He was born on Aug. 13, 1930, to Rudolph and Frances (Cozik) Gerke in Fort Wayne. Paul graduated from South Side High School in 1948 and went on to serve his country honorably in the 1st Division Marine Corps in the Korean War. On Sept. 5, 1953, he married Helen Bredemeyer at the Emmaus Lutheran Church in Fort Wayne. She survives.
He worked as a self-employed Plumbing and Heating Specialist. Paul was a member of the Trinity Lutheran Church in Ligonier, the American Legion, VFW and the DAV.
He is survived by his wife; four children: Vicki (Mark) Ober, Lori (Scott) Wilkins, Pastor David (Candace) Gerke, Tracey (Michael) Noe; seven grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren; three brothers: Richard, John and Kenneth; a half-brother: Ronald Woods.
He was preceded in death by his parents; three brothers: Rudolph, Robert and Walter; one sister: Dorothy Woods.
Visitation will be from 2:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 28, Yeager Funeral Home, 1589 Lincolnway South, Ligonier, and from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. Wednesday, Oct. 29, at Trinity Lutheran Church. A funeral service will be held in Mr. Gerke’s honor at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Oct. 29, at the church with Pastor Schamehorn and Pastor Gerke officiating. Burial will be in Concordia Lutheran Cemetery, Lake Avenue, Fort Wayne.
Memorial contributions may be directed to Trinity Lutheran Church, American Legion Ligonier Post or Wounded Warrior.com.
The Yeager Funeral Home in Ligonier is assisting the family with arrangements. Online Condolences may be sent to the family at www.yeagerfuneralhome.com
Arrangements are currently pending at Yeager Funeral Home in Ligonier.