Frank Fifo was born on March 31, 1936, in Red Jacket, West Virginia, and died in Ely, Minnesota on Friday, January 22, 2021.
While some retirees spend their time on the golf course or playing cards, Frank spent his wisdom years making candy, slaying walleye, volunteering in his community, and tending to his family.
Frank made the holiday season even brighter with his edible gifting. He was renowned for his delicately dipped chocolate truffles, chocolate-covered boozy cherries, hand-crafted walnut caramels, and peanut butter bonbons. However, it was Frank’s cashew brittle that earned his acclaimed reputation as the Candy Man. Candy making was a labor of love and was his way of giving back to the community.
Frank took his fishing seriously – particularly walleye fishing. Even as a master angler, Frank knew that the walleye is an elusive and tricky fish to catch. Regardless, he could be two minutes into a morning of fishing and land a fat 22-inch walleye. A legendary walleye fisherman, he relished in teaching others the art of catching fish.
His main force in life was to take care of his family, especially his wife, Retta.
He did a damn good job.
Frank met the love of his life Retta - his wife, his best friend, his soulmate - on a blind date on December 26, 1959, when they went to see Soloman and Sheba at the Fox Theater in Detroit, Michigan. Within days they knew they would marry. Soon, Frank sold his ’55 Chevy so he could buy his bride-to-be’s wedding ring. June 17, 2021 would have marked the couple’s 60th wedding anniversary.
Frank served in Korea in the Signal Corpe on the DMZ line from 1960-1961.
Frank developed the First Responder program for Fall Lake Township and was a volunteer for East Range Hospice for nearly twenty years.
Frank will be lovingly remembered by his wife Retta, three children Kevin (Jean), Chris (Paula) and Yvonne, grandchildren Dalia and Jaxen, siblings Manuel and Delores, along with many nieces and nephews.
He was a simple but complicated man whose motto was simple. “Attitude. Attitude. Attitude.” He provided a glowing example of how to live life through a commitment to personal and professional excellence.
This spring, when the ice is out and the walleye are biting, family and friends will gather at their home on Farm Lake to celebrate the life of Frank Fifo and pilfer through his fishing lures.
Family arrangements have been entrusted to Kerntz Funeral Home of Ely.
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