ELLINWOOD — Gaile Holland Zelenka, 95, died Aug. 20, 2011 at her home in rural Ellinwood.
She was born Sept. 13, 1915 on the Island of Borneo, South China Sea, the daughter of the Rev. Charles E. and Delle M. (Holland) Davis. Her parents were the first missionaries to the Iban head-hunter tribes in the interior jungles of Borneo, where they set up a church and school. Her parents were forced to return to the United States when Gaile was two years old, due to the Rev. Davis’ severe illness. Subsequently, her father pastored Methodist churches throughout eastern Kansas.
Gaile attended Southwestern College in Winfield, graduating in 1936. She first taught at Fowler, and then Augusta. She married Alva Clawson in 1948. A daughter, Jan, was born the following year. Gaile moved to Great Bend with her parents and young daughter in 1953 where she began teaching kindergarten at Riley Elementary. She taught there until 1975, when she transferred to Eisenhower Elementary, retiring in 1978. Gaile was an Ellinwood resident since 1999, coming from Great Bend, where she lived from 1953 to 1999. She married Anton J. “Tony” Zelenka July 11, 1969 in Great Bend. He died Dec. 19, 1996.
Mrs. Zelenka was a member of the First Baptist Church in Ellinwood, KNEA and NEA.
Survivors include a daughter, Jan Carnes and husband Jim, Ellinwood; and a grandson, Chris Crone and wife Maria, Burbank, Calif.
Funeral services are scheduled at 11 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 27 at the First Baptist Church in Ellinwood officiated by Pastor David Wesner. There will be no visitation as cremation has taken place.
Memorials are suggested to the First Baptist Church for the benefit of the Concerned Christian Fund, Children’s Ministry or Senior Saint Ministry, in care of the Bryant Funeral Home. Condolences may be sent and notice viewed at www.bryantfh.net.
Funeral arrangements provided by
Bryant Funeral Home**
1425 Patton Road
Great Bend, KS, 67530
Great Bend (Kan) Tribune, Aug. 24, 2011