In Memory of

Frank

R.

Kopenski

Sr.

Obituary for Frank R. Kopenski Sr.

Frank “Chub” Kopenski the “Potent Pole” passed away peacefully with family, April 11, 2022. He was 92 years old, and in a storybook ending, passed away on his late wife’s 92nd birthday. Frank taught American History to thousands of young men, for 37 years at Marquette University High School (MUHS) in Milwaukee, WI., from 1955 to his retirement in 1991. Best remembered for his muskrat pelt skinning demonstrations in front of class and fair but hard-nosed, no-nonsense demeanor. As a coach at MUHS from 1955 to 1971, his Hilltoppers earned seven Catholic Conference championships in both football and track with five track team State Championships. He served as Director of Athletics after his coaching career. In 1977 he was honored as the “Man of the Year” by the Wisconsin Independent Schools Athletic Association (W.I.S.A.A.). In his administrative role with W.I.S.A.A. he was chiefly responsible for creating the football and soccer state playoff championships. As an athlete at Iron River High School in the Michigan Upper Peninsula from 1945 to 1948, he became the first athlete to win major letters in four sports. He once outdueled the legendary Eddie Feigner “The King and his Court” four-man traveling softball team. In 1947 as a senior, the Detroit Free Press selected Frank as the all-state running back for all of Michigan, at a time when there was only one class size. The all-state honor resulted in scholarship offers from the University of Michigan, Marquette University as well as numerous other Universities. Frank was the starting fullback for three years at Marquette University and the leading ground gainer as a junior. He graduated from Marquette in 1952 with a BA degree in History. Frank was a veteran of the Korean War and was a football player/coach with the army in Germany. In 1983 Frank was inducted into the U.P. Sports Hall of Fame, in 1991 he was inducted in the Wisconsin Track Coaches Association Hall of Fame and in 1993 Frank was inducted into the MUHS Athletic Hall of Fame. He was a long-time member of the St. Sebastian’s Catholic Church Congregation. Preceded in death by his wife of 61 years, Josephine, his brother Martin and grandson Jesse. Survived by his sister Barbara, brother Donald, four children Kay (Dan), Kris (Dave), Frank, and Mark (Carla) and four grandchildren Aubrey, Claudia, Maxwell, and Natalie. Also survived by other relatives and friends. There will be no services.