Antoinette “Babe” Pelkey

January 19, 2023Obituaries
Antoinette “Babe” Pelkey

Antoinette “Babe” Pelkey was born to Art and Katherine Kilker on December 23, 1924, in Sturgis, SD.

She is preceded in death by her husband, Eugene Francis Pelkey, parents, Arthur and Katherine (Raskob) Kilker, Daughter, Debbie May; and two sisters.

Babe is survived by son-in-law, Bob May; her two grandchildren, Bobby (Megan), and Becky May, CA; Great Grandson, Matthew May; four nephews; two nieces; seven great-nephews; and three great-nieces; and many other special friends.

She graduated from St. Martin’s in 1942, and was a member of St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church in Sturgis. She began working at the majestic Theatre for Ted Jastoeff, and started as a popcorn girl, then as an usherette, up to a cashier. Then August 23, 1943, she started as full time at J.C. Penney’s in Sturgis and worked there for 43 years and the store closed on August 26, 1986, after the mall opened in Rapid City. Babe married Frank Pelkey on July 20, 1949, at St. Martin’s Chapel in Sturgis, SD. After 6 months of retiring from JC Penney she started working for Dorothy and Vern Allison at the Sturgis Tribune newspaper, later it was sold to Dickson Media. After 11 years there she and Frank decided to retire.

Babe and Frank were bowlers and loved going bowling, and going to Deadwood.

Babe Pelkey, 98, of Sturgis, SD, died Tuesday, January 17, 2023, at Monument Health Sturgis hospital.

Visitation will be 5-7 p.m. with a rosary to begin at 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday, January 25, 2023, at Kinkade Funeral Chapel in Sturgis.

Funeral services will be 10:00 a.m. on Thursday, January 26, 2023, at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church in Sturgis. Interment to follow at Black Hills National Cemetery near Sturgis.

Condolences may be sent to the family at