Michael Franks (1952 - 2018)

Obituary
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Michael W. Franks, 65, passed into the arms of the Lord from the loving arms of Elena, his wife of 43 years, on Jan. 9, 2018, at home in Anchorage, Alaska.
His favorite quote was: "Never give up on life." He honored this philosophy each day of his life and instilled this principle in the lives of his loving family, friends and community. Mike's career involved constructing buildings and structures, but his life was about building people. His material accomplishments are a tribute to his creativity and dedication, but his legacy will persist through the success of others due to his ongoing encouragement and support. Many of his projects were schools within which thousands of Alaska students were educated, but he was a true teacher and mentor. He believed in the importance of education and life-long learning to enrich the lives of others along with the lessons learned from a rich lifetime of experience where persisting through challenges was simply another opportunity to learn and grow.
Michael W. Franks, a builder of lives: brick by brick, person by person, on a solid foundation of inspiration, persistence and lasting, loving impact.
After marrying the love of his life, Elena Tikiun of Bethel, Alaska, and earning a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering, Mike served an Engineer building the trans-Alaska pipeline, a Project Manager for the Lower Kuskokwim School District (LKSD), and a Construction Manager for the Anchorage School District. Notable accomplishments are the simultaneous construction of 16 high schools in remote villages of the LKSD. Elementary schools at North Star, Kincaid, Kasuun, Lake Hood and Tyson were completed under his supervision in 1996. During his tenure as the Construction Manager for ASD, he supervised projects at all 110 schools in the district until his retirement in 2005.
Mike enjoyed commercial fishing in Bristol Bay, Alaska, from 1982 until 2015, and partnering with his son, MJ, who ultimately became the fishing captain on the Kusko Gayle. His joy in life entailed watching his grandsons, Grayson and Matthew, grow, laugh and become kind boys. He lived to be on the water with his family aboard the Kusko Gayle and Silver Surfer.
Mike battled with kidney failure from 2004 and was on dialysis until he received a transplant in 2009. The transplant lasted for three years and he had to go back on dialysis until his death.
Mike is survived by Elena T. Franks; Michael J. (Tiffany) Franks and Grayson of Duluth, Minn.; Megayla Y. (William) Cartwright and little Matthew. He is also survived by James W. Franks; Randy L. (Diane) Franks; Phyllis (Louie) Jarret; Mary (Louie) Crew; Albert Tikiun; Jim (Brenda) Tikiun; Ben Crew; and a multitude of beloved nieces and nephews. He will be greatly missed.
The Celebration of Life for Michael W. Franks will be on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018, at the First Covenant Church, 1145 C Street in Anchorage. Service starts at 11 a.m., followed by a Potluck at 12 p.m. Please bring your favorite dish to share, along with your favorite stories.
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Evergreen Memorial Chapel - Anchorage
737 E Street
Anchorage, AK 99501
907-279-5477
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Published in Anchorage Daily News on Jan. 11, 2018