Jesuit Father Robert F. Rekofke died on Aug. 11, 2014, at Hospice House in Spokane, Washington. He was 89. A priest, pastor and high college teacher, Fr. Rekofke enjoyed spending time with men and women of all ages, listening to their life stories and helping them to see the goodness in themselves.
The fourth of five siblings, Fr. Rekofke was born in Centralia, Washington, on Aug. 6, 1925, to Joseph and Elizabeth (Bieker) Rekofke. He did his formal schooling in Spokane (Sacred Heart Grade and Gonzaga Preparatory Schools). At the conclusion of his service in the Navy throughout WWII, he entered the Jesuit Novitiate at Sheridan, Oregon, in September 1947 and followed the normal course of research and training. Fr. Rekofke was ordained a priest on June 13, 1959, in Spokane.
Though Fr. Rekofke taught high school Latin and religion for 10 years soon after his ordination (Bellarmine Preparatory, Tacoma, and Gonzaga Preparatory, Spokane), his passion was for parish function and helping individuals. He was versatile in serving both shorter- and longer-term parish assignments.
Fr. Rekofke is survived by his older sister, Sally Olstad (Don) of Spokane. He was preceded in death by his parents, Joseph and Elizabeth Rekofke; his older sister, Armella Roberg (Ed); older brother, Joe (Jeannea); and his younger brother, Ed (Maxine). He is also survived by various nieces and nephews, grand nieces and nephews, cousins and his brother Jesuits of the Oregon Province.