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Frank Formanek 1926-2012

Frank Formanek, 86, of Henning, Minn., died on Nov. 21 at the Henning Golden Living Center. Funeral services were held on Nov. 26 at St. Edward's Catholic Church in Henning, with Fr. Leroy Schik officiating. Music was provided by Paul Malecha, organist and Daniel Formanek, vocalist. Interment was in Lakewood Cemetery in Crosby, Minn., with Fr. Timothy Deutsch leading the committal service. Military honors were provided by Ironton Post #443. Arrangements were with Belmont Funeral Home, Henning. Online condolences at

Frank John Formanek was born on May 8, 1926 in Crosby, the son of Frank and Pearl (Collard) Formanek. He had one younger sister, Rose Marie. The family resided in Crosby-Ironton where he attended both elementary and high schools, graduating in 1944. Upon graduation, he enlisted in the US Navy, attending boot camp in Coeur de Lane, Idaho. Upon completion of boot camp he served on the USS Gasconade in the Pacific Theater of Operations. He was in Tokyo Bay when the Japanese surrendered to the allies and was witness to that historic event, which ended World War II. Upon completing his service to his country from 1944-1946, Frank returned to Crosby where he enrolled in Crosby-Ironton Community College and earned an associates degree. He then entered Mankato State earning a Bachelor of Science degree in social studies in March of 1951. On March 31, 1951 he was married to Elizabeth (Liz) Butorac at St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Crosby. The couple resided in Crosby until the fall of 1952 when Frank was offered his first teaching position in Raymond, Minn. He taught there for six years and always spoke fondly of his time there, until this day keeping in touch with some of his students. In the summer of 1958 he attended the University of Minnesota and received his certification for administration. In the fall of 1958, he was hired by the school board in Henning and was the high school principal for 27 years, retiring in 1985. He enjoyed his students and was proud of the successes so many of them achieved.

Frank and Liz's first year in Henning brought the birth of their first child, Stephen. He was soon followed by Robert, Daniel and daughter, Lisa. Above all, Frank loved his family and, as his children grew, married and had children of their own, his happiness only grew. He was so very proud of his family and loved to have them with him whenever possible.

Along with being active with the school, Frank was a member of the Henning Lions Club, Wadena Elks Club, and the Ironton Legion Club. He was also on the Henning City Council for 12 years and was acting mayor for two years. In his retirement, Frank enjoyed gardening, golfing, traveling, crossword puzzles, reading and being with his family.

Frank is survived by his wife of 61 years, Liz; his sons, Steve, Bob (Tessa) and Dan (Vesla) Formanek; and daughter, Lisa (Mike) McMullen. He is also survived by his grandchildren, Sara, Kaila, Matt, Katie and Patrick; and numerous nieces, nephews and in-laws. He was preceded in death by his parents and sister, Rose Marie.