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Geraldine Ann “Gerri” Schmelzle
Arensberg-Pruett Funeral Home in Atchison
Effingham , KS

Geraldine Ann “Gerri” Schmelzle, age 95, of Effingham, Kansas, formerly of Seneca and Nortonville, Kansas, passed away Friday, August 27, 2021 at Medicalodge of Atchison.

Mass of Christian burial will be Saturday, September 11, 2021 at 11:00 a.m. at St. Ann’s Church in Effingham, Kansas with Rev. Hughes Sundeme as celebrant. Interment of cremated remains will follow in St. Ann’s Church Cemetery. Visitation with the family will be on Friday, September 10th from 6:00 p.m. until 7:30 p.m. at the Arensberg-Pruett Funeral Home. The family will also receive friends from 10:30 until 11:00 a.m. Saturday at the church. Memorial contributions are suggested to St. Ann’s Church or Town & Country Senior Center, Effingham, KS, and may be left in care of the Arensberg-Pruett Funeral Home, Atchison, Kansas.

Geraldine was born on September 27, 1925, in Corning, Kansas, the daughter of Frank and Amelia (Heinen) Wilhelm. She attended St. Bede’s Catholic School in Kelly, Kansas, and Head Community School for two years in rural Seneca, Kansas.

She and Carl Schmelzle were united in marriage on February 6, 1945, at St. Bede’s Catholic Church in Kelly, Kansas. They were married for nearly sixty years before Carl’s passing on November 17, 2003.

While raising her children, Gerri worked alongside Carl at their auto repair shop as the bookkeeper and parts runner and drove a school bus for Jefferson County North school district. After closing the shop, she worked at Rockwell International for nine years and then was a nurse’s aide at Jefferson County Geriatric Center in Winchester, Kansas, until her retirement.

She was a member of St. Ann’s Church in Effingham and an active member of the church Altar Society; she was a member of American Legion Auxiliary #285 in Effingham. Gerri enjoyed woodcrafts, embroidering and quilt making. She was most proud of being a mother, grandmother and a homemaker.

She is survived by her seven children, including three daughters: Mary Werner, Effingham, KS, Dorothy (Dick) Bockelman, Shawnee, KS, Betty Parhomek, Topeka, KS; four sons, Donald Schmelzle, Nortonville, KS, Jim (Virginia) Schmelzle, Topeka, KS, Tom (Carol) Schmelzle, Independence, MO, Mike Schmelzle, Effingham, KS; three sisters-in-law, Peggy, Arlene and Ann Wilhelm; numerous grandchildren, great grandchildren, great-great grandchildren and a very special friend, Mary Ann Krier.

Gerri was preceded in death by her husband, Carl; two children, George Schmelzle, Linda Eaton; two grandchildren, David Bockelman, Carl Dean Smith; a great granddaughter, Heather James and two infant great grandchildren, five brothers and one sister.

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