Frank E. Fagundes, a dedicated teacher and world traveler, passed away in the early morning of Friday, December 7, 2012, at the age of 69.
Frank (also known as Frankie to family) was born at home in the Lemoore area. He grew up in the communities of both Riverdale and Lemoore. Frank attended local schools, including San Jose School (the grammar school prior to Island School), Lemoore High School, West Hills College and Fresno State College, where he obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree.
Following graduation from college, he started teaching at Riverdale Elementary School where he taught for 39 years before retiring in June of 2006. He was a very dedicated teacher and always went the extra mile for his students. It was not uncommon for him to also help those students who missed school due to illness or those who needed help grasping certain subjects by visiting their homes and meeting their parents.
Many of his past students fondly remember him as a teacher who made his subjects, especially science, interesting because of his hands-on approach. Frank would go beyond just reading out of the book. He conducted some very interesting experiments over the years, which captured his students' attention and helped them grasp the subject at hand.
During each year, Frank would also start planning his next exotic trip for his upcoming summer vacation. His trips would generally start one week after the school year ended and last until about a week before school started again in the fall. During his 40+ years of travel, he visited almost every continent and approximately 150 countries around the globe. He especially enjoyed visiting parts of Africa, China and the U.S.S.R. His travels over the years are documented on both slides and video. Frank also collected many unusual and unique souvenirs from his trips over his lifetime.
Frank is survived by his father, Frank A. Fagundes of Lemoore, sister Gerry Dooley and husband Dennis of Angels Camp, brother Joe Fagundes and wife Dodie of Morro Bay, and youngest brother Raymond Fagundes of Lemoore; nieces Denise Bailey (and husband John) of San Andreas, Tanya Ehlert (and husband Greg) of Greeley, Colorado, and Julie Fagundes of Huntington Beach; great-nephew Anthony Bailey, great-niece Elyse Bailey, great-nephew Peter Bailey, all of San Andreas, and great-nephews Nathan, Jacob and Timothy Ehlert of Greeley, Colorado. He is also survived by several aunts, uncles, and numerous cousins. Frank was preceded in death by his mother, Theresa Fagundes.
Visitation will be Wednesday from 4-7 p.m. at Phipps-Dale Funeral Chapel. Recitation of the Rosary will be held at St. Peter's Catholic Church in Lemoore at 9:30 a.m., followed by mass at 10:00 a.m. on Thursday, December 13th. Graveside services will be held at the Lemoore Cemetery following mass. Remembrances may be made to the St. Peter's Church Building Fund, 870 N. Lemoore Avenue, Lemoore, CA 93245.