Theodore Gehrke
1939 - 2019
{ "" }
Share Theodore's life story with friends and family
Send an Email
Or Copy this URL to Share
Theodore Gehrke
Apr. 1, 1939 - Feb. 23, 2019
Res. of Santa Cruz Mtns.
Ted was born in Portland, OR on April 1, 1939 to Leonard and Eugenia (Taylor) Gehrke. He married Elizabeth Turner in 1967 and soon moved to the Bay Area. In 1972 he became the SJSU Student Union Program Board Advisor where he remained for 30 years. In 1981 they inaugurated the San Jose State Fountain Blues Festival (now the San Jose Fountain Blues and Brews Festival), still going strong.
He was an active member of Redwood Estates community, residing there for 46 years.
He is survived by his wife, Elizabeth; daughters, Lucia Arredondo, Sierra Gehrke and Crystal Hoffman; granddaughters, Evangeline "Eva" Belle and Josephine "Josie" Jane Arredondo.
On behalf of Ted and the family, donations can be made to the non-profit San Jose Fountain Blues and Brews Festival at Please attend the 38th Festival, Sat, June 22, 2-8 PM at Cesar Chavez Park.
A Memorial Gala will take place Sat, March 30. Please email Elizabeth at for details. Another special tribute will take place at a later date at San Jose's Poor House Bistro. Check

View the online memorial for Theodore Gehrke

To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published in San Jose Mercury News/San Mateo County Times on Mar. 17, 2019.
No memorial events are currently scheduled. To offer your sympathy during this difficult time, you can now have memorial trees planted in a National Forest in memory of your loved one.
Memories & Condolences
Guest Book sponsored by San Jose Mercury News
Not sure what to say?
3 entries
March 31, 2019
I never knew you Ted but I certainly had MANY good musical times due to your efforts. Thanks for all the great blues shows!!
March 18, 2019
He was a great mentor to many students who were members of the SJSU Program Board, including me.
Edmund Attanasio
March 18, 2019
It comes with great sadness to do this after so long of knowing you Ted and to going to you great festivals

I have been going to you festivals off and on for the last 20 years ever since it was at SJSU and through the years it kept on getting better and better

I'm sure this time around you'll be looking down upon all of us from up above

Ted, I want to thank you for all you've done through the years and decades for your love of music

See ya again someday
Juan Arjona
Invite others to add memories
Share to let others add their own memories and condolences