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Obituaries Published in Feb. 15 California Democrat

Obituaries Published in Feb. 15 California Democrat

February 14th, 2012 by Democrat Staff in News


Charles Perry Cook, 81, of California, passed away on Thursday, February 9, 2012, at the Moniteau County Care Center.

He was born on November 21, 1930, in Sandy Hook, the son of Hugh Elmer and Vera May (Perry) Cook, both of which preceded him in death. He was united in marriage on October 1, 1952, in Clarksburg, to Wanda E. (Elliott) Cook, who survives of the home.

He was a Veteran of the United States Marine Corp serving from 1951 to 1954. He was a member of the Mount Pleasant Baptist Church and the Teamsters Union. Charles had worked at Middle West Freightways for 30 years as a truck driver.

He is survived by: two sons, Paul Cook and his wife, Donna, California; and Chuck and his wife Molly, Clarksburg; one daughter, Wanda Elane Gordon, Peculiar; two brothers, Hugh Allen Cook and Kenny Cook; and Louise Wyckoff, Jamestown; five grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren. He is preceded in death by his son-in-law, Steve Gordon, three brothers, and three sisters.

Funeral services were held at 11:00 a.m., on Monday, February 13, 2012, at the Bowlin-Cantriel Funeral Services, California, with Jack Bowlin officiating. Burial was at Mount Pleasant Cemetery, north of California.

Memorials are suggested of the donor's choice, c/o Bowlin-Cantriel Funeral Services, 100 S. Oak, California, MO 65018.

Arrangements were under the direction of Bowlin-Cantriel Funeral Services, California, Mo.


Hubert (Emil) Gerke, 82, of Tipton, passed away Sunday, February 12, 2012 at Tipton Oak Manor.

He was born November 2, 1929, near Otterville, the youngest of 12 children, to Joseph and Emma Hainen Gerke. He was married September 21, 1954 in Tipton, to Evelyn Koechner, who survives of the home.

He graduated from Smithton High School. He was the second employee hired at Fischer Mfg. in 1949 and worked there until 1975. He owned Emil's Station and Café from 1975 to 1981. He worked for Fasco Inc. in Eldon and Tipton, from which he retired. He was a school crossing guard. He was in charge of the Knights of Columbus Bingo stand for 20 years. He was a member of the St. Andrew's Catholic Church and a lifetime member of the Knights of Columbus.

Survivors include his wife of the home, two daughters-Darlene (Ronnie) Long and Anita (Donnie) Bracht of Tipton; two sons-Bruce (Becky) Gerke of Houstonia, and Wayne Gerke of Denver; 10 grandchildren - Jennifer Schmidt, Amanda Long, Aaron Long, Amy Griffin, Donna Bracht, Don Bracht, Jr., Chris Bracht, Terry Gerke, Anne Marie Gerke, Noah Gerke and seven great-grandchildren; one sister-Geneva Fischer of California. He was preceded in death by seven brothers and three sisters.

Funeral services for Mr. Gerke will be Wednesday, February 15, 2012 at St. Andrew's Catholic Church at 10:00 a.m. Burial in the St. Andrew's Cemetery.

Memorials to the St. Andrew's Church, City Park, or Preferred Hospice.


Leon G. Vanderfeltz, passed away suddenly with family by his side on Monday, February 6, 2012.

He was born December 1, 1932, in Jefferson City, Missouri, the son of the late G.G. and Cecilia Franken Vanderfeltz. On December 1, 1951, he was united in marriage in Jefferson City to Rita Mae DeBroeck, who proceeded him in death on May 24, 2008.

Leon attended St. Peter's High School where he was a 1950 graduate. Leon grew up on the family dairy farm helping his father with the herd and farming operations. He was part owner and store manager of DeBroeck's Market from 1956 to 1974. In 1969, he moved to the farm and in 1974, became a full-time dairy farmer.

He was a charter member, lifetime member and past president of the Helias Athletic Booster Club. He was also a member of the Helias Band Booster Club. Leon served as a communion minister, was a member of the Knights of Columbus - Helias Council 1054 and was a 4th degree Knight with the Dan C. Coppin Council. He was a member of the Jefferson City Chamber of Commerce and Mid-American Dairy Association. He was also a member of the Dairy Herd Improvement and the Missouri State Holstein Association where he served as past president of both.

Leon was honored as an affiliated member of the Brothers of the Christian Schools. The honor is given to those who show outstanding religious and community concern, especially toward young people. He was a 2008 inductee of the Helias Hall of Fame. In 1992, Leon was honored with the Dairy Leadership Award.

Leon was known as Helias #1 Cheerleader, supporting and cheering the Helias Crusaders at all sports both home and away. Everyone will remember him for his famous Helias Cheer that starts with "Give Me An H". He loved spending time with his "girlfriend" Rita Mae and being surrounded by his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren during the weekends and holidays. He was an avid antique tractor collector, no matter what color they were.

He is survived by five sons: Donald Vanderfeltz, wife Jean of California, Missouri, Mark Vanderfeltz, wife Mary Beth of Jefferson City, Daniel Vanderfeltz, wife Joan of Jefferson City, Bill Vanderfeltz, wife Glenda of Jefferson City, and Joseph Vanderfeltz, wife Melinda of Lawton, Pennsylvania; three daughters: Ann Mulholland, husband Eddie of Jefferson City, Joan Plassmeyer, husband Jeff of Freeburg, Mary Padgett, husband Kent of Jefferson City; two brothers: Robert Vanderfeltz of Jefferson City and David Vanderfeltz of Westphalia; three sisters: Madeline Sutherlin of Lee's Summit, Rita Puckett of Jefferson City and Geraldine Vanderfeltz of Westphalia; his uncle: Virgil Vanderfeltz of the home; 22 grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren. Along with his wife Rita Mae, Leon was preceded in death by one brother: John Vanderfeltz.

Mass of Christian Burial was held at 1:00 p.m. Saturday, February 11, 2012, at Helias Catholic High School, Rackers Fieldhouse. Interment followed in Resurrection Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, expressions of sympathy may be made to The Helias Science Center or the Immaculate Conception Endowment Fund.

Arrangements were under the direction of HOUSER-MILLARD Funeral Directors, 2613 West Main Street; (573) 636-3838. Condolences may be left for the family online at