GILE, Wis. — Harold A. Gehrke, 65, of Montreal, accidentally drowned after launching his boat at the Gile Flowage landing on Tuesday afternoon, Aug. 27, 2013.
He was born Dec. 14, 1947, in Ironwood, Mich ., son of Delores (Dietel) and the late Donald Gehrke, attended Hurley schools, and graduated from J.E. Murphy High School in 1968. He was employed at White Pine Copper Co. for several years before a work-related injury forced his retirement.
Harold was an avid fisherman and enjoyed making his own lures. He also enjoyed deer hunting, gardening, four-wheeling and snowmobiling, and was a big Minnesota Vikings fan. He loved playing golf and was a member of the Gogebic Country Club. In his younger years, he bowled and played softball in Range area leagues. He especially loved his family and spending time with his grandchildren.
Harold was very outgoing and loved people. He will be deeply missed by all who knew and loved him.
He was married to the former Darlene Soine. They later divorced.
He then married Nancy J. Mattson on June 4, 1988, at the Gile Flowage. She survives.
Also surviving are three children, Tracy Gehrke (Gary Oman), Hurley, Gina (Jim) White, West Fargo, N.D ., and Jason Gehrke, Green Bay; five grandchildren, Dakota, Carli, Paige, Alyssa and Andrew; his mother, Delores Leoni, Hurley; three sisters, Charlotte Ware and Susan Miller, both of Milwaukee, and Debbie LaVerdure, Ironwood; a half sister, Caroleanne Pufall, Minneapolis; three half brothers, Gary Leoni, Hurley, and Dennis (Amy) Leoni and Joe (Kay) Leoni, both of Gile; brothers-in-law, Dennis (Carol) Mattson, Ironwood, Jerry (Mary) Mattson, Iron Belt, and David (Doreen) Mattson, Meridian, Idaho; numerous aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and cousins; and his beloved chocolate Lab, Katie.
Besides his father, he was preceded in death by his stepfather, Guido Leoni; half brother, Donald Gehrke; and sister-in-law, Cathy Leoni.
Per Harold’s wishes, cremation has taken place.
Memorial services will be held Tuesday, Sept. 3, at 11 a.m ., preceded by visitation beginning at 9 a.m ., at the McKevitt-Patrick Funeral Home, 305 N. Lowell St ., in Ironwood, with the Rev. Kurt Kovanen officiating.
Luncheon will follow at Manny’s in Ironwood.
Harold’s obituary may be viewed online and condolences given to his family at mckevittpatrickfuneralhome.com.
Arrangements have been entrusted to McKevitt-Patrick Funeral Home and Cremation Services of Ironwood.