Lorraine Helene Gerecke, an active member of the Sag Harbor American Legion Auxiliary, died on April 4 at Southampton Hospital following a lengthy illness. She was 87 years old.
Ms. Gerecke began life on Feb. 16, 1925, in Southampton, the oldest child of George Edwards and Helen “Nellie” McDonough Edwards of Sag Harbor. After graduating as salutatorian of Pierson High School’s class of 1942, Ms. Gerecke went on to the Southampton Hospital School of Nursing, graduating as a registered nurse in 1945.
She obtained a position at Southampton Hospital as an operating room nurse, and over the next three years while she worked there, she was the recipient of the Parrish Memorial Award for bedside nursing.
On Aug. 22, 1948, she married Thomas Frank Gerecke, also of Sag Harbor. Mr. Gerecke’s career with the Navy took the couple on a 17-year trip around the country, while the couple spent time in South Carolina, California, Virginia, Massachusetts, and Washington, D.C. When Mr. Gerecke retired, the couple spent the next 18 years in Hauppauge before returning to Sag Harbor in 1984.
Ms. Gerecke stayed active in Sag Harbor, as a member of the Columbiettes and Home Extension in addition to her work with the American Legion Auxiliary. According to her family, she loved to cook, sew, and garden, and was an accomplished organ player. Mr. Gerecke predeceased her in 1993.
Three sons — Thomas F. Gerecke Jr. of Lynn, Mass., Mark R. Gerecke of Orlando, Fla., and Paul E. Gerecke of Sag Harbor — along with two cousins who still reside in Sag Harbor, survive Ms. Gerecke. A brother, George Edwards of Amagansett, predeceased her in 1978.
A Mass celebrating her life was said on Tuesday at St. Andrew’s Church, followed by burial in the church cemetery. The family has suggested memorial contributions to Cormaria, P.O. Box 1993, Sag Harbor 11963, to the Alzheimer’s Association, or to a charity of choice.