Gretchen Trinklein, 56, passed away on June 21, 2022 in Phoenix Arizona. She was born to Rev. Arnold and Mary (nee Zander) Frank in Whittier California. Gretchen graduated from Coronado High School in 1983 and was named Home Coming Queen. She graduated from Christ College in Irvine CA in 1987 and was named their Home Coming Queen. She married Rev. Dr. John “Hans” Trinklein on July 24, 1994 at St. Lorenz Lutheran Church in Frankenmuth MI.
Together they served churches in Pierce, Nebraska (6 years) and Okawville, Illinois (15 years) before answering the Lord’s call to South Korea, where Hans served as a missionary (theological educator) at Luther University & Seminary in Yongin-si for five years until Gretchen’s illness required a medical evacuation back to the States in 2021.
Gretchen was a whole-hearted disciple of her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. She served Him with all her strength, homeschooling their four children from grades K-12, teaching them to love Him, and showing firsthand what ‘simplicity of devotion to Jesus’ looked like in real life.
Gretchen enjoyed reading and studying God’s Word, playing guitar, and singing His praises. She was a talented artist and had the ability to start conversations with anyone, showing genuine love for—and interest in—everyone she met. Combined with her contagious laugh and gift of hospitality, she was able to make virtually anyone feel at home and truly valued.
In Korea Gretchen discovered a new passion: caring for little ones at a nearby orphanage. Often accompanied by Mike, she would spend hours playing with, and loving on, children whose tongue she did not speak but who understood the universal language of unconditional love.
Gretchen loved spending time with her family, playing games, going for walks, and talking about Jesus. She was part of many Bible studies and a willing participant in any church activity that needed her. She was a beautiful and irreplaceable ‘helpmeet’ to her husband in his ministry, and she was deeply loved by all who knew her.
She leaves behind her husband Rev. Dr. John “Hans” Trinklein; children Jael (Levi) Karth, Windsor CO, Abigail Trinklein, Phoenix AZ, Michael Trinklein, Phoenix AZ, John Trinklein, Phoenix AZ; grandchildren Ezequiel Karth (2020), Esperanza Karth (2021); parents Arnold & Mary Frank, Phoenix AZ; her mother-in-law Margaret Trinklein, Downers Grove IL; her siblings Heidi Frank, Phoenix AZ, Wendy (Dennis) Clancy, Phoenix AZ, Becky (John) Castelhano, New Fairfield CT, Rachel (Sean) Bates, Phoenix AZ, Nathaniel (Sara) Frank, McCook NE.; nearly two dozen nieces and nephews and countless friends in Christ all over the world. She was preceded in death by her grandparents, her father-in-law, Dr. Fred Trinklein, and a younger brother, Michael, in infancy.
Visitation will be held at St. John’s Lutheran Church, New Minden, IL on Monday evening, July 11, from 5:00-8:00 p.m. A memorial service will be held at St. John’s Lutheran Church, New Minden, IL on Tuesday morning, July 12, at 10:00 a.m., with the Trinklein children being joined by a number of friends to provide music celebrating Gretchen’s victory over death by the power and mercy of Jesus Christ. Her remains will be committed to the earth at the Olive Branch Lutheran Church cemetery after the service, to await the day of Resurrection. A luncheon will follow in the Olive Branch Fellowship Hall. There will also be a memorial service and luncheon at Christ Church Lutheran, 3901 E. Indian School Road, Phoenix, AZ on Saturday morning, July 16, at 11:00 a.m.
RSVP Requests: Note that a website has been established for the July 12 Okawville event; friends and family who wish to attend are asked to RSVP at https://www.eventcreate.com/e/gretchen-s-okawville-memorial to allow our little country church to prepare the right amount of food for the luncheon. PLEASE?? ❤️
Note that a website has also been established for the July 16 Phoenix event; friends and family who wish to attend there are asked to RSVP at https://www.eventcreate.com/e/gretchen-s-phoenix-memorial
Picture Request! Do you have any favorite pictures of Gretchen? Her family invites you to send them to TrinkleinMemorial@gmail.com. We will include as many as possible in a video montage to be shown at the visitation/memorials. Please spread the news!
Memorials: Memorials may be sent to either The Evangelical Sisterhood of Mary (a.k.a. Canaan in the Desert) 9849 N. 40th Street, Phoenix, AZ 85028 or Mission Central – LCMS World Mission 40718 Highway E 16, Mapleton, IA 51034
You may also leave condolences for the family at www.whitneymurphyfuneralhome.com