April 19, 1923 - May 16, 2013
Frank was born on April 19, 1923, in Hoquiam to Frank Sr. and Agnes (Silc) Wessel. The family lived in Hoquiam then moved to a 20 acre farm on the upper Satsop. Frank loved the outdoors. He hunted and fished most of his life. Franks grandson, Cory Monaghan and friend, Kurt Meier took Frank on what would be his last fishing trip. A reporter from the Olympian interviewed the trio that spring day on Summit Lake. Great-grandson, Cody Monaghan represented the fourth family generation. Frank graduated in 1941 from Elma High School. Dear friend and fellow classmate, Jean Anderson helped Frank organize the latest class reunions until the decision was made to discontinue them. Frank also attended Central Washington College in Ellensburg, graduating with his Bachelor’s Degree in Teaching in the mid ‘60s. Frank had many jobs, from working in the woods, teaching at the Brady School and becoming a Seattle Police Officer. He also worked at Boeing before going back to teaching. He taught for the Tahoma School District, first at the Junior High, then the High School and finishing at the Grade School level. At the Grade School he taught Special Education and helped his students with the Special Olympics. Frank was also a King County Deputy Sheriff and a Reserve Officer for many years. His longtime patrol partner, Vic Charles, preceded Frank in death. Vic was a towering man of 6 feet, 7 inches, while Frank had a smaller stature at 5 feet, 8 inches. The two were also known as “Tweety and Maldoon”, look alikes from the TV show “Car 54, Where are You?” The two vacationed together, fished, were in the Lions Club and enjoyed a great friendship, both in the squad car and in life.
Frank enjoyed being involved in many organizations. He was involved with the neighborhood Community Clubs where they resided, the Lions Club, the Sheriff’s Department and played on a baseball team with the Seattle Public Market team in the early ‘70s.
Frank and Margarette (Skeen) were married on January 8, 1954. They celebrated 59 years together. They were never apart except for hunting trips, Frank’s return to college and his recent decline in health. Margarette now resides with daughter, Deborah Bebich. Deborah had been involved with her parents affairs for many years.
Recently grandson, Derik Monaghan took his daughter, Payton, fishing with an old flatfish lure grandpa Frank had given to him many years ago. Payton caught the most fish and a lunker of a Rainbow trout at 18”, weighing 2.75lbs. While netting the fish the old rusy hook fell off leaving the flatfish unattached to the fish. They landed the fish safely in the boat but for all logic, it should have gotten away.
Frank felt fortunate to witness milestones with his grandchildren, from graduating from high school, success and seeing his great-grandchildren come into the world. He always said, “I didn’t think I’d live long enough to see this day.” Frank never met a stranger and he was known for his Gift of Gab. He valued his family and friends.
Frank is survived by his wife, Margarette; sister, Mary Patton and her family. Mary held an annual Wessel Family Gathering celebrated on Easter Day. Frank and Mary were close and stayed in touch.
Four children also survive Frank, Tom Rose and his family, including children and grandchildren in Keno, Ore., who stayed in touch on an almost daily basis and welcomed Frank, Margarette and Deborah on the last train trip to their home; Deborah Bebich and her family, including children and grandchildren; Ron of Malo, Wash. and his family including children and grandchildren; Dan of Aberdeen and his family including children and grandchildren; a special nephew, Joe Patton, who always made time to visit and do thoughtful things for Frank; granddaughter, Britt Monaghan for having Grandpa and Grandma come and stay with her and her love and caring; dear friends, Don and Delores Bies, Don is the lone survivor of the longtime hunting party; friends, Willie, Moe and Jack Levy and all the good neighbors from Forest View.
Frank was preceded in death by his parents; sister, Amelia Reclite; niece, Micky Patton; and great-granddaughter, Jamie Monaghan.
The family wished to acknowledge and thank Dr. Ki Shin and the staffs at St. Peter’s Providence, Summit Pacific Medical Center, Sunbridge Health and Rehab and Grays Harbor Community Hospital.
At Frank’s request there will be no service. Whiteside of Elma handled the arrangements. In lieu of donations, make it possible for a child to go fishing.