Ernst Alois Frank passed away peacefully at the age of 94 on October 30, 2023, with Karin, his loving wife of 71 years, at his side and surrounded by his children and their spouses.
Born in Villach, Austria in 1929, Ernie lived through the Depression and World War II and emerged with resilience, optimism and a strength of spirit that he carried with him throughout his long life. He married Karin, the love of his life, in July 1952. A year later they immigrated to Canada with virtually no money and little knowledge of English, but with a fierce determination to succeed. Ernie worked multiple jobs for several years until he landed a position at Canadian Tire where he had a successful career for 38 years, retiring from a management position at the company’s head office in 1993.
In the face of adversity Ernie always tried harder, kept going and never gave up. He was a champion boxer in Austria and continued fighting in Toronto for several more years after he and Karin came to Canada. He enjoyed pursuing athletics throughout his life, finishing the Toronto Marathon in 1983 at the age of 54, riding a bike into his 80s, and canoeing and walking along the lake in his 90s. He had a terrific sense of humour and was always up for any adventure. He loved his wife and family with all of his heart and was enormously proud of his children and grandchildren.
Ernie is survived by his wife Karin, sons Brian (Claire) and Jeffrey (Julie), and daughter Anita Forgie (Ken) as well as his sister Toni and family in Austria. He was predeceased by his daughter Jenny. He leaves behind eight grandchildren: Brendan (Rosie), Robbie (Emma) Neil, Tristan, Liam, Declan, Amanda and Erin; and two great grandsons, Rhys and Jamie. He was a much loved presence in their lives and they will all miss him tremendously.