Mary Pekron, age 80, of Philip, S.D., died Wednesday, October 10, 2012, at the Hans P. Peterson Memorial Hospital in Philip.
Mary A. Gottsleben was born January 18, 1932, in Philip, the daughter of William and Helen (Gehan) Gottsleben. She grew up on a farm-ranch northwest of Philip, and attended the Deadman Rural School in that area. She attended high school at St. Martin’s Academy in Sturgis, graduating in 1951. She then attended Black Hills State College in Spearfish, where she obtained her teaching certificate. She taught rural school at the Jones Rural School for three years and one year at the Malone Rural School near Milesville. Once their children were in school, she returned to teaching, and served as a substitute teacher and teacher's aide for numerous years.
Mary was united in marriage to Henry “Hank” Pekron on August 28, 1954, in Philip. They made their home in the Milesville area, where they worked on a ranch and later purchased their own ranch. They continued to ranch for over 50 years.
Due to health reasons, they moved into Philip in October 2007.
Her husband, Henry “Hank” Pekron, preceded her in death on August 27, 2010. Mary continued to reside in Philip until her death.
Mary was a member of the Sacred Heart Catholic Church of Philip, and a former member of St. Mary’s Catholic Church and Altar Society of Milesville.
Survivors include six children Nancy Ehrhardt and her husband, Rick, of Brandon, Steve Pekron and his wife, Nina, of Milesville, Beth Walker of Gillette, Wyo., Karen Kroetch and her husband, Jerry, of Philip, Theresa Pekron of Westminster, Colo., and Joe Pekron and his wife, Julie, of Hot Springs; 13 grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; one sister, Ann Pattno, and her husband, Tom, of Hastings, Neb.; a sister-in-law, Myrna Gottsleben, of Philip; several nieces and nephews; and a host of other relatives and friends.
In addition to her husband, Mary was preceded in death by her parents, and one brother, Jim Gottsleben.
Mass of Christian Burial was held Monday, October 15, at the Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Philip, with Father Kevin Achbach as celebrant.
Altar servers were Mike Gebes and Ben Stangle. Lectors were Linda Stangle and Joe Gittings. Eucharistic ministers were Don Schultz, Kelly Blair and Donna King.
Music was provided by Marianne Frien, pianist, and Maureen Palecek, vocalist. Ushers were Mike Gebes and Bill Gottsleben. Pallbearers were Ryan Hovland, Jeremiah Walker, Joshua Kroetch, Nathan Walker, Zane Pekron, Cody Pekron, Justin Pekron, and Jeff Goertz. Gift bearers were Melinda Coslet, Brooke Formanek, Katie Pekron, Allison Pekron and Grace Pekron.
Interment was at the Masonic Cemetery in Philip.
Arrangements are with the Rush Funeral Home of Philip.
Her online guestbook is available at www.rushfuneralhome.com