Dr. Noel Francisco, 95, of Backus, Minnesota, formerly of Superior, Wisconsin, passed away March 18, 2019, at Good Samaritan Society Elmwood House - Brainerd.
Noel was born in Findlay, Illinois on August 7, 1923, to Rev. Cecil E. Francisco and Lois G. (Melcher) Francisco. He married Barbara M. Youngs in August of 1948. They celebrated 62 years of marriage in 2010.
Noel and Barbara were longtime residents of Superior before moving to their beloved summer home at Ponto Lake in Backus in the early 1990s.
Noel earned A.B., M.A., and B.D. degrees from Drake University and his Ph.D. from Duke University. He taught sociology at Albion College, Millikin University, Lycoming College and the University of Wisconsin-Superior. He was professor emeritus of sociology at UW-Superior after retiring in 1988.
In addition to teaching, Noel directed the Lycoming Center for the Study of Democratic Living and for 12 years served as president of the board of directors of the Duluth Bethel Society. Noel attended the Brainerd Friends Meeting and enjoyed the Quaker fellowship. He authored two books in his retirement: "No Grazing for Sacred Cows" and "Deeply Flow the Love Currents."
Noel was never one to pass up a good dessert, a spirited discussion or a raucous game with his family. He will be dearly missed.
Noel is survived by his son Lee (Lori) Francisco, of Superior; daughters Becky (Dennis) Stanton, of Backus, and Susan (Craig) Halla, of International Falls, Minnesota; daughter-in-law Angeline (Bush) Francisco, of Portage, Michigan; grandchildren Mollee (Chad) Francisco-Heinle, Nikkee Francisco, Emily (Mike) Gedde, Jaclyn (Shaver) Briggs and Marcia Stanton; great-grandchildren Rena and Ruby Gedde, Lucy and Finley Briggs, and Tanner and Pippa Heinle; and brother-in-law George (Cheryl) Youngs. He was preceded in death by his parents, wife, and son Philip Francisco.
A celebration of Noel's life is planned for the spring. His remains will be interred at Ponto Lake Cemetery. Arrangements with Nelson-Doran Funeral Home.