The Rev. Gretchen Good Pankratz, 76, an ordained Episcopal Deacon and a member of the Third Order of the Society of St. Francis, passed away on Tuesday, February 25, 2014, after a short illness. She was born on June 21, 1937 in Liberal, Kansas, the first child of the late Dr. Earl Hey Good and the late Hortense Heaton Good.
As a child, she loved riding her pony on her parents’ ranch and spending summers at the Good Time cabin in Cuchara, Colorado. During High School, she was a lifeguard at the Liberal city park.
She was a graduate of Liberal High School, Cottey College, Nevada, Missouri, and the University of Kansas School of Medicine, Manhattan, KS. She practiced as a medical technician until she began raising her four children.
Fulfilling her call to ministry, she lived in San Francisco, California as a novice in the First Order and received into the Third Order of the Society of Saint Francis. She was ordained to the Deaconate while there. In San Francisco, she served the AIDS population and learned sign language for ministry with the deaf community.
She served in St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church in Liberal, St. Thomas’ in Garden City, KS, and St. Paul’s in Goodland, KS. Beyond the churches’ doors, Gretchen reflected Christ’s love by continuing to help others in many ways. She continued her work with AIDS patients through WEKARE (Western Kansas AIDS Resource and Education), and people who are deaf. She worked with refugees who were resettling in our country, people in hospice, and many others known only by the persons she helped and comforted.
Gretchen was an excellent seamstress sewing many different items over the years including the costumes for children’s school plays, and the Renaissance Chorale group, Principle Voices she sang with in Garden City, KS. Family and friends enjoyed receiving her handmade gifts throughout the years.
She is survived by two daughters, Allison (Pritts), her husband Marvin, and two grandchildren Alyssa and Kevin, in Trumansburg, New York; Katrina (Haines), her husband Terry, and grandson Lance, in Charlotte, Michigan; and a son, Andrew Pankratz in Okemos, Michigan. She is survived also by her brother Gary and his wife Patricia, in Naples, Florida; her former husband Stuart Pankratz, in Lansing, Michigan; and niece Julie Pittman Toon, nephew Jim Pittman, and brother-in-law Ed Pittman, with whom she spent much time during her years in Liberal; and other nieces, nephews, and cousins.
She was preceded in death by her son, Greg Pankratz, and her sister, Gloria Good Pittman.
• Memorial service will be 2 p.m., Saturday, April 5th held at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church 521 N. Sherman Liberal, KS. Burial of cremains will follow at Liberal Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to: Liberal Home Health & Hospice, 502 N Kansas Ave, Liberal, KS 67901; the Able Kids Foundation, 724 Whalers Way, Suite 101, Fort Collins, CO 80525, http://www.ablekids foundation.org/iamable.html), or the Alzheimer’s Association in care of Brenneman Funeral Home 1212 W. 2nd Liberal, KS 67901.
Condolences may be sent to the family at www.brenneman funeralhome.com