George A. Gierke, age 78, of Ashland passed away on Sunday, March 23, 2014 surrounded by loved ones.
George was born on February 22, 1936 in Bismarck, North Dakota to William and Esther (Lundin) Gierke, the youngest of seven children. He grew up in Bismarck, Broadus, and Miles City with his parents before enlisting in the Army when he was 18 years old. He proudly served the majority of his tour in Korea. Upon his return from the service, he worked for Regal Signs and Doyle Plumbing. George married the love of his life Iola Mae Hanson on February 1, 1958. They spent a few years on the Hanson Ranch before moving to Billings where he worked for a kitchen company drawing and designing kitchen plans. They moved back to Miles City in 1961, going to work for Meadow Gold Dairy. In 1962, George and Iola bought the Fritolay Franchise and started the story of their next 36 years, working together side by side, starting out in their garage and working their way into a 17,000 square foot building distributing chips, candy and tobacco products along with numerous other items all over southeastern Montana.
George enjoyed many things throughout his life including watching his children and grandchildren with anything they were involved with. He loved to dance, golf, bowl and shoot pool as well as camping, fishing, hunting, watching sports and of course being a member of the Montana Wholesale Distributors Association of which he spent a few terms as president. He was also a longtime member of the Lions Club. But most of all, George enjoyed a good story or a joke and making people smile and laugh; which he was quite good at.
George is survived by his wife of 56 years Iola Gierke; four children: Lance (Chris) and family; Jason and family, Allen (Brooke) and family and Tana Harn (Murray Brown) and family; along with thirteen grandchildren and their 10th great grandchild on the way; a brother Harold (Shirley) Gierke; two sisters: LaVern Day and Beverly (Wes) Hill and numerous nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents; two brothers: William “Bill” Gierke and Robert “Bud” Gierke; a sister Shirley Southworth and a great granddaughter Mackenzie Gierke.
Visitation was held on Thursday, March 27, 2014 at Stevenson & Sons Funeral Home in Miles City. Funeral services was held on Friday, March 28, 2014 at Grace Bible Church in Miles City. Interment will follow in the Custer County Cemetery with full military honors provided by VFW Post 1579. Condolences may be sent to the family by visiting: www.stevensonandsons.com.
Should friends desire, memorials may be made to Holy Rosary Hospice or a charity of one’s choice.
Published April 2, 2014