Irving Francis Hajek left this world to be in the arms of his true love, Babe, which was the only place he wanted to be. He was the son of an Italian immigrant family and once he was of age he headed into the Army as a drill sergeant. He was then shipped over to Korea where he was shot in combat earning him the Purple Heart. His mother would tell the story of the day the telegraph man came down the street and up to her house to deliver the news to her. She feared he died. Once back in the states, he met RoseMarie, his beloved ‘Babe’. They sang and danced through their courtship and they would be together for sixty seven years. Family was everything to him, to both of them. He was drawn to law enforcement and completed the police academy to join the Chicago police force, first as a patrolman then moving up the rank to detective. His expertise was noticed and he was offered a position as bodyguard for the then president of the Cook County Board of Directors under the Richard Daley regime. By 1968, after the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr., the Chicago riots had started and the city was in turmoil. It was then Frank and Rose made the decision to move their little family to Wisconsin, away from all they knew, but to what they felt was the safest for all of them. Family came before all else. Frank worked a short time on the Berlin police force but cooking pizza and owning a bar where friends came to meet and have so much fun was what gave him joy. Frank and Rose loved people and after that chapter, in his retirement, he found his creative juices flowing and began making beautiful furniture from the wood of old houses and barns he tore down himself. Mama called him “a bull”, he was so strong. Making furniture made them friends all over the state and would be the prelude to all their travels through their senior years, collecting friends along the way. Our daddy was our fierce protector, our hero and he worked hard to provide for those he loved. It came time to join our mother. They were apart for five months too long and they’re together once again.
Irv will be dearly missed by his children: Valarie (Tom) Adams of Pine River, Clifford Hajek of Waupaca, and Richard Hajek of Bonita Springs, FL; sister, Frances Vogel and brother, Roland Hajek, Jr., both of Mt. Prospect, IL., sister-in-law, Dolores Ulrich of Fox Grove, IL; dear nieces and nephews and more friends than we can count.
A memorial Mass will be held at 11 a.m. Monday, January 6, 2020 at St. Mary Magdalene Catholic Church of Waupaca, with Fr. Xavier Santiago officiating. Visitation will be held from 10 a.m. until the time of Mass at the church. Military honors will follow Mass and burial will take place in the parish cemetery.
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