Dean M. Greunke

January 27, 1933June 11, 2018

Rev. Dean Greunke was called to glory, June 11, 2018. He served in the NID for forty years as pastor of Emmanuel, Aurora, interim pastor at St. Paul, Aurora and pastor of Zion, Naperville. He served as Chaplain on call at Rush Copley Hospital, Aurora, for thirty-five years. He earned his clinical pastoral education credits at Good Samaritan Hospital, Downers Grove, and Mercy Center, Aurora. He was an active participant in church league sports in Aurora. Pastor Greunke was born in Arlington, NE, the eldest son of Max and Elsa (Knecht) Greunke. He was baptized and confirmed in the faith at St Paul Lutheran, Arlington, NE. He graduated from St. Paul High School, Concordia, MO. In 1951 and St. Paul College in 1953. He continued his pastoral education at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, Mo. Prior to vicarage at Zion Lutheran Stamford, CT. he married Janette Meyer at St. Paul Lutheran Church, Concordia, Mo. He graduated from seminary in 1958. He was ordained in his first parish, Trinity, Dillsboro, IN on July 6, 1958, and served there until he was called by Western District to begin a mission in Memphis, TN, in 1962. Good Shepherd Church was established. While in Memphis he served as last Western District LWML counselor and first LWML District Counselor to the MidSouth District. He also served as Lutheran Chaplain on call to the Naval Air Station, Millington, TN. He began service in NID in 1969 and served there until moving to Lutheran Haven, Oviedo, FL. In 2007. Pastor Greunke is survived by his wife, Janette (Meyer) Greunke and children, Janelle Zelensek of Montgomery, IL, David (Marit) Greunke of San Diego, CA and Joel (Christa) Greunke of Elgin, IL. Six grandchildren and three great grandchildren. Memorial Service to be held Monday, June 18, 2018 at 11:00AM at St. Luke’s Lutheran Church , Oviedo, FL 32765


  • Janette (Meyer) Greunke, Wife
  • Janelle Zelensek, Daughter
  • David IMarit) Greunke, Son
  • Joel (Christa) Greunke, Son
  • Rev. Greunke is also survived by six grandchildren and three great grandchildren.


  • Funeral Service Monday, June 18, 2018
  • Committal Service Monday, June 18, 2018

Dean M. Greunke

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Dieter and Karen Meyer

June 15, 2018

Pastor Gruenke was always a people person. We will miss him and remember him always. He was our favorite pastor at Emmanuel and a good friend. RIP pastor!

Rev. Dan Sullivan

June 15, 2018

Janette, Janelle, David & Joel,

You are in our thoughts and prayers in this time of mixed sorrow and joy, tears and laughter, the sharing of stories and the telling of tales. What a wonderful friend, colleague, and man of diverse ministerial experience! Dean left an indelible mark upon the greater Aurora faith community and his Rush Copley Hospital family. How many people (patients, families, physicians, nurses, chaplains and other hospital staff) did he encounter during 35 years of on-call chaplain ministry? Only God knows. I am/we are richer and blessed as a consequence. Thank you for sharing him with us for so long. Dean, well done, good and faithful servant... May you rest in Peace, my friend!

Rev. Dan Sullivan
On Behalf of the Spiritual Care Staff of Rush Copley Medical Center

Janice (Seifrid) Pittman

June 14, 2018

Janette, Janelle, David and Joel,

So very sorry to hear about Pastor. I will always think of him fondly, and treasure the years he spent at Emmanuel. It was a privilege to hear him preach again when we had our 30th confirmation class reunion (or it may have been at the 100th church anniversary service). My sons have renewed and continue playing for the Emmanuel fastpitch team at Pierce Field although it's not strictly church league anymore. You are in my thoughts and prayers, and may God's peace be with you.

Janice Seifrid Pittman

Richard Sheldon

June 14, 2018

Pastor Greunke married my wife and I in 1973 and baptized both of our sons. God bless to him for his service to to his faith and the work he has done over the decades with his parishioners and every other life he has touched.

My deepest sympathies go out to the family.

Deb Clouthier

June 14, 2018

Pastor Dean was like a father to me. He lead my spiritual life from childhood to adult, giving me the strong faith foundation that keeps me active in my faith today. He, also, was an unconditional friend to my father, John Barrett.
Pastor Dean, May God bless you with His Heavenly Peace.
Love, Deb Clouthier