Bernice Ann Gengenbach, of Eustis passed away Monday January 4, 2021 at Elwood Care Center at the age of 89. Bernice was born April 7, 1931 to Charles Clayton and Erna (Schreiber) Gates, in Columbus Nebraska.
Bernice attended Colfax County District 12 elementary school in Richland, NE, until the death of her father in 1942. She and her mother moved to Columbus, NE. and she continued her education there, graduating from Kramer High School in 1948. Following graduation she was employed at Consumers Public Power District in Columbus, until her marriage.
On June 21, 1953, she was united in marriage with Floyd Gengenbach at Trinity Lutheran Church in Columbus. They made their home on the family farm at Eustis, until moving into Eustis in 1982. Three children were born to this union, Michael, Marilyn and Marc.
Bernice taught 7th & 8th grade Sunday School at St. John’s Lutheran for many years, she served as their Church Choir Director for eleven years, and in 1977 became the Parish Secretary and served for 26 years. She was also involved in St. John’s Women of the ELCA, holding several offices in the organization. Bernice was a member of the Central District Council of the former ALC for two terms and during that time also was a member of the Lutheran Family Services Board. Bernice served as Treasurer of the Nebraska Syndical Women of the ELCA for two terms and served two terms as Conference Board Representative for the High Plains Conference. She was also a member of Mary Martha Bible Study. She and her Bible Study group started a yearly project of teaching 4th graders how to make lye soap for their Nebraska History lessons on the Gengenbach farm for several years.
Bernice also served her community in many ways including 4-H leader, Dawson County 4-H Café chairman, Dawson County Farm Bureau Board Member, and a long time volunteer at the Eustis Senior Center., and served as treasurer of the Eustis Community Chest.
Her favorite hobbies were cooking and baking for family, friends, functions, and gifting at the holidays. To her great grandchildren she was know as Pretzel Grandma. Other hobbies included sewing, flower gardening, crocheting, knitting, embroidery, and spent many hours quilting at the Sr. Center or her home were friends would come to quilt and visit.
Bernice is survived by her children, Michael and wife Peggy of Eustis, NE, Marilyn and husband Raymond Warren of Roseburg, OR and Marc and wife Karen of Blair, NE; grandchildren: Megan and husband Rudy Gonzales of Fort Worth, Texas, Michelle and husband Matthew Paris of York, NE, Carissa and husband Leandro Castro of Omaha, NE, Heidi and husband USAF Jerod Hausmann of Bennington, NE, USAF Christopher Warren and wife Kelsea of Cameron, NC, and USAF Matthew Warren of Kunsan, Korea; great grandsons Xavier Paris, Noah and Barrett Hausman; great granddaughters Izabelle Paris, Lea and Olivia Castro, Charlotte Warren.
Bernice is preceded in death by her husband Floyd Gengenbach on July 20, 2020, her brother inlaw Walter in 2008 and his wife Mildred Gengenbach in 2006; her sister in-law Eileen Janssen in 2009 and her parents Charles in 1942 and Erna in 1976.
Memorials are suggested to St. John’s Lutheran Church Eustis, Trinity Lutheran Church Gothenburg or Eustis Senior Center. Online condolences may be shared at berrymanfuneralhome. com. Services were held Wednesday, January 13, 2021 at Trinity Lutheran Church in Gothenburg with Pastor Jeff Cottingham officiating. Burial will be at Eustis East Cemetery. Visitation was held Tuesday, January 12, at Berryman Funeral Home.