Louis V. Cranek Jr., 94, passed away in Columbus, Texas on July 23, 2019. He was born to Louis V. Cranek Sr. and Julia (Minarcik) Cranek on April 10, 1925 at their farm house in Vox Populi, Texas. He was one of five that grew up in a home of dry land farmers. Louis began his rice farming career in 1942 when he helped his father get started and continued in the business until his retirement 65 years later.
Louis married the love of his life, Leona Wesselski on Aug. 18, 1949 and from that day on, an endearing love only grew stronger through the years. Marriage was more than just a commitment to him, but a representation of a love he wanted to make sure Leona felt every day. She was his pride and joy and no matter the circumstances or those he was around, his constant words of affection such as ‘my bride,’ and ‘sweetheart’ would remain constant through the years.
Throughout his life, he was a member of the Garwood School Equalization Tax Board, a Lifetime Member of the Elks Lodge in El Campo, a member of the Agriculture Stabilization Conservation Service (FSA), a trustee at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, a member of the St. Mary’s Catholic Church Finance Board, and dedicated 42 years to the St. Mary’s Picnic Meat Committee. He also belonged to the Knights of Columbus Council 3371 in Nada, TX and was a 4th Degree Knight of Columbus Assembly No. 1136 of Columbus, TX.
Louis was a man of integrity, teaching his family to give 100 percent in everything they do. He was a man of his word. Honesty, respect, and love of his faith made him the man that he was. Everything he has done in his lifetime was for the love of his loving wife and family.
Living a life based on faith, honesty and pride, Louis strived to make everyone around him better. With a firm handshake as strong as the respect he had for his family and friends, he never met a stranger and welcomed every opportunity to uplift us all. Whether it was with a story of ‘the good ole days’ in a deer camp playing dominoes or somewhere with his old buddies and sons, or a history lesson that at some point captivated us all, every story was told in entertaining fashion and just like him… never got old. He brought a new meaning to walking tall and everything about him backed it up. With his signature cowboy hat, welcoming smile, and personality that lit up every room he was in, he by word and action showed us all what a man should represent. And just like him, his stories and lessons will live on forever.
Louis was preceded in death by his parents, son Gerald “Beaver” Cranek, infant daughter Diana Leah Cranek and granddaughter Sarah Marie Andress.
Louis is survived by his wife of 69 years, Leona Cranek of Garwood; daughter, Sharon “Sugie” Andress and husband Andy of Victoria; sons, James “Cotton” Cranek and wife Connie of Garwood, Larry “Huck” Cranek and wife Donna of Garwood, Gary “Bodock” Cranek and wife Marla of Garwood and Tommy “Skeet” Cranek and wife Jeanenne of Louise; sister-in-law, Lorraine Cranek of El Campo; grandchildren, Christie Blansitt, Garett Cranek and Russell Cranek, Colby Andress and Cullan Andress, Holly Hoffer and Heather Glaze, Cari Jackson and Cody Cranek, Ashley Mathis and Hank Cranek; and great-grandchildren, Eli and Reece Blansitt, Ty, Hudson and Blakely Cranek, Alexis Andress, Sidney and Will Glaze, Maci Martin and Lynlee Jackson, Stockton and Shane Cranek, Conley and Hayes Cranek and Karlee and Colby Mathis.
A visitation was held from 9 to 10:30 a.m. Friday, July 26, 2019 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Nada. The rosary was at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, led by Nada Knights of Columbus with the Mass following at 11 a.m. with Fr. Michael Lyons officiating. Burial followed at St. Mary Catholic Cemetery in Nada.
Serving as pallbearers were his grandsons, Hank Cranek, Cody Cranek, Colby Andress, Garett Cranek, Cullan Andress and Russell Cranek. Honorary pallbearers were his granddaughters.
Memorials may be made to Garwood Volunteer Fire Department, P.O. Box 131, Garwood, TX. 77442 or St. Mary’s Catholic Church, P.O. Box 97, Nada, TX. 77460.
Online condolences may be made to the family at www.hennekefuneralhome.com.
Arrangements are under the direction of Henneke Funeral Home, Columbus.