David Gregory Gerst Sr.



Memorial Contributions

Emmanuel Hospice

401 Hall Street, Ste 263

Grand Rapids, MI 49503

David Gregory Gerst Sr., age 91 of Lowell, MI & Naples, Fl., entered Eternal life Saturday, March 6, 2021. He was preceded in death by his wife, E. Joyce (2010); daughter, Pamela Ann (1977); and siblings. David is survived by his children, Susan (Peter) Rigas, David (Leslie) Gerst Jr., Mark (Michelle) Gerst; grandchildren, David (Angela) Rigas, Dr. David (Dr. Monica) Gerst III, Molly (Bryan) Anderson, Meghan (Garrett) Runion, Paulina (Jesse Guevara-Lehker) Levy, Remington Gerst, Marc Gerst; Nick (Serena) Rigas, Katie (Matt) DeCamp, Susie Rigas, Kevin (Kira) Tyler, Kelsey Tyler; 21 great-grandchildren; sister-in-law, Kay Hinkston; also, nieces and nephews. He was born in Traverse City, MI September 20, 1929. David served in the United States Marines during the Korean Conflict. He and wife Joyce started their family funeral businesses in 1969 by purchasing O’Brien-Gerst Funeral Home, in 1972 Roth-Gerst Funeral Home, and also, he and his sons acquired Eggebeen-Gerst Funeral Home in the early 80’s. Dave loved and enjoyed the Great Lakes, Gulf of Mexico, boating, and living his retirement years in Naples, Fl. that he fondly referred to as “Another day in paradise”. He was a good, quiet, solid, caring man that will be missed. Dave’s family would like to say a special thanks to Porter Hills, Senior Helpers, Green Acres, Amy R., and Emmanuel Hospice staff for the wonderful care given to our dad and grandpa. Visitation will take place Wednesday, March 10, 2021 from 1-3pm at ROTH-GERST CHAPEL, 305 N. Hudson, Lowell, MI 49331, and 6-8pm at O’BRIEN-EGGEBEEN-GERST CHAPEL, 3980 Cascade Rd. SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49546. Mass of Christian Burial will be held Thursday, March 11, 2021, 1pm at St. Paul the Apostle Catholic Church, 2750 Burton St SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49546. Mass may be viewed at https://youtu.be/dvg4TKk2htU Rev. Michael Goodwin, Msgr. Ernest Schneider, and Rev. Troy Nevins concelebrants. Masks and social distancing will be required at all locations. Interment Findlay Cemetery, Ada Twp. Memorial contributions may be made to Emmanuel Hospice, 401 Hall Street, Ste 263, Grand Rapids, MI 49503.

Sign the Guestbook

17 Responses

  1. David was a great friend for the past 30 years. We enjoyed summer cruises on the Great Lakes, daily boating or biking in Naples, FL, lunches or dinners together and sipping a Dewar’s on the rocks at day’s end. I am going to miss his companionship and dry sense of humor.

  2. Dave and Mark,
    So sorry for your loss. I really enjoyed knowing your dad he was awesome. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your families.

  3. My sympathies to you Mark and your entire family. Sorry for your loss. Wish you and the family God’s Blessings.

    Brian Wakeman
    Wakeman Funeral Home
    Saginaw, Michigan

  4. Hard to believe that forty years ago Mr. Gerst took a chance on a young girl who wanted to be a funeral director, he hired me that day! I was able to work there for 16 years. I have had an awesome career since then all because of him, Dave Jr., and Mark. Now my daughter is a funeral director also. He was a great person. So sorry for your loss. Love Kelly

  5. David Gerst was a first-class businessman, a true gentleman, and a pleasure to work with. I was his Batesville Casket rep for many years. Dave was easy to be with and always made our meetings something to look forward to. Dave loved his family, cared deeply about his funeral work, and was a true professional in every way. It just doesn’t get any better than that. My sympathy to his family at this time, especially to his sons Dave and Mark who I also had the pleasure of working with and who will carry on beautifully in their father’s footsteps.

  6. Dave, Mark and Family.

    I am sorry for your loss. Your description of Dave Sr. as a “good, quiet, solid, caring man” seems just perfect. I remember how he would even smile gently. Harold Englehardt would probably add his generation’s description of “Salt of the Earth Fella”. May he rest in the same peace he created for us all.

  7. Dave was one of my greatest friends for the past 40+ years. A true professional, trusted mentor, great father to Sue, Dave, Mark and Pam and a wonderful life partner to Joyce – also a kind and loving grandfather! Dave was a genuine and wonderful human who will be missed dearly.

  8. Dave and Mark,

    I’m so sorry to hear of your father’s passing. He will be missed by many. I miss the “old days” when funeral directors would come into the office at Blodgett to pick up death certificates. I was always so impressed with your professionalism and friendship. Hold your memories close to your heart.

    Sue Atwood

  9. Dave & Mark:
    Sympathies on your dad’s death. I remember riding in the backseat of his white lead Cadillac many times as an altar boy serving funerals at St. Paul’s. My interest in funeral service was birthed during those times as I watched your dad’s elegance, grace and care toward families and I am proud to call the Gerst family colleagues today as a fellow funeral director. May you be blessed as you honor and celebrate your dad today.

  10. Dave and Mark,
    Gary and I are very sad to hear of your dad’s passing. He was the very first one to make me laugh after my son, Billy passed away. He was so easy to love. May fond memories help ease the pain of your loss. Sending prayers to you and your extended families.
    Gary and Cathy Acker

  11. My thoughts and prayers are with the entire Gerst family. I first met Dave and his wife, Joyce, when they moved to the Terrances in Naples, over 30 years ago. With Dave’s passing, I think fondly of the things he enjoyed in life – his family, meeting close friends for a meal or by the pool, boating, riding his motor-scooter, meeting new people and watching the sunsets. Some time after each of our spouses passed, I had a the honor and pleasure to grow close to Dave. I will miss his kindness, his sense of humor and his friendship. May he Rest In Peace .

  12. Dear Gerst Family,
    We were so sorry to learn of the passing of your Dad. He was a lovely, kind man and we will always remember him fondly. We enjoyed the beautiful live streamed service but regret that we are not able to give our condolences in person. You have always been so kind and supportive to us in our moments of loss. You are all in our thoughts and prayers. May his memory be eternal!
    God bless,
    Georgia & Doug

  13. I am so sorry to hear that Mr. Gerst has passed away. He was a great man and will be missed by all. I have great memories of working for him and I learned a lot from him; RIP Mr. Gerst.

  14. Dave and Mark,
    I’m so very sorry to just hear about the passing of your dad. He was always such a kind man, who had a way of brightening your day with that smile of his! ! I’ll always appreciate him bringing you both into Keiser’s for lunch when we were college kids, starting our long friendship.
    I hope you know how much he meant to our family, and our whole community! He lived a wonderful life and now will be embraced by our Heavenly Father! Sending our deepest condolences, and biggest hugs!

  15. Dave, Mark & family,
    So sorry to hear that your dad passed away. He was a good man. Fortunately, he raised two fine sons who I’m confident will carry on his fine legacy. Lots of hugs from the Corder family!
    Scott Corder

  16. Susan, David & Mark,

    Sympathies from the the Mike and Lee Wittenbach family.
    We are so sorry for the loss of your father. We know you will miss him dearly. Our parents knew each other and enjoyed good times together!!! Lots of smiles and laughs!!!! All of you have been there for us during times of loss and supported us in many ways. Now our heartfelt and deepest sympathies go out to you.

    We are sending our blessings and hugs to you. You are in our thoughts and prayers.

    Lynn & Greg Van Drie
    Carol Drenth
    Denny Wittenbach & Marta Rozema

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.