Gerda Hansine Larsen passed away peacefully at the age of 93 surrounded by her family, at the Atterdag Care Center in Solvang. She was born in Gerskov, Fyn, Denmark, on November 9, 1923, to Anders and Karen Christiansen. Gerda immigrated with her husband, Arne and their three children to Canada in 1957. In 1961 the family decided to immigrate to the U.S. and if that didn't work out, they would head back to Denmark. Along the route they stopped to see "The Little Danish Town of Solvang", and they never left. Gerda and Arne both got jobs very quickly in Solvang. Her first job was at Hans and Mable Petersen's laundry on Copenhagen Dr. She cleaned rooms at the Scandia Motel and then worked as a waitress at Ellen's Pancake House. She also waitressed at Margaret and Paul's Restaurant and then at the Mollekroen Restaurant, which her son Uffe (Jack) eventually ended up owning. She later became the owner of Gerda's Yardage, which has been merged into her daughter Birgitte's current shop, Gerda's Iron Art. Gerda and her husband Arne, were honered by being named the Danish Days Parade Grand Marshalls in 2003. One of her greatest joys was working in her garden and, even at the age of 92, she was still out there weeding and raking to make it look perfect! Gerda is survived by her son Uffe (Jack) Larsen (Marianne), daughters Birgitte Pedersen (Steven) and Jette Meraz (Martin). Grandchildren: Sven Larsen, Paul Larsen (Cassie), Kirsten Pedersen, Matt Pedersen, John Lopez (Kristie), Jake Lopez (Monique), J.D. Lopez and Marty Meraz. Great-Grandchildren: Lilly, Grace and Chloe Lopez and Isabella and Lance Lopez and Jebsteen Johnson. Also her many nieces and nephews in Denmark and Canada. Gerda was preceded in death by her husband Arne, sisters Tove and Emma and her Brother Knud-Borge. As per Gerda's request, interment will be private. Please make any donations to The Atterdag Care Center, Bethania Lutheran Church, Hospice or your favorite charity. We would like to thank Dr. Lane, Pablo Rojas, the great staff at Santa Ynez Valley Cottage Hospital, the gentle and caring Hospice Ladies and the wonderful and loving staff at Atterdag Care Center who treated her like a queen! Also to the Loper Funeral Chapel and their special care. And a special thanks to her gentle and loving longtime caregiver and special angel, Monique!
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