Frank Junior Jelinek, age 87, of Marshall, died on Tuesday morning, October 27, 2020 at Glenn Arbor Hospice Residence in the loving care of his family.
Frank was born on September 28, 1933 in Marshall to Frank G. and Bertha Evangeline (Gilbert) Jelinek. Frank spent most of his life living in Marshall. He was a member of the 1952 Marshall High School graduation class and a proud Marshall Redskin.
Frank was enjoying a lunch at The Blue Pennant on W. Michigan Avenue with friend Bob Aalbregtse. Looking out the window he noticed an attractive young woman from Coldwater across the street where her father owned a new Dairy Queen. He pointed at who turned out to be Nancy Garvin and told Bob "I'm going to marry that girl!".
Frank arranged a first date to the wrestling matches at Mar Creek where he worked. Nancy was not excited about that at all and Frank explained that he worked there and got in free! Six months later on April 19, 1953 they were married and enjoyed a fruitful marriage of 67 years.
Frank was inducted into the U.S. Army in 1953. The couple moved to Fort Knox Kentucky for his 2 years of service, then returned to Marshall.
Frank became a Journeyman Tool and Die Maker after a four-year apprenticeship in tool and die at the former Marshall Mid State Machine and Tool. He worked there as a tool and die man until 1960.
That year he went to work at Kellogg Company in Battle Creek. He spent a career of over 30 years there until retiring in 1990. After his retirement he worked as a funeral associate until 1994 at Kempf Family Funeral and Cremation Services. Later he and Nancy worked together preparing homes for estate sales in Battle Creek for eight years.
He and Nancy enjoyed twenty years of winters in Winter Haven, Florida. There they enjoyed the company of Marshall friends and many new friends from other states who stayed in the same park on a golf course where they played many games of golf. Golf was a sport that both he and Nancy loved to play and passed that on to their family. He enjoyed playing cards with Nancy and friends. Above all else Frank loved his family, especially his time with his grandchildren later in life.
Surviving are his beloved wife Nancy, their daughters Terri (Fran) Loud of Scotts, Lori Tucker of Portage and Barbara (Don) Smith of Big Lake, Alaska; 4 grandchildren Bob (Grace) Tucker, Brandon Hubbard, Andrew Hubbard and Stephanie (Phil) Kuliczkowski; three great-grandchildren, and several step-grandchildren and step-great-grandchildren; his sister Marilyn Rathburn of Athens; and nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents, his brother Richard Jelinek and sister Shirley Chichester.
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, services will be private for the family with Rev. James Codde officiating. Committal services with military honors will be at Fort Custer National Cemetery. Arrangements are entrusted to Kempf Family Funeral and Cremation Services, 723 US HWY 27 N., Marshall. To leave the family a message visit https://www.kempffuneralhome.com The family suggests memorial contributions to either Glenn Arbor Hospice Residence through Hospice of Southwest Michigan or University of Michigan Kellogg Eye Center.
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