Obituary for Jerry Joe Gratke

sign guestbook

Image of
Jerry Joe Gratke, 81, of La Crosse, WI passed away peacefully at home on March 8th, 2018. He was born April 21st, 1936 to Harvey and Mildred (Carmen) Gratke in South Dakota. The family soon moved to WI where Jerry grew up in Genoa and graduated from Desoto High School in 1955.
He proudly served in the US Navy from 1955 to 1959. During this time, he met his wife, of 59 years, Gloria (Hendrickson) Gratke who he married on June 14th, 1958. They then had twins, a girl and a boy, in November of 1959 and settled in La Crosse WI. He worked for Trane Company for 41 years as a welder and special tools technician.
During his life, he especially loved spending time on family events with his children and his grandchildren. In his free time, he enjoyed playing softball and trap shooting for Trane Company. Many of his hobbies included fishing, hunting, golfing, camping, cards and horseshoes. Jerry and wife enjoyed a long retirement, taking many trips and wintering for 14 years in Arizona.
He is survived by his wife Gloria, his daughter Rhonda Von Arx, his son Raymond (Annette) Gratke, and four grandchildren Leah Gratke, Klaus Von Arx, Alex Gratke and Katrina Von Arx. Also surviving is one sister, Edith von Gradtke and many brother and sister in-laws, nieces, nephews, cousins and many close friends.
He was preceded in death by his mother Mildred Gratke and father Harvey Gratke. Sister, Peggy (Gratke) Garvalia, and a son in-law, Charles Von Arx.
Funeral services will be held on Wednesday, March 14th at 11:30 a.m. at Faith United Methodist Church, 1818 Redfield Street, La Crosse. Pastor Karen Bankes will officiate and burial with military honors will be held in the Riverside Cemetery, Genoa, WI. Friends may visit with the family on Wednesday at the church from 9:30 a.m. until time of services. The Dickinson Family Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements. Online condolences may be given at