Wallace August Gehrke, born June 21, 1926, in Flaxton, N.D., to August and Josephine Gehrke, died Sept. 20, 2012, at Banner Heart Hospital in Mesa, Ariz.
Upon his graduation from Flaxton High School, Wallace attended the North Dakota State School of Science in Wahpeton, where he graduated with a degree in accounting/business. He served in World War II from 1944 to 1946 in the U.S. Navy aboard the USS Maryland in the South Pacific.
In 1947, Wally married Beverly J. Christianson of Coteau, N.D., and subsequently worked in telecommunications for more than 40 years, residing in Ellendale, Mohall, Minot, and Fargo, N.D.
Beverly and Wally have spent their retirement years in Mesa, Ariz. Along with being a sports fan, Wally also enjoyed traveling, spending time with his family, and had been an active member of Christ Lutheran Church in Minot and Messiah Lutheran Church in Fargo, N.D. He and Beverly were members of St. Peter Lutheran Church in Mesa at the time of his passing.
He is survived by: his wife of 65 years; two sons, Greg (Becky), of Phoenix, Ariz., and Brad (Kathy), Albuquerque, N.M., and one daughter. Barb (Steve) Blikre, Minot, N.D. Wally was especially proud of his eight grandchildren: Kelly (Bob) Lyle, of Austin, Texas; Jay Gehrke, Scottsdale, Ariz.; Brock (Jamie) Blikre, Mesa, Ariz.; Joshua (Trina) Blikre, Bismarck, N.D.; David (Mandie) Blikre, Minot, N.D.; Scott Gehrke, Tempe, Ariz.; James Gehrke, Albuquerque, N.M.; and John Gehrke, Tempe, Ariz., along with 12 great-grandchildren.
Family memorial service: A family memorial service will be held on Friday, Sept. 28, 2012, at St. Peters Lutheran Church in Mesa, Ariz.
Interment: Will follow at the National Memorial Cemetery, Phoenix, Ariz.
(Bunker Family Funeral Home, Mesa)