Frank B. Connolly, 92, of Epworth, passed away peacefully surrounded by his family Sunday, Dec. 22, 2019 at his home in Epworth.
Visitation for Frank was held from 2-8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 27, 2019 at Reiff Funeral Home in Epworth. Visitation continued after 9 a.m. Saturday at the funeral home.
Mass of Christian burial for Frank was held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 28, 2019 at St. Patrick Catholic Church in Epworth, with the Rev. Michael Schueller presiding. Lector was Helen Kennedy. Eucharistic Ministers were Leo Kennedy and Jack and Marilyn Hafeman. Placing of the pall was done by Tim Connolly, Larry Connolly, Dan Connolly, Deb Demuth, Laura Kluesner, Brenda Oberfoell and Kimberly Avenarius. Giftbearers were McKenna Avenarius and Kaidence Johnson. Burial was held at St. Patrick Cemetery in Epworth, with full military honors afforded by the Epworth American Legion John White Post #650.
Honorary pallbearers for Frank were Katie Johnson, Abby Connolly, April Connolly, Lauren Connolly and Angie Connolly.
Casketbearers for Frank were Dustin Demuth, Isaac Connolly, Carter Kluesner, Preston Johnson, Trae Avenarius and J.T. Connolly.
Frank was born Aug. 20, 1927 in Placid, son of William and Mary (Antoine) Connolly. He was the second youngest and last surviving of nine children. He received his education in Placid. He married Leola Ann Hanfelt Oct. 28, 1953. Together they had seven children. She preceded him Sept. 20, 1977. He then married Ardella S. Ernzen Jan. 13, 1979. She also preceded him November 8, 2005.
Frank served in the US Army from 1950 to 1952 during the Korean War. He is a member of the Epworth American Legion John White Post #650 and St. Patrick’s Church in Epworth. He was a carpenter for most of his life. He loved to go trout fishing, play euchre, garden and could make a good batch of horseradish.
He is survived by his seven children: Tim (Diane) Connolly, Larry “Rocky” (Connie) Connolly and Dan “Curly” (Stacie) Connolly, all of Epworth, Deb Demuth of Dubuque, Laura (Todd) Kluesner, Brenda (Marty) Oberfoell both of Epworth and Kimberly (Donnie) Avenarius of Dubuque; nine grandchildren, Katie Johnson, Abby, April and Lauren Connolly, Dustin Demuth, Angie Connolly and Carter Kluesner, Trae and McKenna Avenarius; five great-grandchildren, Kaidance and Preston Johnson, Isaac Connolly, Jamarius Connolly and Letty Ploessl. He is also survived by his seven step-children: Loras (Debbie) Ernzen, Theresa (Pat) Daly, Diane (Daryl) Kamp, Shirley (Terry) Burds, Gary (Kerry) Ernzen, Kenneth Ernzen and Karen (Ernie) Kluesner; step-daughter-in-law, Barb Ernzen; along with many step-grandchildren and step-great grandchildren; sisters and brothers-in-law, Betty Connolly, Darlene Conzett, Elaine Slack, Janice (Mick) Connolly, Eldon (Chris) Hanfelt, Nick (Doris) Wolf, Dick Dupont and Janette (Merlin) Brimeyer.
He is also preceded in death by his parents; grandson, Mitchell J. Kluesner; five brothers, Alvin, Merlin (Jean), Joseph (Ruth), Wilbert (Marion) and Marvin; three sisters, Marie (Martin) Huber, Loyola (Clem) Wagner and Lorraine Connolly; sisters and brothers-in-law, Mary (John) Boulting, Roy Slack, Ron Conzett, Rich Hanfelt, Joe (Florence) Hanfelt and Marlene Dupont; one step-son, Melvin Ernzen; two step-grandchildren, Daniel Ernzen and Thadeus Ernzen; three nieces, Judy Tigges, Joanie Lawler and Carol Connolly; and a nephew, Steve Connolly.
The Connolly family wishes to express gratitude to Hospice of Dubuque, especially Tammy, Heather and Amy and to Dr. Brian Sullivan for their wonderful care of Frank.