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Frank Taraskiewicz

May 6, 1944 - January 22, 2024
Detroit, MI



Friday, January 26, 2024
10:00 AM to 11:00 AM EST
Church of the Divine Child
1055 N. Silvery Lane
Dearborn, MI 48128

**At the request of the family - Please know masks will be provided and the family respectfully request the wearing of masks due to a family health issue - Thank you for your cooperation.**

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Funeral Mass

Friday, January 26, 2024
11:00 AM EST
Church of the Divine Child
1055 N. Silvery Lane
Dearborn, MI 48128
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At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.

Capuchin Soup Kitchen
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Life Story / Obituary


Frank Taraskiewicz passed away with family at his side on Monday, January 22, 2024, at the age of 79. He is survived by his wife of 59 years, Charlene (Ahern), and by eight daughters: Susan (Thaddeus) Stefanski, Carol Taraskiewicz, Patti (Mike) Schum, Mary (Ed) Kwilos, Jean (Julio Romero) Taraskiewicz, Cindy Taraskiewicz, Amy (Tim) Smith, and Chrissy (Mark) Marczewski. He is also survived by fourteen grandchildren: Teddy Stefanski, Leanna (Michael) Hermann, Alex Schum, Nat Rios, Tara Kwilos, Nora Nieman, Ethan Schum, Steven Rios, Oscar Nieman, Noah Marczewski, Isabela Romero, Justin Marczewski, Lio Romero, and Brendan Marczewski. His first great-grandchild, Grayson (Nieman) Jones, is on his way. Frank has one surviving sister, Annamarie Murphy. He was preceded in death by his parents, Frank and Bernice (Omilian) Taraskiewicz, and by his sister, Barbara Taraskiewicz.

Frank was a big man. When he was born on May 6, 1944, his parents probably never guessed that he would grow to a height of 6’4”.

Frank had a big heart to go along with his big build, and all of Frank’s big heart went to his family – his loving and loved wife, Charlene, his eight daughters, and his fourteen grandchildren.

He came from a loving family and was proud of his Polish heritage. He loved his mom’s Polish cooking and he loved to polka.

He gave his time, energy, strength, and skills to Detroit Diesel for 33 years, all in an effort to provide food, clothing, shelter, and a good education for his family. He was a dependable, knowledgeable, hard worker and he never complained about his workload. He supplemented his income with overtime work, even working through his vacation time.

He loved sports and found great joy in being a basketball coach, a softball coach, a volleyball and basketball referee, and a softball umpire. He was dedicated and knowledgeable in these roles. He was proud to have coached all of his daughters, and was well-regarded by others he coached. He was pleased to be able to teach a new generation.

These jobs as coach, referee, and umpire also served to supplement his income. Imagine running up and down a basketball court for several hours after putting in an eight-hour day at the factory. Imagine being out in the hot sun umpiring a softball game on a Saturday, when sleeping in was an alternative. He never considered these roles a sacrifice of time or energy, as they brought him so much joy.

Frank's work never squelched his spirit of adventure, though. He made family life colorful and vibrant with the playful attitude he maintained. He loved his all-of-a-kind family and always seemed to find fun things to do with his daughters. He taught them to ride a bike, to swim, to drive a car. Besides teaching them to play basketball and softball, he gave them an appreciation for local sports. He put up a pool in the yard and built a beautiful deck to go along with it. He took them on boat rides, first on the boat he inherited from his father and then on a newer, used boat that he remodeled. He even taught some of the girls to fish, a hobby he enjoyed and wanted to share with them. He biked with them and ran with them. Frank gave them a lifetime of happy memories.

As his daughters grew to become young women, Frank took great pride in their accomplishments.

When the grandkids came along, it was like starting over again: more games, more biking, more music and dancing, more fun. Time spent with the grandkids was rejuvenating and he treasured those moments. Hearing about all their activities and achievements gave him joy. He loved his grandkids, because they are truly grand.

Frank enjoyed spending time with his sisters as well as with his brothers-in-law and their wives. He counted some neighbors and some fellow referees among his good friends. Fishing trips with them were a common occurrence.

Frank’s love extended to his godchildren, Tim Murphy and Jenn Lammers, and all his nieces and nephews, and he had room in his heart as well for others outside his family: neighborhood kids, members of his basketball and softball teams, friends of his daughters.

Frank’s heart was filled with a love of God. He was an altar server into his high school years. He kept the faith his parents instilled in him, attending Mass regularly and joining the Knights of Columbus, and he made every effort to pass the faith on to his children as well. He openly and proudly professed his faith.

He routinely practiced random acts of kindness even before that became a thing. He shoveled walks for neighbors, assisted stranded motorists, offered rides to friends, and so on --- all without being asked. Whenever or wherever he saw a need, he responded. Even as a first-grader, Frank was big-hearted when he carried the books of his wife-to-be as they walked home from school together. He was big-hearted when he taught his newly-widowed mother-in-law to drive in her senior years, giving her an independence that kept her active and made her happy. That kindness was extended to her later in life as well when he offered to help care for her when she could no longer manage on her own.

With all the love that Frank gave away, he still had a heart full of love for his wife. That’s the magic of love. The more you give away, the more you have to give. Frank and his wife each loved the other more today than yesterday. They had good times together, traveling all over Michigan. They loved being by the water together, where she would often read while he swam or kayaked. They enjoyed many getaways to Port Huron and Lexington and loved discovering new places together. He loved to explore new areas on his bike or in his kayak. They loved dancing together.

Frank was an expert at fixing things (washers, dryers, bikes, and cars). He fixed everything that managed to break, but Charlene is not sure he can fix her broken heart now that he’s gone.

A memorial celebration of Frank's life will be held near a lake during warm weather. All are invited. The family will forward information as plans progress.