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1928 Francis 2023

Francis Jerome McDonald

December 16, 1928 — November 27, 2023

Yankton

Francis J. McDonald passed away Monday evening, November 27, 2023, at the Pioneer Memorial Hospice facility in Viborg SD. 

Memorial Mass of Christian Burial will be 10:30 AM on December 7, 2023, at St. Benedict Catholic Church in Yankton, South Dakota, with Reverend Tom Anderson officiating.  Burial will be in the Sacred Heart Cemetery in Yankton, South Dakota.  The family will receive friends from 5:00 to 7:00 PM on December 6, 2023, at the Wintz & Ray Funeral Home in Yankton, South Dakota with a vigil service and rosary at 7:00 PM.

Francis J.  McDonald was the eldest of ten children of Francis P. (Frank) and Agnes (Nipp) McDonald, born December 16, 1928 in Yankton SD.  He grew up in the Mayfield area and attended Cornbelt School District 71 and Irene High School.   

Francis farmed with his parents until he was twenty-four.  He married Patricia Kohlscheen on February 12, 1952 and they farmed just a half a mile south of the McDonald place.  In 1960 he took on a job as the farm manager for the Benedictine Sisters at Sacred Heart Monastery and moved his family of Pat and five boys to the outskirts of Yankton.  By 1968 the Sisters had been advised to get out of the farming operations, so Francis worked as the head groundskeeper of the monastery and Mount Marty as well as picking up part-time work across SD Highway 52 at the Yankton Medical Clinic. . He left Mount Marty and the monastery in 1983 and worked for the Yankton Medical Clinic full time until his retirement.  He also worked for Hy-Vee part-time after retiring from the Clinic.

In 1968, Pat and Francis bought a house and moved their eight children into Yankton proper.  Francis picked up a number of do-it-yourself construction skills by working with Fred Peterka at Mount Marty and he made use of those skills by picking up side projects.  He was always finding work that needed to get done, and he had an army of seven boys to help him.  Francis would team up with his brother, Duane, or his old farm neighbor, Leon Slowey, and grab two or three boys and take on some project.  Cutting and rolling sod, cutting down and splitting firewood, farming a boy out to his brother, Don, to help him castrate pigs or chop weeds in the bean fields, or help build a brother's barn -- Francis was always working, and he was fussy -- all you had to do was look at the lawns he maintained at Mount Marty and the Medical Clinic -- they were manicured, not just mowed.

Francis and Pat had six of their eight children serve in the US Armed Forces.  At least one of them serving actively every year from 1972 until 2012.  They became empty nesters in 1982. Pat passed away in April 2021.  
Francis is survived by his lone daughter, Teresa (Terri) Jackson of Sioux City IA, six sons, Michael (Deb) of Sioux Falls, Marty (Jan) of Sioux Falls, Patrick (Vicki) of Volin, Brian of Lincoln NE, Jerome of Council Bluffs IA, and Kevin of Vermillion.  He is also survived by four brothers, Donald (Betty) of Yankton, Duane (Illraye) of Yankton, Darrell (Helen) of Irene, Jerald (Vicki) Irene, and two sisters, Elaine Heirigs of Yankton, and Mary (Harold) Drotzman of Sargent Bluffs IA.  Francis and Pat have sixteen grandchildren and nine great grandchildren.  They also have extended survivors that include the Todd and Audra Hecht family of Yankton, the John and Laurie Jackson family of Sioux City, Theresa Jackson of Sioux City,  and the Bradley and Vicki Olsen family of Firth NE.  

He is preceded in death by his parents, his sisters Delores Hauger, Catherine Hunhoff, and Lois Hauger, his son Gary (Karen), his grandson, Joshua McDonald, numerous aunts, uncles and cousins, and the menagerie of birds, cats, dogs, squirrels and a skunk that were welcomed at his home.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Francis Jerome McDonald, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Wednesday, December 6, 2023

5:00 - 7:00 pm

Wintz & Ray Funeral Home – Yankton

2901 Douglas Ave, Yankton, SD 57078

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Rosary and Vigil Service

Wednesday, December 6, 2023

Starts at 7:00 pm

Wintz & Ray Funeral Home – Yankton

2901 Douglas Ave, Yankton, SD 57078

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Mass

Thursday, December 7, 2023

Starts at 10:30 am

St. Benedict Catholic Church

1500 St Benedict Dr, Yankton, SD 57078

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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