Charlotte Garrelts

Charlotte A. (Pihlcrantz) Garrelts, 88, of Kearney, formerly of Hildreth, passed away on Wednesday,  March 30, 2022 at Country House Assisted Living in Kearney, Nebraska. Funeral services were held at 10:30 a.m. on Monday, April 4, 2022 at Trinity Lutheran Church in Hildreth with the Rev. Caroline Keenan officiating. The service was live streamed to the church’s Facebook and YouTube pages. Interment will be held following the service at the West Salem Cemetery, south of Hildreth. Visitation was held from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. on Sunday, April 3, 2022 at the Craig Funeral Home – Jelden Chapel in Hildreth. Memorials in Charlotte’s honor are kindly suggested to the Alzheimer’s Association – Kearney Chapter, Trinity Lutheran Church in Hildreth, or to the Hildreth Volunteer Fire Department. Arrangements are under the care of Craig Funeral Home. 

Charlotte was born July 26, 1933 in Medford, Massachusetts to Carl and Adria (Smith) Pihlcrantz. During her childhood, Charlotte’s family moved to Orrington, Maine. She was baptized April 1, 1945 at First Baptist Church in Bath, Maine. Charlotte graduated in 1952 from Brewer High School located in Brewer, Maine. 

Charlotte met the love of her life, Wayne in 1951, while Wayne was stationed in the Air National Guard in Bangor, Maine. They were married on September 6, 1952 at the Orrington Corner Methodist Church. They were married for 60 years and blessed with 3 children; David, Debra, and Daniel.

Charlotte and Wayne made their first home in Pineville, Louisiana. Then moved to their farm southwest of Hildreth where Charlotte helped Wayne by driving a truck at harvest and milking cows. Later in life she enjoyed crafting, sewing, and painting. She also enjoyed her travels and wintering in Arizona. 

Although Charlotte made Nebraska her home, she never let go of her roots of being a Maine-i-ac and sometimes you could hear her eastern coast accent. Charlotte was a member of Trinity Lutheran Church, Hildreth NE. 

Survivors include Sons – David Garrelts and wife Diane, Aurora, NE; Daniel Garrelts and wife Roxanne, Hildreth, NE;  Daughter- Deb Gdowski and husband Ted, Columbus, NE. 

Grandchildren – Johnathon Garrelts, Hildreth NE; Rebecca (Garrelts) James and husband Adam, Bancroft NE; Denise (Garrelts) Vargas, Lincoln NE; and Deanna (Garrelts) Handrup and husband Brandon, Hampton, NE. 

Great Grandchildren – Nolan Vargas, Lincoln NE; Addison James, Makenna James, and Jaylynn James, Bancroft NE; and Brooks Handrup, Deagan Handrup, Blaykley Handrup, and Braya Handrup, Hampton NE. 

Charlotte was preceded in death by her husband, Wayne Garrelts. Her parents, Carl and Adria; sister Arlene Manzo; and brother Charles Pihlcrantz.

Tributes and memories can be shared with the family at