Gerald “Jerry” Pechtel, 86, passed away on October 21, 2018

Gerald “Jerry” Pechtel, 86, of St. Joseph went to be with his lord on Sunday, October 21, 2018, at Pine Ridge Nursing Home.

Friends may visit from 5:00 – 8:00 Wednesday, October 24, 2018, at Starks & Menchinger Chapel, 2650 Niles Road.  A Celebration of Life Services will be held at 11:00 AM Thursday, October 25, 2018, at Trinity Lutheran Church in St. Joseph; officiated by Rev Michael Roth followed by burial at Riverview Cemetery with Military Rites conducted by North Berrien Military Rites Team. Memorials may be made to Trinity Lutheran Church.   Friends wishing to leave a condolence may do so at

Jerry was born on November 29, 1931 in St. Joseph to Michael & Natalie (Meier) Pechtel.

He graduated from St. Joseph High School in 1949 and during those years he cruised the streets of St. Joseph.  He served our country in the US Navy from 1951 to 1955.  After returning, he married Donna Standley on September 15, 1956 at Salem Lutheran Church in Coloma. They spent their honeymoon in Wisconsin Dells. He worked at Michigan Fruit Canners before moving to Rochester, New York in 1989 leading to his retirement in 1994 from Curtis Burns, Inc. and moved back to St. Joseph.

He enjoyed spending time with his grandchildren, watching their sporting events, cheering on his beloved Detroit Tigers, Fly-tying, bowling, baseball, coaching his kids growing up, bartending, loved playing cards and taking care of all of his dogs over the years; and he especially loved his years of supporting Donna and all of her craft Shows.

Jerry took great pride in volunteering at the hospital, being a part of the Starks Funeral Home staff and a lifetime member of Trinity Lutheran Church.

He is survived by his wife Donna of 62 years, three daughters Linda Mashak (Curt Simmons), Darla (Terry) Steinert, Sheryl (Doug) Clem and son Michael (Julia) Pechtel. He leaves behind ten loving grandchildren, T.J., Lauren, McKenzie, Rachel, Colin, Matthew, Hannah, Logan, Dylan and Amber along with two sisters Flora Hauch and Ethel Wheeler.

Jerry was preceded in death by his parents, sisters Alvina and Donna and brother Donald.

Jerry was the perfect gentleman.  He would always send his beloved wife flowers on several special occasion- he never missed a date.  And his whole life, he was known for opening doors, shaking hands and being there to help anyone in need.   Even in his wheelchair at Pine Ridge, he insisted on opening doors and greeted others with a soft smile and handshake.  Every patient knew him as the gentle and kind man that he was.  Thank you, Pine Ridge, for caring for him and allowing him to feel needed and give back to others in his finals stage of life.  Jerry this world is a better place because of you and you will be greatly missed.  Your family and friends wish you peace and send our love to you up above!

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