Gertrude D. Hollinger died peacefully surrounded by her family on Thursday, October 10, 2013 at the Pleasant View Retirement Community, Manheim. Gertrude was born June 17, 1918 in East Lampeter Township, Pennsylvania. She was the daughter of the late Mabel Diffenbaugh Martin and the late Elmer G. Martin (of Ezra W. Martin Meat Company) and grew up in Mellinger Mennonite Church where her Father was also the Bishop. She graduated in 1936 from East Lampeter Township High School. In 1940 she married Elam B. Hollinger of Manheim and in 1946 they were sent by the Mennonite Church to do mission work in rural Southern Alabama where together they were instrumental in establishing churches in 3 different communities. Twelve years later, they returned, with their five children to Lancaster County, Pennsylvania where Gertrude and her husband ministered in the Community Bible Church of Marietta for over 50 years. Gertrude taught Sunday school and Women’s Bible classes in the church and was frequently called upon as a speaker for special women’s events. In addition, she served as a teacher for Child Evangelism Fellowship of Lancaster County for many years and traveled internationally on mission trips where she used her teaching and serving skills in ministry. Gertrude was a volunteer docent at the Presidential Home of James Buchanan in Lancaster and was one of the original members of The Happy Hearts Club, a group of friends who met monthly from 16 years of age when they were in a Sunday school class together at Mellinger Mennonite Church until the women were well into their 90’s. The 75 year plus friendship of this group of women was so remarkable that they were featured in several local news publications in recent years.
Gertrude was preceded in death by her husband Elam, son, Jimmie, brother, Elmer Martin and sister, Miriam Yoder. She is survived by her four children, Ruth Senter (Mark) of Lake Forest, Illinois, Dennis (Mary Ann) of Beverly, Massachusetts, Daryl (Bonnie) of Murphys, California and Edward of Davidson, North Carolina. Three sisters, Anna Elizabeth Slaymaker (John) of Manheim, Lois J. Martin of Lititz, Eunice Keller (Lloyd) of Manheim. She is the grandmother of 10 and great grandmother of 11.
Relatives and friends are respectfully invited to attend her funeral service at the Community Bible Church, 331 Anderson Ferry Road, Marietta, on Sunday, October 20, 2013 at 2:00 PM. Interment will be in Mellinger Mennonite Cemetery, East Lampeter Township. There will be a viewing in the Hoffer Auditorium at the Pleasant View Retirement Community, 544 North Penryn Road, Manheim on Saturday, October 19, 2013 from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM with additional viewing on Sunday afternoon at the church from 1:00 PM until the time of the service. Those desiring may send contributions in Gertrude’s memory to Community Bible Church Memorial Gift Fund P. O. Box 180, Marietta, PA 17547.