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Obituary: Drenkhahn, Harriette

Age 91

DRENKHAHN, Harriette Passed away from heart disease July 13. Her life was celebrated at a memorial service August 15 at Manito United Methodist Church in Spokane, WA. Harriette Constance Thompson was born October 27, 1921 in Pipestone, MN. Her family moved to Sioux Falls, SD, where they operated the Thompson Candy Company and were active in the Greek community and Calvary Episcopal Cathedral. Harriette began playing the violin when she was eight and played with orchestras at Augustana College, the University of South Dakota in Vermillion and South Dakota State in Brookings. She went to Nettleton Commercial College in Sioux Falls. During World War II, Harriette worked in the shipping office at Morrell’s meat packing plant in Sioux Falls, shipping meat to soldiers. She graduated from USD with a bachelor’s degree in psychology and English and later earned her master’s degree in counseling, also at USD. She married Clarence Drenkhahn in 1951. She was a stay-at-home mother, Girl Scout co-leader and Sunday school teacher. Later, she taught in a one-room school near Brookings, SD. The family moved to Pierre, SD in 1961. Harriette resumed teaching in the 1960’s and served as a junior high counselor for 18 years. In 1986 she moved to Spokane, where her daughter and family live. She particularly enjoyed a Spokane study group, The Seekers. Harriette traveled to Greece eight times and, over a span of 70 years, was involved with the Greek Sisterhood, The Daughters of Penelope. She lived a long, active, independent life of bountiful love and friendships. She believed in the dignity of each person, in reconciliation and redemption, and in responsible care of the earth. Thankful to have shared her life are her great-granddaughter, Ashleigh; grandson, Mike; son-in-law, Jim; daughter Mary Ann McCurdy; sister, Margaret Allen; brothers, Jim (Dottie) and John (Margery) Thompson; brother-in-law, Andy (Janice) Drenkhahn; 24 nieces and nephews and their families. Harriette was preceded in death by her husband, Clarence, in 1982 and by her sister, Maxine Buskohl in 1997. Her family thanks the City of Spokane Parks Department, Urban Forestry Division, for planting a tulip tree on the west side of Comstock Park in Harriette’s memory.