Frank Austin Buchert passed away September 27, 2021 at home under Hospice Care with his family by his side. Frank was born August 22, 1934 son of Frank Jesse and Edith Mae Bacon Buchert. Home was the small town of Richmond, Illinois. He graduated from Richmond Burton High School and Bradley University, Peoria, Illinois where he majored in Industrial Arts, having been inspired by his high school teacher to pursue a college degree.
He joined the faculty of South Haven High School teaching Auto Mechanics. His tenure was short lived, having been drafted into the Army. Superintendent Fred Norlin requested a delay in his induction so he could finish teaching the 1956-57 school year. During that first year he met his future wife Mary A. Hensley whom he married November 23, 1957 after completing Basic and Advanced Training at Ft. Hood, Texas. Thence to Nuremberg, Germany he served two years with occupation troops. His wife, Mary, joined him June of 1958 and they traveled in Germany,
France, Rome, Italy, and Brussels, Belgium to the World's Fair. Following Frank's tour of duty, they returned to South Haven and both rejoined the faculty at South Haven Public Schools. Frank taught Driver Education, High School Auto Shop, and over 30 years in Middle School Shop classes - including mechanical drawing and completing projects in wood, metal, plastics, and leather. He was instrumental in developing the curriculum that included both boys and girls in Industrial Arts and Home Economics classes. Many students have expressed their appreciation over the years for the life skills Mr. Buchert taught them.
Frank and Mary were blessed with four children, Kathy, Patty, Sue, and Sean. A loving son, husband, and father, he assisted his Dad in finishing a small cottage on the Lower Eau Clair Lake, in Gordon, Wisconsin. After his father passed away, he continued helping his mom go to the cottage and later she lived with his family until she entered a South Haven nursing home until her death. The purchase of a travel trailer made it possible to travel west to Yellowstone National Park, Disney, California, Canada, as well as, regular trips to visit relatives in North and South Carolina, Illinois, and spend many relaxing weekends in Ludington State Park.
After retirement, Frank and Mary spent summers at the cottage in Wisconsin and found great fellowship in the Barnes Community Church, including a regular weekly small group Bible study. He loved to take kids, grandkids, great-grandkids, friends and anyone who enjoyed fishing, and grab a pole to go for a big Walleye, a good Northern Pike, a "mess" of blue gills, or a big old bass.
Winters were spent in Dunedin, Florida where they were active in the Kirk of Dunedin another wonderful congregation full of great friends, fellowship, "parables" on Wednesday morning, and worship on Sunday.
Frank was a 62 year active member in the First Baptist Church of South Haven and demonstrated his deep abiding faith in his daily life. He was involved with the Masons and Shrine Club. His involvement with the Shriners made Shriner's Children's Hospital a favorite charity.
Frank was preceded in death by his grandparents, parents, Frank Jesse and Edith Mae Bacon Buchert, twelve Aunts and Uncles and their spouses, cousins, his brother-in-law Edward Waspi, and other relatives.
He is survived by his wife Mary, children Kathy and Bob Brown, Patty and Curt Bales, Sue Cravens and Jimmy Holmes, Sean and Amber Buchert, grandchildren Jamie and Nichole French, Shannon and Misti French, Rory and Lindsey Cravens, Jeff and Shannon Brown, and 20 great-grandchildren, his sister, Betty Jayne Waspi, nieces and nephews Barbara and Wayne Japp, Charles Waspi and Donna Lakomiak, De and Mike Nieciecki, and many grand and great-grand nieces and nephews.
Visitation will be at the Filbrandt Funeral Home on Monday October 4, 2021 from 5:00 - 7:00 p.m. A memorial service will be held in the First Baptist Church on Tuesday, October 5, 2021 at 12:00 p.m. with a visitation preceding the service at 11:00 a.m. Memorials may be made to First Baptist Church, Barnes Community Church, Kirk of Dunedin, or your local Hospice.
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