1945 – 2019
Frank Gornik of Swan River, Manitoba passed away suddenly Saturday, November 30, 2019. Frank was born October 23, 1945 in Birch River, Manitoba to Marko and Barbara (Radelija) Gornik. He was the second youngest of seven children. Frank grew up on the family farm near Bellsite, Manitoba and attended Glover Creek School.
After completing school, Frank worked in Winnipeg for a short time before moving to Thompson where he was employed by Midwest Diamond Drilling Company. After Thompson, Frank and his brother, Billy, bought a taxi business and ran Gornik’s Taxi providing service to the Birch River area for several years. It was during this time in 1975 that Frank met the love of his life, Betty Bardwell and her three children; Shelly, Donna, and Guy. They were together for 44 years. After selling the taxi business, Frank worked for Pat Hall hauling wood until he took a job with United Grain Growers. He was employed with UGG until his retirement and he took great pride in serving the farmers in the area. Frank liked working with Terry, Mervin, Candance, and Cora; the friendships made and the many “happy hours” enjoyed. In 2004 Frank and Betty moved to Swan River, where they were currently residing.
Frankie and Betty loved Steeprock Lake. Everyone knew that in the summer months that’s where they could be found. They enjoyed over 40 years of camping; first with their children, and then later with their grandchildren. The highlight of their summer was spending time with family and friends and visiting around a campfire. He also enjoyed the 4:00 a.m. fishing trips with his brother, Johnny.
Over the years, Frankie coached hockey in Birch River and then later drove the hockey bus for the Swan River team that Guy played on. He enjoyed watching sports and participating in hockey pools with his brother, Billy. Frankie enjoyed playing cards and was a competitive cribbage player. He and Betty liked spending time at the Seniors’ Centre. They enjoyed travelling and especially enjoyed their trips to Nashville and British Columbia, one summer even taking Tanya, Brandi and Nikki with them to the coast. Frankie looked forward to his regular phone conversations with his sisters, Mary and Katie, and his brother, Billy, and visits with his sister in law Shirley.
Frankie often told stories of the people he’d met over the years and the lifelong friendships he’d made.
Frankie was a devoted husband, father, and poppa who was always there for everyone who knew him. Over the last few years his strength was tested but he remained resilient throughout. He will be dearly missed by all.
Frank is survived by his wife, Betty; children, Shelly (Laurrie) Graham, Donna (Bud) Schaff, Guy (Kari) Bardwell; grandchildren, Tanya (Jay) Harrison, Brandi (Rick) Harkin, Nikki Harkin, Jensen Bardwell, Peyton Bardwell, Ryan Bardwell; twelve great grandchildren; sister, Katie LeBlanc, Mary Bailey; brother, Billy (Beverly) Gornik; some special brothers and sisters in law; and numerous nieces and nephews.
Frank is predeceased by his parents, Marko and Barbara Gornik; his brothers, Mike Gornik, Joe Gornik, and Johnny Gornik.
The funeral service was held from the Birch River Legion Hall on Saturday, December 7, 2019 at 2:00 p.m. with Pastor Ferlin Abrahamson officiating. Interment followed in the Crandell Cemetery, Birch River, Manitoba.
If friends so desire, donations in Frank’s memory may be made to the Swan Valley Health Facilities Foundation.
Swan Valley Funeral Services
363 Kelsey Trail, Swan River, Manitoba
To send flowers to Frank's family, please visit our floral section.
Swan Valley Health Facilities Foundation Inc.
Box 1450, Swan River MB R0L 1Z0