Francis D. Whelan, 80, passed away peacefully on Sunday, Nov. 15, 2009, in St. Charles. He was born Aug. 16, 1929, in Chicago, the son of Francis V. and Genevieve M. (nee Eck) Whelan.
He was united in marriage to Ruth M. Bartimes on Sept. 11, 1954, in Aurora.
Frank graduated from East Aurora High School with the class of 1947. He began his employment with Illinois Bell in June of 1945, and retired from the company after 38 years. Frank joined the U.S. Navy in September of 1952 and proudly served his country until July of 1954.
On Feb. 4, 1959, Frank joined the North Aurora Fire Department. He was promoted to the rank of Captain in 1963, and later became Chief in 1976. On Oct. 2, 1972, he was able to carry out his ultimate dream of saving a life. In 1973, Illinois Bell awarded Frank with the Theodore N. Vail Bronze Medal for noteworthy public service.
Frank greatly enjoyed being a fireman and was active in many capacities of fire protection service. He trained EMTs in first aid and CPR certification for the Red Cross, and served on the Kane County Fire Chiefs Association as both treasurer and president.
In 1989, Frank celebrated 30 years as a fireman with a â€œroastâ€ celebration hosted by the North Aurora Fire Department. He retired two years later as Chief and became Chief Emeritus after 32 years of service.
Outside of his work with the fire department and Illinois Bell, Frank served the community of North Aurora in the Lions Club (where he was on the board of directors), the Loyal Order of the Moose and the Telephone Pioneers. Frank was honored as the North Auroran of the Year for his countless hours of service to the community.
Frank is survived by his children, Terry Whelan of Kaneville and Linda (Dan) Revai of Plover, Wis.; his grandchildren, Heather, Nick and Danielle; a sister, Phyllis (Nick) Klein; and several nieces and nephews.
In addition to his parents, Frank is preceded in death by his beloved wife, Ruth; and daughter, Colleen Meggesin.
Visitation will be held on Thursday, Nov. 19, from 4 to 9 p.m. at Moss Family Funeral Home, 209 S. Batavia Ave. (Rt. 31), Batavia.
Funeral services will begin with prayers on Friday, Nov. 20, at the funeral home, before proceeding to Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church, 801 Oak St., North Aurora, for Mass at 10 a.m., with Rev. Jack Heraty serving as celebrant. Interment will follow in Resurrection Cemetery in Geneva Township.
For additional information, call the Moss Family Funeral Home in Batavia at (630) 879-7900 or visit www.mossfuneral.com