Cover photo for Barbara Ann Gerke's Obituary

Barbara Ann Gerke

August 18, 1946 — May 16, 2024

Lancaster, Pennsylvania

Barbara M Gerke, 77, of Lancaster passed away on Thursday, May 16, 2024 at home. She was the loving wife of Darrell Gerke with whom she was married for 55 wonderful years. She was born in Lancaster, PA, daughter of Thomas W. and Barbara May Meredith.

Barbara graduated from Hempfield High School in 1964 and was a graduation speaker. She also performed the lead in the junior and senior year musicals. Barbara received a BA (Humanities 1968) and a MA (Library and Media Science 1974) from Purdue University where she was a member of Alpha Chi Omega sorority. 

Following graduation, she was the school librarian at Attica H. S., Attica, IN. for two years. After moving to Lancaster in 1974, Barbara worked at Hempfield as the librarian in the Centerville and Landisville Middle Schools. She was very proud to have designed the library rooms in the new Landisville Middle School. Barbara started an annual book drive where the students collected over 150,000 books that were donated to the Lancaster Public Library. She retired after a 32-year career in 2006. 

Barbara was a member of Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church in Landisville since 1974, taught an adult Sunday School class for over 30 years and sang in the contemporary choir. She was a member of The Coterie Club where she played in several bridge groups while also teaching bridge classes. She served several years on the Hempfield Foundation board helping to raise money for college scholarships. Barbara volunteered for Resort, the fundraising branch of the Lancaster Public Library that collects, sorts, stores and sells donated used books in the annual book sale. 

Barbara was a voracious reader and always had her nose in a book, reading, reading and reading. She never met a book that she didn’t like. 

Upon her retirement, she and Darrell started to travel overseas including their dream cruise from Argentina to Antarctica and back through the Drake Passage in 2008 to celebrate their 40th anniversary. Barbara enjoyed various sports. She played tennis and basketball in high school and enjoyed watching high school and college basketball, especially the Purdue men’s basketball games. She enjoyed auto racing by attending several Indy 500 races while at Purdue and recently became a Formula One fan so that she could discuss race strategy with grandsons Michael and Will.

She is survived by her husband and children, Holly Steger (Mark), Lancaster and Matthew (Laura Anderson, fiancé), Denver, CO; grandsons, Michael and William Steger, Lancaster, Elvis Morara (Sofia), Boston, MA and brother, Thomas Meredith (Kim) Lancaster, 5 nephews and 3 nieces. 

Relatives and friends are respectfully invited to attend a Celebration of Life service at Zion Lutheran Church, 85 E. Brandt Blvd., Landisville, PA 17538 on Saturday, June 1 at 11:00 am with Rev. Timothy Seitz-Brown officiating. Friends may greet the family in the Social Room after the service where lunch will be served. Interment will be scheduled with family at a later date. Please omit flowers. Memorial contributions may be made in Barbara’s honor to the Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church, endowment fund and to Resort, in care of the Lancaster Public Library, 151 N. Queen Street, Lancaster, PA 17603.

 

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Barbara Ann Gerke, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Memorial Service

Saturday, June 1, 2024

11:00am - 12:00 pm (Eastern time)

Add to Calendar

Celebration of Life service at Zion Lutheran Church, 85 E. Brandt Blvd., Landisville, PA 17538 on Saturday, June 1 at 11:00 am with Rev. Timothy Seitz-Brown officiating. Friends may greet the family in the Social Room after the service where lunch will be served. Interment will be scheduled with family at a later date. Please omit flowers. Memorial contributions may be made in Barbara’s honor to the Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church, endowment fund and to Resort, in care of the Lancaster Public Library, 151 N. Queen Street, Lancaster, PA 17603.

*Standard text messaging rates apply.

Guestbook

Visits: 482

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the
Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Service map data © OpenStreetMap contributors