Obituaries

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February 2019
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Eugene L. Ghering, Jr.

Eugene L. Ghering, Jr., age 85 of Mesick, MI died February 15, 2019, in Goodyear, AZ.  He was born February 16, 1933, in Traverse City, MI the oldest of four children born to Jeanne and Eugene L. Ghering, Sr.  He worked as a supervisor in skill trades for General Motors in Flint, MI.   Gene had a love for all sports and the outdoors.  As a young man he was in the ski patrol and taught his older kids how to ski.  He loved fishing, hunting, hiking, golfing, camping, and passed his passion for these outdoor pastimes on to his children.  He was a true sportsman, but his greatest “catch” was his wife, Bonnie.  They met on an ice fishing date.  Together they raised eight children in their 66 years of marriage. 

Gene is survived by his wife, Verona “Bonnie” Ghering; daughters, Lynn (Tim) Clark, Terri (Robin) Spencer, Denise (Al) Robertson; sons Michael (Robin) Ghering, Eric Ghering, Tony (Kim) Ghering, Peter (Nikki) Ghering; sister, Elizabeth Ghering; brother, Tom Ghering; 22 grandchildren; 37 great-grandchildren; and many great-great-grandchildren.  He was preceded in death by his son, Mark Ghering; sister, Nancy Michelson; parents, Jeanne and Eugene L. Ghering, Sr.; and sister-in-law, Marion Ghering.

Robert “Jimmy” Gallegos

Robert “Jimmy” Gallegos, age 71 of Avondale, AZ died February 13, 2019, in Avondale, AZ.  He was born June 5, 1948, in Alamosa, CO, the oldest of six sons born to Elias Gallegos and Lola Gardunio.  At a young age, Robert moved with his family to Avondale, AZ.  He was a graduate of Agua Fria High School.  After high school, Robert joined the US Army, served in Vietnam and was awarded the Purple Heart.   Robert worked for A. M. Lewis Grocery as a lead mechanic.  He later worked as a line mechanic for Pepsico.  He was a hard working man who always provided for everything that his family would need or want.  Kind-hearted and compassionate, he would give food and money to others when he saw a need.

Robert met his wife, Mary Frances Jimenez when they were in high school.  He was the only boy that Mary ever dated. He would say that he was the wild child and she was the innocent, and he loved her for her virtue.  As his illness progressed, he would often call on Mary to bring him little things just so that he could be near her. He could always count on Mary for whatever he needed and Mary centered her life around him.  They were married for 49 years.

Robert had a wonderful sense of humor and always had a smile on his face.  Outspoken and honest, he would often voice his opinion.  He loved cars, especially Corvettes and was the proud owner of 6 Corvettes over the years.   As he grew older he loved to sit in the sun and feel its warmth.  He loved it when his family came to visit.  His children always felt his love for them.  His grandchildren meant everything to him and he loved each of them for their uniqueness.

Robert is survived by his wife, Mary Frances Gallegos; daughter, Erika Gallegos; son, Jim Gallegos; brothers, Lee, Edren, Richard, and Sonny Gallegos; and grandchildren, Mia Almanza, Jacob Gallegos, and Xavier Lafarga.  He was preceded in death by his mother, Lola Gardunio; father, Elias Gallegos, and brothers, Thomas Gallegos and Ernie Gallegos.

A visitation will be held at 5:00 pm, Tuesday, February 19, 2019, at Thompson Funeral Chapel, 926 S. Litchfield Road, Goodyear, AZ  85338.  A rosary will be at 10:30 am, followed by a mass at 11:00 am, Wednesday, February 20, 2019, at St. John Vianney Catholic Church, 539 La Pasada Blvd., Goodyear AZ 85338.  Inurnment will be at 10:00 am, Tuesday, February 26, 2019, at Holy Cross Cemetery, 9925 W. Thomas Road, Avondale, AZ 85392.  Condolences for the family may be left at www.ThompsonFuneralChapel.com.

Audrey Faye Crenshaw

Audrey Faye Crenshaw, age 68 of Laveen, AZ died February 6, 2019, in Tempe, AZ.  She was born October 13, 1950, in Oakland, CA to Clifton Warren Ennis, Sr. and Ola Mae Whyche Ennis.  Audrey was a very adventurous soul who loved to read, travel and spend time with family and friends.  After approximately 45 years in the banking industry, Audrey retired happily to enjoy more relaxation and travel.  She is survived by her husband, Jesse Crenshaw; daughters, Kinderlyn Pettet and her husband Job, Renee Dismuk, and Nicole Crenshaw; sons, Joe Bertrand, Jay Bertrand, and Brandon Crenshaw; sister, Kathy Ulmer; brother, Clifton Ennis and his wife Monica, Glenn Ennis and his wife Gwen; and nine grandchildren, Christopher, Andrew, Joi, Trevor, Kamryn, Joe-Joe, Jayden, Malia, and Jesse.  She was preceded in death by her father and mother, sister Earlene, and a host of other close relatives.

A memorial service will be held at 10:00 am, Saturday, February 16, 2019, at Thompson Funeral Chapel, 926 S. Litchfield Road, Goodyear, AZ  85338.  

Russell Thomas Galewski

Russell Thomas Galewski of Goodyear, AZ left us and went to heaven February 8, 2019.

A Wisconsin native, Russ was born in Milwaukee, WI to Joseph and Lucille (Pietrzak) Galewski September 2, 1943. Russ and his wife of 55 years, Diane (Wichman) raised their three children in Franklin, WI. Russ was a Eucharistic Minister, Premarital Counselor with Diane, and served on the Finance Committee, Education Committee and Parish Council at St. Mary’s Parish and School of Hales Corners, WI.  The couple moved to the PebbleCreek community in Goodyear in 1998 where Russ finished his 30-year career with Metal Improvement Company, as a Senior Vice President of North American Operations, Shot Peening Division in 2007.  Once retirement began Russ devoted his time to traveling the world with Diane.  Together they visited six continents, over an 11year span.  When not discovering the culture, history, art, and cuisine of the world Russ was passionate about golf and serving his community.  He belonged to the PebbleCreek Sandbaggers where he developed deeply cherished friendships on and off the course.  Russ served the PebbleCreek community in a variety of ways in the Sandbaggers group, led various community committees and task force projects and most recently on the HOA Board of Directors.  His singular goal in each project was to keep the best interests of the PebbleCreek Community at heart.  Russ received the Volunteer of the Year Award in 2016.

Russ was a life-long learner, an avid reader, a mentor to many in business and in life.  He was a loving husband, father and grandfather.  He led his family in a way that showed the necessity of faith in God, the value of hard work, the honor of service to the community, and the benefits of laughter.  Lots of laughter.

Russ is survived by his wife Diane (Wichman), son Christopher (Tracy), daughter Mary (David) Goudie, son Matthew (Christina). Grandchildren, Crystal and Amanda Galewski, Matthew and Audrey Goudie, Isabella Galewski and step-grandchildren, Morgan, Tanner, Payton, and Carter Wolf, brother Gerald (Margaret), cousins, nieces, nephews and countless others whose lives he touched.

A Celebration of Life Mass will be held at St. Thomas Aquinas Church in Avondale at 10:30 am on March 8, 2019.  Reception and light lunch to follow at Tuscany Falls Chianti Room in PebbleCreek. All are welcome to attend.

If you wish, in lieu of flowers please make a donation to Hospice of the Valley or St. Vincent de Paul c/o St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church.

Marlene Werner

Marlene Werner, age 79 of Peoria, AZ died February 8, 2019, in Glendale, AZ.  She was born October 6, 1939, in Chicago, IL to Fritz and Irma Peterson.  Marlene is survived by her son, Scott Werner and his wife Varaporn Werner and one grandchild, Leilani Werner.  She was preceded in death by her husband of 50 years, Richard Werner.  The family suggests that donations be made to Stand Up to Cancer.

Lawrence Anthony Gebera

Lawrence Anthony Gebera, age 74 of Quartzsite, AZ died January 23, 2019 in Goodyear, AZ.  He was born January 2, 1945 in Hartford CT.  He attended St. Francis of Assisi Catholic school in Tonawanda and graduated from Tonawanda High School.  Lawrence lived a life that was full of adventure.  He was featured in the Tonawanda News for riding his bicycle from Detroit to Tonawanda, NY and also for fending off an attacker when he was a cab driver in Buffalo, NY.  He was an avid motorcycle enthusiast and met many friends as he traveled the country on his Kawasaki motorcycle and in his RV.  He was a member of the IUPAT Painters Local 43 Union and worked in Buffalo, NY; Los Angeles, CA; Henderson, NV; and Phoenix, AZ.  Additionally, he worked for Anheuser Busch.  In the last 10 years Lawrence owned a business repairing “Day Night Shades” for RVs.  He was known to use factory parts and do the job right.  He met many people who affectionately called him “Day Night Shades Larry.”

Lawrence was very tech savvy enjoying electronics, toys, telescopes, and movies.  He was fond of flea markets and bargain hunting.  He enjoyed ham radio and had trucker friends throughout the United States.  Though he was reserved, once he became your friend he was very loyal.  Kind hearted and empathetic, he had an innate sense of fairness and believed that the helpless should be helped.  He was a gun enthusiast and an avid outdoorsman.  He enjoyed hunting and fishing, but only for the purposes of obtaining food.  He was a lover of the furred and feathered and often took in injured animals to nurse back to health.  He was very good to children and animals and they returned the love he had from them.

Lawrence is survived by his son, David Gebera and his wife Wendy of Milwaukee, WI; daughter, Christine Gebera and her husband Dennis Kessinger of North Tonawanda, NY; fur children Penny and Mindy; sister, Patricia Kick of Lockport; brother, John Gebera; and uncle William Gebera of Amherst, NY; three grandchildren, Andrea Rosenburg of Rapid City, SD, Mathew Gebera of North Tonawanda, NY and Tylene Slenorl of Milwaukee, WI and many friends that he met in his travels.  He was preceded in death by his father Nicholas Gebera, mother Luise Roth, brothers Micheal Gebera and Nicholas Gebera, Jr., uncle Edward Gebera and Aunt Mary Gibson.

Lawrence Anthony Gebera, age 74 of Quartzsite, AZ died January 23, 2019 in Goodyear, AZ.  He was born January 2, 1945 in Hartford CT.  He attended St. Francis of Assisi Catholic school in Tonawanda and graduated from Tonawanda High School.  Lawrence lived a life that was full of adventure.  He was featured in the Tonawanda News for riding his bicycle from Detroit to Tonawanda, NY and also for fending off an attacker when he was a cab driver in Buffalo, NY.  He was an avid motorcycle enthusiast and met many friends as he traveled the country on his Kawasaki motorcycle and in his RV.  He was a member of the IUPAT Painters Local 43 Union and worked in Buffalo, NY; Los Angeles, CA; Henderson, NV; and Phoenix, AZ.  Additionally, he worked for Anheuser Busch.  In the last 10 years Lawrence owned a business repairing “Day Night Shades” for RVs.  He was known to use factory parts and do the job right.  He met many people who affectionately called him “Day Night Shades Larry.”

Lawrence was very tech savvy enjoying electronics, toys, telescopes, and movies.  He was fond of flea markets and bargain hunting.  He enjoyed ham radio and had trucker friends throughout the United States.  Though he was reserved, once he became your friend he was very loyal.  Kind hearted and empathetic, he had an innate sense of fairness and believed that the helpless should be helped.  He was a gun enthusiast and an avid outdoorsman.  He enjoyed hunting and fishing, but only for the purposes of obtaining food.  He was a lover of the furred and feathered and often took in injured animals to nurse back to health.  He was very good to children and animals and they returned the love he had from them.

Lawrence is survived by his son, David Gebera and his wife Wendy of Milwaukee, WI; daughter, Christine Gebera and her husband Dennis Kessinger of North Tonawanda, NY; fur children Penny and Mindy; sister, Patricia Kick of Lockport; brother, John Gebera; and uncle William Gebera of Amherst, NY; three grandchildren, Andrea Rosenburg of Rapid City, SD, Mathew Gebera of North Tonawanda, NY and Tylene Flenorl of Milwaukee, WI and many friends that he met in his travels.  He was preceded in death by his father Nicholas Gebera, mother Luise Roth, brothers Micheal Gebera and Nicholas Gebera, Jr., uncle Edward Gebera and Aunt Mary Gibson.

A mass for Lawrence will be held Friday, April 5th at 10 am at St. Francis of Assisi Church; 73 Adam St., Tonawanda, New York 14150.  Non Catholics and Catholics not feeling comfortable with receiving communion may signify this by placing their hand over their heart to receive a blessing from the priest or remaining seated during communion.  In Lieu of flowers please send donations to Exotic Heritage Cat Association of America no-kill Shelter; 860 Quail Crest Rd.; Kingman AZ 86409.   In lieu of flowers please send donations to Exotic Heritage Cat Association of America no-kill Shelter; 860 Quail Crest Rd.; Kingman AZ 86409.

Richard Stewart

Richard Stewart, age 83 of Goodyear, AZ died February 7, 2019.  He was born September 22, 1935, in Charleston, WV.  Richard had a tough upbringing in West Virginia, but he made it out and moved to Michigan.  He graduated from Ford Motor Company vocational school, an education that was interrupted by being drafted into the US Air Force and serving in Chateauroux, France as a Radar Technician.  While there, he raced Opal GT’s and played football against NATO teams across Europe.  After four years in France, he returned to finish school and started working for Ford Motor Company in Detroit on the assembly line.  He quickly realized this was not for him and changed over to the engineering department at General Motor Fisher Body in Detroit and had a successful 33-year career.

During his GM career, he pioneered the development of the seat belt that has saved countless lives.  Dick was recognized by GM as their seatbelt subject matter expert and transitioned into becoming an expert witness.  He worked many high-profile cases that saved GM millions of dollars in false claims.  After his career at GM, he became a freelance subject matter expert and helped other car companies like Ford and Toyota.

During his career, he married Kay and they raised four children.  When he finally retired, he traveled the US for several years in a motor home, finally settling in Phoenix, AZ.   Richard was always looking for ways to keep active, so he volunteered for a variety of church organizations in the area and became a Chaplain for the Avondale Police Department.  The highlight of his life was getting Gracie, a 120-pound bull retriever and training her to be a service dog.  Together they performed at many events and won many awards for service with the Police Department and the community.

Richard is survived by his daughters, Kim Soave and Patricia Rowden; sons, Michael Stewart and Richard Stewart Jr.; 10 Grandchildren; and four Great-Grandchildren.   A memorial service will be held at 12:30 pm, Friday, February 22, 2019, at The Church at Litchfield Park, 300 N Old Litchfield Rd, Litchfield Park, AZ 85340.  In lieu of flowers, the family suggests that you donate to the Phoenix 100 Club or The Church at Litchfield Park.

Richard Eliot Scott

Richard Eliot Scott, 75, left this earth on January 14, 2019, in Goodyear, AZ.  He was born on August 21, 1943, in New Jersey and spent his childhood in Scotch Plains, NJ.  Richard was a proud veteran of the United States Marine Corp. and served honorably in the early 1960s.  He was deployed to Cuban waters during the Missile Crisis.  He spent most of his professional career in construction management and traveled extensively to many countries through his association with several international builders.

Richard had a great love for music and particularly blues and jazz.  In addition to collecting music, he also played the guitar.  He was a walking encyclopedia of artists recorded during the 1950s and 1960s.  He was a dog lover who spoke to every dog he saw and they all loved him back.  Richard never met a stranger and loved spending time with his family and friends.

Richard is survived by his wife, Victoria Scott, of Goodyear, his son Austin Scott of Boston, MA, his daughter Adriana Scott of Avondale, his step-son John Lewis of Goodyear and step-daughter Chelsea Lewis of Denver, CO, and three nephews.  He was preceded in death by his parents Robert E. and Ruth E. Scott, his brother Robert E. Scott, Jr., his brother Randolph E. Scott, and his daughter Renee Algernon.

Richard will be fondly remembered by family and friends for his gentle kindness and uplifting spirit.  Semper Fi.  A memorial service will be held at 1:00 pm, Saturday, February 16, 2019, at Thompson Funeral Chapel, 926 S. Litchfield Road, Goodyear, AZ  85338.

Victoria R. Gutierrez

Victoria R. Gutierrez, age 74 of Avondale, AZ died January 30, 2019.  She was born November 17, 1944, in San Angelo, TX to Julio and Maria Rodriguez.  She is survived by her husband, Manuel Gutierrez; daughter, Marcella Gutierrez; sons, Abie Ortiz, Alcario Ortiz, Benny Ortiz; Dolores Gutierrez, and Greg Gutierrez; sister, Maria Saldana; brothers, Fidel Rodriguez and Rosendo Rodriguez; 21 grandchildren, and 24 great-grandchildren.  A visitation will be held at 10:30 am with a rosary at 12:00 pm followed by a funeral service on Friday, February 8, 2019, at Thompson Funeral Chapel, 926 S. Litchfield Road, Goodyear, AZ  85338.  The funeral cortege will follow in procession to Holy Cross Cemetery where burial will take place. 

Mary L. “Mollie” McErlean

Mary L. “Mollie” McErlean, age 72 of Goodyear, AZ died February 4, 2019, in Glendale, AZ.  She was born March 25, 1946, in Evergreen Park, IL to Charles and Theodora McErlean.  Mary earned her Bachelor of Arts degree at Mundelein College in Chicago and her MBA at Lewis University in Romeoville, IL.  She retired as Director of Human Resources at Columbia La Grange Memorial Hospital in La Grange, IL.  She moved from Oak Brook, IL to PebbleCreek in Goodyear, AZ in 2002.  She was a member of St. John Vianney Parish and was active in Kare Bears and the Pet Companions, Bocce, Computer and Singles Clubs.

Mary is survived by her brothers, Charles, F. McErlean, Jr., and Robert E. McErlean; nieces and nephews, James P. McErlean, Laura J. Enright, Kelly L. Hunt, Amy J. Szeszol, and Brian E. McErlean.  She was preceded in death by her parents, Charles and Theodora.

A visitation will be held at 3:00 pm with a rosary at 4:00 pm, Sunday, February 10, 2019, at Thompson Funeral Chapel, 926 S. Litchfield Road, Goodyear, AZ.  A funeral mass will be at 10:00 am, Monday, February 11, 2019, at St. John Vianney Catholic Church, 539 La Pasada Blvd. , Goodyear AZ 85338.  Burial will be at Queen of Heaven Cemetery, Chicago, IL.

Esther S. Gandara

Esther S. Gandara, age 88 of Glendale, AZ died February 3, 2019, in Buckeye, AZ.  She was born August 19, 1930, in Omaha, NE to Guadalupe Sousa and Pabla Hernandez.  She is survived by her husband, Rodolfo Gandara; daughters, Sandra J. Fuentes, Rita A Balian, Caroline Madden; sons, Gilbert A. Gandara, and Daniel J. Gandara; sister, Angelina Castro; brothers, Joe Louis Sousa and John Leonard Sousa; 14 grandchildren; 23 great-grandchildren; and two great-great-grandchildren.  She was preceded in death by her son, Rodolfo Gandara, Jr.

A visitation will be held at 10:00 am followed by a funeral service at 11:00 am, Thursday, February 7, 2019, at Thompson Funeral Chapel, 926 S Litchfield Road, Goodyear, AZ  85338.  The funeral cortege will follow in procession to West Resthaven Cemetery, 6450 W Northern Ave, Glendale, AZ 85301.

Margaret Helen Moore

Margaret Helen Moore, age 90 of Litchfield Park, AZ died January 21, 2019, in Litchfield Park, AZ.  She was born May 30, 1928, in McKeesport, PA, a sister to a twin brother Bob.  She met her husband, Glenn E. Moore in Clairton, PA.  Together, they built their first house by hand.  Marge and Glenn were very much in love, they lived for each other.  Glenn had a business and Marge became his office manager, but shopping, lunch dates, and card games often took precedence over work.  They loved to travel and went all around the world.  Hawaii was their favorite destination.

Marge is survived by her daughters, Patricia A. Wilson (Robert) and Beverly J. Mitchell (Ed); son, Jeffrey E. Moore (Karen); two grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.  She was preceded in death by her husband, Glenn E. Moore.  A memorial service will be held at 2:00 pm, Saturday, February 23, 2019, at La Loma Care Center, 14260 S. Denny Blvd, Litchfield Park, AZ  85340.  The family suggests that donations be made to Americare Hospice.

Charles Thomas Pearson

Charles Thomas Pearson, age 36, of Phoenix, AZ died January 25, 2019, in Midland, TX.  He was born April 26, 1982, in Phoenix, AZ.  Charles truly was an amazing man, wonderful husband, and the best daddy. He had the kindest soul, so full of love, and completely selfless. He was the kind of person that you could count on day or night and always put others needs before his own. He had a lively sense of humor and loved to make others laugh or smile, especially when they needed it most. He loved being outdoors and going on an adventure whether it be skydiving, tricks on his motorcycle in earlier years, camping, hiking, or going mud bogging and 4x4ing in his project truck. He loved to teach his boys new things like letting them “help” work on his old pickup or teaching them how to build things. But most of all, he loved being with his family and friends, they were the center of his life and what made his heart happy.

Charles is survived by his wife Amanda and their two young boys, Liam and Carter; father, Carlie; mom, Alma; his brothers and sisters; and countless others whose lives he has touched.  He was preceded in death by his mother, Mickelena.

A funeral service will be held at 4:00 pm, Tuesday, February 5, 2019, at Thompson Funeral Chapel, 926 S. Litchfield Road, Goodyear, AZ  85338. 

Carmen Gonzalez

Carmen Gonzalez, age 86 died January 26, 2019, in Phoenix, AZ.  She was born November 30, 1932, in Cuquio, Mexico to Jesus Perez Torres and Maria Rodriguez Molina, the oldest of five children.  A faithful and virtuous woman, Carmen depended on the Lord, prayer and her faith in her daily life.  She worked as a seamstress and enjoyed sewing, but her heart and devotion was for her family.  She raised 8 children and taught them to work hard for the best that life could bring you.  Always loving and sweet, she was feisty and direct in her guidance of her children. Whether it was learning good manners, working to stay healthy, or simply standing up straight,  they could count on her to direct them in the proper way.  She gave her heart to her children, and as her family grew, to their spouses, her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Carmen was beautiful inside and out.  Though her life was challenging, she lived a dignified life, ever so classy with her sunglasses on!  She was a master gardener.   She could grow any plant from just a small start, even planting bits of sod that she had transported from California until they grew into a beautiful lawn.  She especially loved roses and carnations, and they graced her garden.  Her gardening skills were only matched by her cooking skills.  She was an adventurous cook and loved to try dishes from various countries.  She had the talent of taking any dish that she tried and perfecting it.

Humble and loving, Carmen often left this blessing with her family when they left.  “El Señor te bendiga y te guarde, Te muestre su rostro y tenga piedad de ti, Te dirija su mirada y te dé la paz, El Señor te bendiga.”

Carmen is survived by her daughters, Irma Alcorcha, Rosalie Baldonado, Carmina Arevalo; sons, Armando Gonzalez, Ralph Gonzalez, David Gonzalez, Sam Gonzalez, Jr.; and Danny Gonzalez; sister Velia Castillo; brother, Ezequel Mendoza-Rodriguez; 20 grandchildren; and 14 great-grandchildren.  She was  preceded in death by her husband, Samuel Gonzalez; and her parents Jesus Perez Torres and Maria Rodriguez Molina.

A memorial mass will be held at 11:00 am, Monday, February 4, 2019 at St. John Vianney, 539 La Pasada Blvd. , Goodyear AZ 85338.

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