William (Bill) Eugene GERKEN and |
Linda L. Gerken
William (Bill) Eugene Gerken passed away peacefully Saturday, July 13, 2013 at his home in Kirkland. He fought a courageous fight with cancer, outliving his initial diagnosis.
Bill was born Sept. 19, 1940, in Norfolk, Nebraska and later moved to Colorado. He graduated from Aurora H.S. in 1958. He attended Colorado School of Mines for one year and then joined the U.S. Navy. He loved Naval Air and served in HATRON 10 aboard the USS Constellation.
He met his wife of 49 years while stationed at Whidbey Island, as she was finishing her degree at WWU in Bellingham. They were married Nov. 23, 1963. They moved to Kirkland in 1965. Bill graduated from UW, and then worked for Boeing until his retirement. He enjoyed 12 years of retirement, which included taking up golf, running the local, state, and regional Elks "Hoop Shoot" program, continuing his avid support of UW sports, Seahawks football, and taking cruises.
Bill spent over 40 years devoted to the Elks "Hoop Shoot" program. He loved seeing the boys & girls (ages 8-13) shoot their hoops. He was a member of the Sammamish Elks Lodge.
Bill was so terribly missed by his wife Linda; she passed away 6 days later, on July 19 in Bellevue.
Linda was born Dec. 21, 1942 at Bellingham, WA. Linda received her degree from WWU, and worked as a teacher in Lake Washington School District for 30 years, teaching 1st & 2nd grades. She was dedicated to all of her students, especially the children with autism.
Linda enjoyed working with Bill on their many trips running the "Hoop Shoot" contest, sponsored by the Elks foundation.
Linda is survived by her brother Brian Johnson, and many dear friends, along with Bill & Linda's cat Fritz.
Services for both Bill and Linda will be 1 pm, Wednesday, July 24th in the Sunset Hills Funeral Home, 1215 145th PL SE, Bellevue, WA 98007. Interment Sunset Hills Memorial park.
In lieu of Flowers; donations may be made to Washington Elks Therapy for Children, PO Box 110760, Tacoma, Washington 98411-0760 or Elks National Foundation for Hoop Shoot, 2750 N. Lakeview Ave. Chicago, IL 60614-2256. See www.sunsethillsfuneralhome.com.
Published in The Seattle Times on July 21, 2013