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Florence Gerken Obituary

Florence M. Gerken, 90 of Lake City, passed away Tuesday, Sept. 17, 2019, at the Mayo Clinic Health System - Lake City Care Center.
    Florence was born Nov. 14, 1928 to John and Anna (Laflin) Miller in Bear Valley in Chester Township. She attended Rural School District No. 13 in Bear Valley and graduated from Mazeppa High School in 1946. Florence married Vernon Gerken on Sept. 25, 1948 at St. John’s Lutheran Bear Valley Church. They farmed in West Albany Township, Wabasha County until 1972 when they moved to Lake City. In 1968 she started as a nurse’s aid at the Lake City Hospital and then attended Rochester Vocational School where she received her LPN degree in 1970. Florence worked at the Lake City Hospital until retiring in 1991. In retirement she worked at Fiesta Foods in the bakery and as a food demonstrator. She also worked as a public health nurse at Bluff View Elementary School in the cafeteria, until retiring in 2008. Florence was a member of the Bethany Lutheran Church and was a member of the Ladies Aid and Alter Guild. Florence taught Sunday school and Bible school. Her favorite hobbies were decorating cakes, crocheting, playing Scrabble and most recently bingo at the care center. Vernon passed away in 2009.
    Florence is survived by her daughter, Kathleen (Dwaine) Kamnetz of Chatfield; one son, Kenneth Gerken of Lake City; two grandchildren, Darin (Brooke Morgan) Kamnetz of Eden Prairie and Mary Beth (Tyler) Nelson of Chatfield; and two great-grandchildren, Charlotte and Clifton Nelson. She was preceded in death by her husband, Vernon; and a brother, Frank Miller.
    The memorial service will be on Wednesday, Sept. 25, at 11 a.m. at Bethany Lutheran Church in Lake City with Rev. Steven Frentz officiating. Burial will be in Lakewood Cemetery in Lake City. Visitation will be one hour prior to the service at the church.
    Funeral arrangements are by the Mahn Family Funeral Home, Anderson-Peterson Chapel in Lake City. Memorials are preferred to Bethany Lutheran Church. Online condolences may be placed at

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