Dr. Frank Edward Kachinski passed away peacefully Friday, August 14, 2020, at the age of 86, from complications due to heart surgery. He leaves his wife of 39 years, the former
Susan Hannah Peck, and their beloved golden retriever Vinny as well as his son Robert, wife Diane and grandchildren Corey and Victoria of South Hadley, stepdaughter Heather
Osgood and husband Jim and grandchildren Abigail and Spencer of Cumberland Center, ME, stepson Andy Peck and granddaughter Stella of Yarmouth, ME, niece Nancy Higgins
and husband John of Sellersville, PA, and niece Carolyn Alvarez and husband Henry of Fort Lauderdale, FL. Frank was predeceased by his brother Edward, sisters Eleanor and Kay.
Frank was born in Duryea, PA to Frank Kachinski and Helen Komar. He attended St Francis College, Penn State University and Georgetown Medical School. He was most proud of his long and distinguished career as a flight surgeon in the US Air Force which took Frank, his first wife Pat, and their 4 children, David, Robert, Karen and Kevin to various bases across the country, finally ending up in Granby, MA. He finished his military career at Westover AFB retiring as a Colonel and went into private practice in Springfield, MA delivering hundreds of area babies with Hampden County OBGYN. His passion for medicine was equaled by his passion for golf which he honed while stationed at Maxwell AFB in Montgomery, AL with his lifelong friend, Dr. Tom Brizendine. Their stories from the 19th hole made you wonder how they managed to stay out of the brig during all those years in service. As a flight surgeon Frank had many fascinating adventures that he loved to tell his son Bob during their late night card games on weekend golf trips. Two notable ones were when he was sent to a plane crash in the Carolinas during the cold war where the plane went down loaded with nuclear bombs and another when he flew to a South American country only to get stranded there during an attempted government coup. I’m sure the boredom of a hotel lockdown was alleviated by card games. Frank and Sue split their time between Beaver Lake in Ware, MA and Hilton Head Island, SC where they spent many happy months with their golden retrievers and a large circle of friends. Unable to sit still, Frank was instrumental in starting the Shipyard Ryder Cup golf tournament that grew in popularity over the years. He loved suiting up the winner with the coveted yellow jacket that he picked up at the Salvation Army and hosting the after party. An annual tradition of theirs was hosting a family Christmas brunch in Ware which turned out to be an all day affair and, for many, the highlight of the season. The day would end with Frank dressed up as Santa handing out individually wrapped lottery tickets.
Frank’s Memorial Service will be held on Thursday, August 20th at 11:00 AM at Wilbraham Funeral Home, 2551 Boston Rd., Wilbraham. Family and friends may greet the family prior to the Service from 10 – 11AM. Burial with Military Honors will be held privately for the family in MA Veterans’ Memorial Cemetery, Agawam. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Western MA Food Bank, 97 North Hatfield Rd., Hatfield, MA 01038 or to Wounded Warrior Project, PO Box 758516, Topeka, KS 66675-8516.
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