held when everyone can gather and hug safely.
Lorena was born on January 20, 1927 at home in the Town of Sherman, Clark County, the daughter of Munson B. and Florence (Schroeder) Vanderhoof. She attended Veefkind Elementary School and graduated from Loyal High School. She later took some classes at the Teacher’s College in Eau Claire. On June 7, 1947, she was united in marriage to Russell A. Gehrke at Salem Lutheran Church in the Town of Sherman, Clark County. Sadly, he passed away on February 19, 1996. Together they lived on a farm in the Town of Sherman until 1958 when they bought a house and moved into the Village of Spencer. Along with being a dedicated housewife and mother to her children, she worked as a janitor at Trinity Lutheran Church for 18 years.
She was an active member of Trinity Lutheran Church and taught Sunday school for 40 years. She also held the title of Secretary and Treasurer for the Spencer American Legion Auxiliary for about 50 years.
Lorena enjoyed gardening and was skilled at sewing and embroidering work. She loved to sing and loved to bake everything from cookies to pies and cakes. She would always have something baking in the oven when her children and grandchildren would come to visit.
Survivors include her children: Larry (Roger Bottorff) Gehrke of Chicago, IL, Dianne (Ronald) Currie of Spencer and Peggy (Craig) Brandt of Loyal; her granddaughters: Erin (Chris Hesselbein) Currie of Portland, OR and Sarah (Matthew) West of Neenah and her great-grandchildren: Elizabeth and Nathan West. She is further survived by her brother, Robert (Donna) Vanderhoof of Northfield, MN; her sisters-in-law Arlene Gehrke of Zephrhills, FL and Ilse Vanderhoof of Roy, Utah and many nieces and nephews, great-nieces and nephews, other relatives and friends.
Lorena is preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Russell; her son, Wayne; her brothers: Harvey died in infancy, Albert and Munson, Jr.; her sister, Janet Ertl; her brother-in-law, Orin Gehrke and her niece and godchild, Carey Probasco.
In lieu of flowers, the family will be accepting memorials in Lorena’s name for a charity to be determined later.
The family would like to give a special thank you to the staff at Stoney River Assisted Living and St. Croix Hospice for the wonderful care that they provided for her. She would always have a great, big smile for them.
Lorena’s arrangements are under the care of Life Tributes Funeral Home-Spencer. Please visit www.lifetributesfuneralhome.com to share thoughts and condolences.