Clara Mary Gurka, 88, of Chappell Hill, Texas, passed away peacefully at High Hope Care Center on October 31, 2022, surrounded by her beloved family.
Clara was born in Chappell Hill, Texas on July 7th, 1934, to John and Annie Gurka. She was baptized at the age of 3 days, on July 10th, by Reverend Eugene Shepard at St. Stanislaus Catholic Church in Chappell Hill, Texas. She became a member of St. Stanislaus, was confirmed and received First Holy Communion with Reverend John D. Wesolek.
Clara attended Chappell Hill Catholic School and later Armstrong School, a rural school.
Clara was married to Leonard A. Lewis at the age of 19, but was widowed just 3 years later when Leonard was killed in a tragic accident. Their marriage produced a son, Douglas. It was a blended family, as Leonard brought with him to the marriage, 3 children, son Leonard Wayne, and daughters, Anita Kay, and Pat.
Clara later married J.C. Adler. Their marriage produced a daughter, Laurie and a son, David.
Clara grew up during the Great Depression and was no stranger to hard work, an ethic that lasted throughout her lifetime. She left school at the age of 14 to help her parents work the cotton fields. She worked the remainder of her life in Brenham at various jobs. In the 1950’s, she worked at the Main St. Dairy Queen. She was a talented seamstress and worked several years for Nat’s Tiny Tots, making baby clothes. Clara later achieved her GED certificate and went to work for the Brenham State School, where she worked for many years, until retiring at the age of 62. She continued working after retirement, cleaning houses, or doing private duty care for those in need.
Clara loved working outside, singing, embroidery, sewing, and shopping, especially for shoes! Some of her happiest times were when she took her “kiddos” to the lake! Clara loved her family deeply, and her greatest joy was spending time with them. Clara was very much loved, and her bright spirit will be missed by all.
The family would like to thank Brazos Valley Hospice, and the staff at High Hope Care Center for your attention and kindness.
Clara was preceded in death by two husbands, Leonard A. Lewis and J.C. Adler, a son, Douglas Lewis, her parents, John and Annie Gurka, a brother, Chester Gurka, three nephews, Chester (Bobo) Gurka, Eddie Gurka, and David Gurka and grand-daughter in law, Julie Farwell and numerous cousins, nieces and nephews.
She is survived by her brother and sister in law Joe and BeBe Gurka, daughter and son in law, Laurie and Gerald Wehring of Brenham, her son, David Adler of Chappell Hill; step children, Leonard Lewis and wife Linda, Anita Kay and husband James Golaz, and Pat Swindle; grandchildren, Joseph Farwell, Chris Maynard, Brian and wife Katelyn Maynard, Jennifer Maynard, and Jessica Mertz; and great-grandchildren, Jaden and Korbin Mertz, Madisyn, Bricen, Owen, and Braelynn Maynard, and Keaton Wilson.
Visitation will be held at Memorial Oaks Chapel, 1306 W. Main St. Brenham, Texas from 5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m., Thursday, November 3, 2022 with a rosary at 7:00 p.m.
Services will be held at 10:00 a.m., Friday, November 4, 2022 at St. Stanislaus Catholic Church in Chappell Hill with Father Thaddeus Tabak officiating. Interment to follow at the church cemetery. After burial service, a reception will be held at Chappell Hill Bakery and Deli.
Pallbearers are David Adler, Gerald Wehring, Joseph Farwell, Harold Tappe Jr., Tim Murski, and Michael Black.
Funeral arrangements are entrusted to Memorial Oaks Chapel, 1306 West Main Street, Brenham, TX 77833.