Good Shepherd Presbyterian Church

St. George, UT

 

GSPC Says Goodbye to Nancy Gearhart

We are saddened by the news of the death of Deacon Nancy Gearhart.

Nancy Ruth Gearhart
March 19, 1941 - January 10, 2019

Our much-loved wife, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother Nancy Ruth Gearhart died on January 10, 2019, at the age of 77. She was born in Redding, California, on March 19, 1941, and is the daughter of Karl Ford Kness and Ella Mae Keihl Kness. She married Larry Gearhart on March 25, 1967, in her parents' home in Corte Madera, California. Nancy wrote the majority of this text years ago, so the following is a retelling of her life in her words.

While growing up on a seven-acre fruit ranch near Clear Lake in California, she learned to love the country; it was an idyllic childhood. She graduated from Balboa High School in San Francisco. She later went to keypunch school to be able to support herself. The skill came in very handy; she worked as a keypunch operator for ten years in San Francisco and Eureka, California.

During her life, Nancy lived in Kelseyville, California; San Francisco; Eureka; San Bernardino, California; Soulsbyville, California, (which she considered to be heaven); Joseph, Utah; Hanksville, Utah; American Falls, Idaho; Hanksville (again!); St. George, Utah; and Santa Clara, Utah.

In American Falls, Nancy worked for the Power County Senior Citizens as a head cook for the Senior Center. She also worked part-time for a florist and a clothing store. She volunteered as an EMT in Hanksville and American Falls, and helped out at the Intermountain Cancer Center and Hospice in St. George. She also volunteered with her sons' schools and classes. Nancy was gentle, kind, and quietly independent. She fought thyroid cancer twice and ultimately conquered it.

When she and Larry moved to Santa Clara in 1987, they joined the Good Shepherd Presbyterian Church as it was first established in the area. They were among the original 113 charter members. Nancy worked as a secretary in the church for five years and became a deacon in the church in 1997.

Nancy was very artistic and creative. Her hobbies and interests included hand-painting Christmas villages, making pottery, drawing, watercolor painting, raising ducks, camping, watching birds, traveling, decorating her house in her mixed-up eclectic style, making crafts, and sewing until her eyes betrayed her. She collected Christmas ornaments, dolls, old dishes and silver, glass bells, and other antiques. With a green thumb, she played Mrs. Mother Earth after she quit working full time, and was always outside gardening, as well as growing orchids and other potted plants.

One of her great joys was spending time with family, especially her husband Larry. She loved cookout breakfasts in the backyard, family dinners, and playing card games. She enjoyed watching her grandkids play in the yard, as well as their piano recitals, school programs, and award ceremonies. It was a great pleasure for her to watch her husband and children become successful.

Nancy is survived by her husband Larry, sons Randy (Kathy) of Copper Center, Alaska; Dan (Tiffany) of St. George; Russell (Ingrid) of St. George; brother Rocky (Lisa) Kness of Klawock, Alaska; and her grandchildren Kristina (Brian), Alex (Samantha), Theresa (Charlie), Asia (Tommy), Talia, Uintah, Sierra, and six great-grandchildren.

The family would like to extend a warm thank you to Mary Helen Stricklin of the palliative care department at Dixie Regional Medical Center for all her help and guidance.

Relatives and friends are invited to a memorial service and luncheon on Saturday, February 9, 2019, at 11:00 am at the Good Shepherd Presbyterian Church, 611 North 2450 East in St. George. In lieu of flowers, please donate to the Community Soup Kitchen of St. George.