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Wendell G. Franke, 74

Wendell G. Franke, age 74, of Eagan (formally of Farmington), passed away peacefully at his home on March 25, 2009.

Wendell was born Sept.14, 1934 in Erie, N.D. to Earle and Irene Franke. Wendell served in the U.S. Army and fought in the Korean War. He graduated from Concordia College, Moorhead, Minn. From there he taught and coached at Westbrook High School in southwestern Minnesota.

Wendell came to Farmington in 1959 and after seven years of coaching basketball, he stepped down to assume management of the school's athletic programs. Wendell was best known for the many changes he made as athletic director. He changed the girl's athletic Association to varsity sports as well as changing the conference affiliation from the Missota to the Tri-Metro and his proposal to allow conference champions automatically qualify for the playoffs. These accomplishments and passion for sports and athletes led to his recognition of many honors. Wendell was inducted into the Minnesota Athletic Directors Hall of Fame as well as The Farmington High School Hall of Fame. After retirement Wendell worked at the Minneapolis International Airport as a TSA security agent. His summers were spent working as a crop insurance adjustor.

Wendell is preceded in death by his parents and his brother, Marlyn.

He will be dearly missed by his wife of 23 years, Betty, and his children and step-children, Curt Franke, Billy (Barb) Franke, Jill Franke, Mike Flanagan, Patty (Jeff) Bowen, Jeff (Barb) Flanagan, Tom (Kerri) Flanagan, Sheryl (Pat) Klinkhammer, Sandy (Al) Tachovsky; 18 grandchildren; eight great-grandchildren; and sister, Jean Hill.

A funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. Thursday, April 2, 2009 at Mount Olivet Lutheran Church, 5025 Knox Ave S, Minneapolis, Minn. Visitation will be Wednesday from 4-8 p.m. at the White Funeral Home, 901 Third St., Farmington and one hour prior to service at church.

Interment will be at Fort Snelling National Cemetery.

Thank you to all who blessed Wendell with your tender care. In lieu of flowers, memorials preferred.

White Funeral Home, Farmington, 651-463-7374