Gretchen was born August 16, 1946 to Gerald Mark and Rose Lilian Cook, and died on May 18, 2022 with her family by her side.
Gretchen grew up in Taylor, Michigan, and graduated from Marywood Academy in 1964. Later that year, she returned to Marywood to enter the Sisters of St. Dominic. After leaving, she met her future husband, Ron, on a blind date. They married on June 20, 1969. They were blessed with one daughter, Ronnie.
Gretchen was a stay-at-home Mom and began caring for children while their parents worked. After 36 years and over 100 children, she retired. She was active in the faith community at Trinity UMC, Swanton, serving on several boards and in the United Methodist Women, Prayer Shawl Ministry, Community Dinner, and teaching Sunday School and Junior Church.
Gretchen was predeceased by her parents, her husband Ron, and her sister Susan Hawkinson. She is survived by her daughter Ronnie (Fred) Bower and their son Josh; sisters Kit (Tim) Hollis, Jill (Ted) Gjertson, Mary (Bill) Lunsford, Jackie (Jim) Powers, and brother Joel (Connie) Cook and brother-in-law Rick Hawkinson. She is also survived by many nieces and nephews and special friends who touched her life and blessed her in ways they will never know.
Visitation will be held Tuesday, July 19th from 10 am to 11 am at Trinity United Methodist Church, where a memorial service will begin at 11:00 a.m.. To keep Gretchen's immunocompromised friends and family safe, facial masks will be required. A luncheon will immediately follow the service.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Trinity UMC, 210 N. Main St., Swanton, OH 43558. Donations will be shared between Junior Church and Prayer Shawl Ministry.