Francis Wanken, 87, of Eagle Grove, Iowa, passed away peacefully on February 13, 2021, at Iowa Specialty Hospital in Clarion, Iowa.
Francis Eugene Wanken was born on October 12, 1933, in Eagle Grove, Iowa, to Pete and Gladys (Smith) Wanken. He was raised and educated in Eagle Grove, attending Sacred Heart Catholic School and was a member of the Sacred Heart Catholic Church until the time of his death.
Francis joined the United States Army, serving from 1953-1955 and after basic training he was stationed in Germany until his honorable discharge. Gene was united in marriage with Judy Hirsch of Eagle Grove on May 18, 1963. They made their home and raised their family in Eagle Grove. They had just celebrated their 57th Wedding Anniversary last May.
Francis had worked several jobs growing up, which included construction, Eagle Mills, Farmland and Gold Eagle. He enjoyed fishing and hunting with his kids and family, riding his bicycle (all of the time) and he always had the biggest garden on the East side of town (he enjoyed sharing what he had planted with other people). He also enjoyed watching the birds at his birdfeeders outside his windows, family gatherings and loved when his kids and grandkids came to visit. After retirement, he worked at the Dow’s rest stop, until his wife needed extra help. They (and their dog, Sweet Pea) moved into the Rotary Senior Apartments in Eagle Grove where they resided until his death.
Francis is survived by his wife Judy of Eagle Grove; three children: Lori and Mike Hungate of Eagle Grove, Rick and Sue Wanken of Hampton and Rebecca Das of Eagle Grove; seven grandchildren: Andy, Brittany, Zachary, Derek, Christina, Amaya and Austin; four great-grandchildren: Cade, Madden, Ryker and Elijah (and was expecting his first great-granddaughter in April); sisters-in- law, Gaye Wanken of North Carolina, Lois Otto of Eagle Grove and Karen Williams (Robert) of Corwith; brother-in-law, Mike Hirsch (Caroline) of Eagle Grove and several nieces, nephews and cousins. He was preceded in death by his parents, Pete and Gladys Wanken; sisters, Katie, Betty, Marjorie, Mary, Rosalie and Sherry; brother Daniel and grandson, Cody Wanken.
Visitation will be Wednesday, February 17, at Foust Funeral Home in Eagle Grove the Rosary / Vigil will be at 3:15 and visitation from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. Mass of Christian Burial will be Thursday, February 18th at 2:00 p.m. at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Eagle Grove - it can be watched on the holy family cluster.org facebook page with burial in Mount Calvary Cemetery.
Masks are required as well as social distancing.
Memorials may be left to the discretion of the family.
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