Dc. Wally Gieringer
I am Wallace Arnold Gieringer, a child of God, husband of my precious wife, Suzy, father of seven sons, father-in-law of seven special ladies, grandfather of 22 plus great-grandfather of 10.
I was an only child of parents who divorced when I was a pre-teen. Raised by my father, I attended Catholic grade school, Chaminade College (a Catholic high school) and two years at Catholic St. Louis University.
Thus, my dad, the School Sisters of Notre Dame, Brothers of Mary and Jesuits contributed to my formation.
The Air Force took over with pilot training and Suzy and I married in 1950 when I received my wings. I served in the Korean War as an Air Force pilot and contracting officer.
After five years active duty, we returned to civilian life with Suzy as homemaker and me as a sales rep for a natural gas company.
In 1963 I began a 30-year career in economic development working to stimulate the economy and create new job opportunities for folks, first in the company's service area, and then from 1970 to 1994 in Pine Bluff.
Through these years, I was blessed to be an altar server, lector, retreat captain, parish trustee, president of a Catholic high school PTA, Scout leader and parish social action chair.
In 1982 a lovely Sisters of Charity nun, Sister Jane Frances Bey, looked me in the eye and said. 'You could and should do more for the Church.' That led me to apply for the diaconate program. I was ordained in 1986.
I have been described as loving, caring, religious, dedicated, sincere and trustworthy. The rest is history. Since retirement, Suzy says I vacuum and dust very well — most of the time.
Deacon Wally and Suzy Gieringer live in Hot Springs Village and are parishioners at Sacred Heart of Jesus Church. They have seven sons, 22 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren. Wally was ordained in November 1986 in Little Rock with our second class.