August 13, 1933 – January 25, 2020
It is with heavy hearts that our family shares that Frank left this world to join his son John in Heaven after a short, courageous battle with bone cancer. He passed away peacefully with his wife Betty of 60 years and his children by his side.
Frank was born in Brandon, Manitoba to Joseph and Antonina Zalot. While his parents worked on the farm, Frank roamed the fields with his dog and cared for his younger sister Shirley. The family eventually moved to New Westminster where his youngest sister Jenny was born. Frank was working in the warehouse at Edward Lipsett commercial fishery supply when he met Betty, and a love story began.
Frank was 22 and Betty was 18. Frank was a tall, handsome young man, considered a catch and adored by the girls in the office. But he only had eyes for the girl with the beautiful smile who didn’t pay him any attention. Their first true date was at the company fishing derby, when Frank cleverly maneuvered his way into driving Betty home. He immediately charmed her parents, and the courtship began. They were married on June 6, 1959.
Frank and Betty’s first home was in Langley, where their four children were born. In 1968 they moved to Matsqui Prairie and purchased Betty’s family dairy farm. The farm grew to be the nucleus of the family for aunts, uncles, cousins, friends and strangers who became family. It had a semi-circle driveway, symbolic of the constant circle of people who came to visit or stay. Frank and Betty shared the gift of their home and farm with everyone.
Frank and Betty retired in 1993 and moved to their current home in Abbotsford and enjoyed 27 years of retirement together. They then purchased a fishing cabin on Watch Lake in the Cariboo, which quickly became the next nucleus for family and friends. Frank called the cabin the “ugly bugly” of the lake and loved every bit of it. Footsteps from a dock and a boat to go fishing in, it truly was his happy place.
Frank loved to dance and had a sense of humour that made you belly laugh or shake your head and smile. He shared his humour and his homemade pickles, jams, salsa and apple pies with both his family and the special friends he made all over town, particularly at city hall, the local MLA’s office, dentist, pharmacist, grocery store and bank.
Frank will be missed by his wife Betty, sister Shirley (Doug), sister Jenny, son John (predeceased), daughter Christine (Colin), Lauren, Steven and Bryan, daughter Anne-Marie (Syd), Ashley, Dorothy (Devin), Tesla and Alexander, son David (Cora), Benjamin (Kelsey), Adam (Samantha), Brantley.
The Celebration of life will be on Saturday, February 15th at 2 pm at Matsqui Community Hall, 33676 St. Olaf Ave.
We will be honouring this wonderful man in a celebration we’re calling “Everything Frank”. Everything will be a reflection of who he was and all the personal touches he gave in decorating our lives.
Frank gave loonies and toonies to all his grandchildren in their early years and continued the tradition with his great grandchildren. In honour of this tradition, please join us in bringing loonies and toonies that we will donate on Frank’s behalf to our local Cancer Agency and Hospice. Frank was adamant in his last days that we give generously for the outstanding care he received at Holmberg House at the Abbotsford Hospice.
I am with you always