Her four-year-long success story with stage 4 lung cancer is epic, and an inspiration to all that were blessed to know her.
Gretchen was born on December 10, 1946 as Pamela Fawn Delaney.
She was adopted by Herman and Peg Garske who named her Gretchen Gay Garske.
She graduated from Lewis and Clark High School in 1965, where she was the drum major.
On August 28th 1970, she married the love of her life, Rod DeRusha.
She received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Eastern Washington University in Speech Pathology.
She taught for over 38 years, 33 of those in the Central Valley School District.
She loved her students and was such a positive influence in their lives.
Gretchen had an incredibly positive outlook on life.
She was beautiful inside and out, strong, loving, generous, and most of all, fun.
She was always the life of the party and adored by her family and too many friends to count.
She was blessed to travel to some of her favorite places on earth, and spend countless hours with family and friends at their Priest Lake cabin.
She never met anyone that she didn’t like.
She had a habit of striking up conversations with total strangers, and more often than not, they became new friends.
She was preceded in death by her father, mother, and brother, Doug.
She is survived by her husband of 43 years Rod, her son Chris Noble, his wife Gina, and her beloved grandsons, Max, Cody and JT, six nieces, six nephews, nine great-nieces, six great-nephews, one great-great-niece and two great-great-nephews, plus one million friends.
A celebration of life will be planned for a later date.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in Gretchen’s name to Hospice of Spokane or Cancer Care Northwest.
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