Gail L. (Firster) Behnke

November 27, 1940 ~ March 17, 2020 (age 79)

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Gail L. Behnke, 79

Poland - Gail L. Behnke, 79, passed away Tuesday evening, March 17, 2020 at her home surrounded by her loving family. 

Gail was born November 27, 1940 in Warren, the daughter of the late Harold and Sofia "Sophie" (Barb) Firster.

She graduated from Warren Harding and attended Mount Union College. 

Gail started in the work force as an executive secretary for U.S. Steel for 10 years. Afterwards, she became an accomplished interior decorator and built a very successful career in the furniture sales for La-Z-Boy Furniture Galleries, over 20 years, before retiring. 

She was a former member of Poland Presbyterian Church, a member of the American Business Women's Association (ABWA), Job's Daughters International and the YMCA Silver Sneakers. 

Gail was first and foremost a devoted wife and mother. After the passing of her husband in 1996, she dedicated her life to the well-being and betterment of her children. Her family and friends will remember her as a very strong-willed woman, a compassionate and selfless individual tending to the needs of everyone else before her own. She served as a rock and an inspiration to her family and friends. She was loved to her final breath on this earth...which included her little companion Mitzy.   

Gail is survived by two sons, Eric V. (Heidi) Behnke of Poland and Hans V. Behnke of Boardman; her brother, Dr. Harold "Buzz" O. (Irene) Firster of Newton Falls, Ohio. 

Besides her parents, Gail was preceded in death by her husband of 32 years, George H. Behnke whom she married on September 26, 1964 and died on February 5, 1996. 

Per Gail's request, private funeral services were held on Saturday, March 21, 2020 at Poland Riverside Cemetery with Chaplain Wayne Benner officiating. 

There are no calling hours. 

The family requests that material tributes take the form of contributions to Harbor Light Hospice, 4531 Belmont Avenue, Unit 9, Youngstown, Ohio 44509 in memory of Gail. 

Arrangements were handled by Cunningham-Becker Funeral Home, 270 N. Main Street in Poland. 

Condolences may be sent at 

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Gail L. (Firster) Behnke, please visit our floral store.


Private Services

Poland Riverside Cemetery, Poland


Harbor Light Hospice
4531 Belmont Avenue, Unit 9, Youngstown OH 44509

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