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Frank Lugar

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Frank Lugar

Place of birth: Johnstown, PA

Religious affiliation: None/Unknown

Frank can not be defined by birth and death dates, schools, or survivors. He was an inspiration to many people. In the face of great adversity, he persevered with graceful tenacity. He lived with courage and dignity. He thrived in community.

Frank was born On Memorial Day in 1949. His dad told him those Memorial day parades were for his birthday. His birthday parades remained a joke through his life, although Memorial Day became one of the Monday holidays. This year, his birthday was on Memorial Day!

Frank had many hobbies including politics, photography, hunting, woodworking, hiking, and bicycle riding. His interest in border collies brought Max, Ned and Jaff into our lives. Max worked diligently with Frank to create the website MaxTheBorderCollie.com. Together they scouted out bike trails that Frank filmed and Max narrated. Both Frank and Max loved Duluth, Lake Superior and the north shore. Max preceded Frank in death leaving the space open for two more border collies. We had a favorite cabin that we rented on the shore of Lake Superior in Little Marais, MN. Frank loved boats and aspired to be a sailor. We even rented a houseboat on Rainy Lake one year for a vacation.

We moved to Spring Valley, WI in 2004 when Frank was very sick with pulmonary hypertension and we could not imagine he would live long. Jaff, his special dog, took responsibility for Frank’s health seriously. He laid with Frank and entrained with him. The land reminded Frank of his beloved Johnstown, Pennsylvania. He loved the property and grounded in nature in a way that revitalized him. Jaff spent hours running laps around the house always carrying something in his mouth, preferably a sappling. Frank’s health improved and he engaged in day to day life building community and learning new skills. He never stopped learning. Jaff never stopped managing Frank’s golf cart.

Frank’s sense of humor and interest in people expanded his circle of friends. When I asked him if we should host a party this year, he replied, “Yes, I’d like to attend my own funeral.” We held his funeral on June 25th with him in animated attendance. He never appreciated how much he inspired people. Instead, he remained a humble man throughout his life. His Caring Bridge site drew more than 500 visits over the last three months of his life.

While we have no children, my sister Jane’s daughters Amanda and Stephanie became Frank’s “daughters.” Stephanie asked him to walk her down the aisle when she married Ben three years ago. Amanda and Frank had a very special relationship. Amanda, Steph and Ben visited Frank the day he died. It meant a great deal to me and I believe he knew they were there.

He “beat” the scourge of pulmonary hypertension although he still technically had it. His lungs and heart were better than they had been in years. We were able to wean him from his IV medication without incident. It was cancer that defeated his body. He lived against all odds and all predictions of impending death. On August 20th, he died as he lived, quietly in his hospital room with me by his side. The care he received in the hospital in Baldwin was extraordinary. The hospital, clinic, rehab center and fitness center people were an important part of his community. The hospital focused on our unique needs and exceeded our expectations as every need we identified was met with genuine concern for him as a person.

He is survived by me, his wife of 40 years, his special dog Jaff, his sister and her family as well as my six Myers siblings and their families and many, many friends. He died with grace and dignity. His spirit lives on. He will not be forgotten. Since we held his funeral in June, there will not be a service now. I anticipate some sort of gathering in the future, possibly around the first anniversary of his death. It would be fun to sit around and share Frank stories with friends with potluck food. After his funeral, he said he wanted to make it an annual event. Anybody interested in a gathering?

Frank requests that memorials be sent to Share Foundation, http://www.sharefoundation.org He knew and was inspired by Father Blaney as a young adult in Indiana. The work of Share benefits the handicapped. 

Funeral Notice Detail

A Memorial Service will be held at

Martel Town Hall

220th st

Spring Valley , WI 54767

On: Jun 25, 2016 — At: 01:00 PM

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