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Melvin Geffre

May 19, 1937 ~ December 15, 2023 (age 86) 86 Years Old

Melvin Geffre Obituary

Melvin Geffre (aka Waŋblí Wičháša “Eagle Man”)

Melvin Geffre, 86, of Aberdeen, SD, passed away peacefully on Friday, December 15, 2023, at Avera St. Luke’s Hospital, surrounded by his loving family.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, December 22, 2023, at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Aberdeen, with Father Mitchell McLaughlin officiating.

Burial will follow Mass at Sacred Heart Cemetery.

A time of fellowship and luncheon will follow the burial at the parish hall.

Visitation will be at Schriver’s Memorial Chapel from 5-7 p.m., Thursday, Dec 21, with a 7:00 p.m. liturgical wake and rosary service.

Schriver’s Memorial Mortuary and Crematory, 414 5th Avenue NW, Aberdeen, is in charge of arrangements.  Family and friends may sign the online guestbook at

Melvin’s service will be live-streamed and available for playback for 30 days after the service on Schriver’s Memorial Mortuary & Crematory Facebook page at

Melvin Geffre was born in Leola, South Dakota, to John and Catharina (Gisi) Geffre on May 19, 1937. He attended Leola school. He spent his early years working on the family farm.  As a young man, he worked at various farms in the Leola area. Melvin also worked for the Standard Oil gas station as an automotive mechanic. He worked for Pepsi Cola Bottling Company for 16 years as a truck driver and eventually as a route supervisor. Melvin owned and operated the Ice House/Gas Station from 1971-73. He also worked at Terrace Park Dairy as a truck driver and at the Holiday Inn as a maintenance technician.

He married Melvina Mary “Chinky” Rutherford on February 16, 1956 in Aberdeen, South Dakota, at Sacred Heart Church. Six children were born into this union: James “Jim," Kathy, Carol, Warren, Keith, and Darren.

He was a member of Sacred Heart Parish of Aberdeen, SD. After retirement in 1990, Melvin and Melvina followed their passion for arts and crafts and operated M & M Geffre Gifts. They attended many craft shows around the area. Melvin was a talented woodworker and created many beautiful wood items. Melvina loved making beaded items. Melvin’s specialty was end tables and angels.

Melvin also had a real passion for hunting and fishing. He enjoyed camping with the family, and their camper was always home base at the campground. Gardening was another pastime Melvin enjoyed. He and his wife were well known for their apple pies made from their apple trees. They also canned much of their harvested vegetables. He was also known for his canned pickles.

The best times of their life were spent at their Mina Lake home, where they lived for 23 years. They hosted countless family gatherings. Family meant a lot to Melvin and his wife, and they always looked forward to the family coming to spend time at their lake house. They would happily prepare large meals for everyone and made sure no one went away hungry. He was known as ‘Papa’ to his grandchildren and great-grandchildren. He had a real soft heart for his grandchildren and great-grandchildren. He was very proud of his family.

Every year their vacations were spent on the Blackfeet Indian Reservation. It was very important to Melvin that his family spend time visiting family in Montana. He especially enjoyed trout fishing with his father-in-law and other members of his wife’s family. Many special memories were made over the years.

He will be dearly missed by his children: James (Peggy) Geffre of Wasilla, AK, Kathy (Tom) Waage of Aberdeen, SD, Carol (Peter) McNally of Beverley, England, United Kingdom, Warren (Pam) Geffre, Cape Coral, FL, Keith Geffre of Aberdeen, and Darren (Angela) Geffre of Albuquerque, NM; 17 grandchildren; 32 great-grandchildren; 1 great-great-grandchild; brothers Leonard Geffre and Paul Geffre, both of Aberdeen, SD.  

He was preceded in death by his father and mother; wife of 49 years, Melvina; his brothers Edwin Geffre and Eugene Geffre; and one great-grandchild.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Melvin Geffre, please visit our floral store.

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