Audrey L. Gerlach_______________________________
Audrey Louise Gerlach, a twin and the youngest of five children,
was born January 31, 1919, to Oscar and Mary (Weinandy) Lund on a ranch near Faith, S.D. Audrey's mother passed away two days later. Her father was left to
raise five children, two of them newborns and the oldest only five years old.
Audrey and her siblings attended the one-room school at Arrowhead where their father drove the horse-drawn school bus. After graduating from Faith High School in 1936, she and her twin sister Joan came to Rapid City to
attend Black Hills Business College and stayed to work for Buckingham Transportation Company. It was during these pre-World War II years that she met Chuck Gerlach. They were married on her birthday in 1942.
Within weeks of their wedding, Chuck enlisted in the U.S. Navy and Audrey spent the next few years living and working in Civil Service positions in Bremerton, Wash., and Portsmouth, Va., both places where Chuck was stationed when not deployed aboard the small aircraft carrier, the U.S.S. Guadalcanal.
Following the war they returned to Rapid City where they made their home until her death. Audrey was a meticulous and talented homemaker, a devoted mother, constant helpmate to her husband of 71 years, and stalwart to their extended family. Her door was always open and guests warmly welcome. When they arrived with no advance notice at meal time, the table was quickly reset, and a nourishing and tasty repast seemed to effortlessly appear.
Whatever the task, there was never anyone who worked harder, faster, with greater energy or more humility than Audrey. When there was need, she was there.
Once her children were raised, Audrey worked for a number of years at a local jewelry store, retiring from Obergs Jewelry in 1984. She was an active member of the Rapid City community and many of its organizations but was particularly involved with the First Presbyterian Church where she served as an elder and actively participated in the Presbyterian Women's Association. She was also a Past Matron of Golden Link Chapter 14, Order of the Eastern Star, a member of Nydia Club and Daughters of the Nile.
She and Chuck loved socializing with their many friends and family members, whether traveling and camping in their motor home, playing cards, or sitting together after a good meal she had served, telling stories.Their gatherings and the home she created were filled with love and laughter.
Audrey died Monday, August 26, 2013. She is survived by her two children, Linda Brady, Littleton, Colo., and Mel Gerlach, Prescott, Ariz.; her twin sister, Joan Ebert, and brother, Gene Lund, both of Rapid City; four grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her parents, a sister, Eudora Walters, and a brother, Vern Lund. Her husband, Chuck, died on Saturday, September 7, 2013.
Memorial services will be at 10:30 on Friday, September 13, at the First Presbyterian Church in Rapid City. Interment will follow in Black Hills National Cemetery.
Memorials may be directed to First Presbyterian Church in Rapid City.
Arrangements are with Osheim & Schmidt Funeral Home in Rapid City.
Her online guestbook is available to sign at www.osheimschmidt.com.