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Oceanside Mortuary

602 South Coast Hwy
Oceanside, CA 92054
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Memories & Candles

“Laurie was one of my veterinary technicians for many years. She was always bubbly and so much fun! I am so sad hearing this news. Her family is in my...Read More »
1 of 2 | Posted by: Kelly Barnes - Indianapolis, IN

“Loretta, Billy, and family, I just want to let you know that I am very sorry to hear of Laurie's passing.Ed Cook ”
2 of 2 | Posted by: Ed Cook - Easton, PA


On Monday, September 4, 2017, Laurie Gerken passed away after a valiant battle with cancer at the age of 51. Predeceased by her father, William Gerken, Laurie is survived by her mother, Loretta Gerken, brother Billy Gerken (Christine), nephews Brian and Michael, niece Dianna, many close cousins and other loving family in New York and New Jersey, along with cherished friends from across the country who always kept Laurie in their hearts.
Laurie had a deep concern for the welfare of animals and pursued a career as a Veterinary Technician. She studied biotech at SUNY Cobleskill and animal science at Purdue University, after graduating from Pittsford-Mendon High School in New York. Early on, Laurie worked in Veterinary Emergency Hospitals, and later worked as a Lab Manager and Research Associate at the Salk Institute from 2004 to 2015. More recently, Laurie served as a Research Associate for Crown Bioscience and ATyr Pharma.
Laurie had a love of life that was revealed by her infectious laugh, wide smile and twinkling eyes. She was an adventurous soul, and traveled across the country numerous times, as well as to Mexico, Canada, the Caribbean and overseas to Europe. Her thirst of knowledge about all of the places she visited made her an amazing guide to those lucky enough to travel with her, as did her love of driving and the open road. She cherished her vehicles, not as possessions, but as companions.
Laurie's loyalty and devotion to people and causes was always felt, especially seen in the way she cared about her family, friends, and feline "children." Laurie's athleticism in her high school and college days as a runner and swimmer earned her many medals and awards. She enjoyed dancing, seeing live music, tasting fine wines, cooking, photography, and had a green thumb, as she nurtured all living things throughout her life.
A Memorial service will be held for Laurie on Saturday, September 23 at 11 a.m. at King of Kings Lutheran Church, 2993 MacDonald St., Oceanside, California. All are welcome. A light lunch reception will follow. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that a donation be made to your local animal shelter in Laurie's name.