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Frank R Collart
August 4, 1953 ~ November 14, 2023 (age 70) 70 Years Old
43 Trees, Flowers, or Condolences have been shared with support of Frank's family - View on Tribute Wall
Frank Raymond Collart of Bolingbrook, Illinois passed away suddenly at the age of 70 on Tuesday, November 14, 2023. Born to Henry and Mary (nee Yapelli) Collart in Steubenville, Ohio, just over the border from where his family lived in Weirton, West Virginia, Frank was one of eight children (and the other pea in a pod to his twin sister, Celine).
He was a kind and curious child, who loved being outside and never sat still. He often had an animal in tow, including a pet raccoon and a chicken he carried around under one arm even though it pecked at him for freedom. Frank was also a lover of books and walked his twin sister over a mile to the library every week. He read everything he could, and by 7th grade he had exhausted the downstairs area of children and adolescent books and was sent upstairs by the librarians to read the rest of the library. His love of learning grew into a successful career as a scientist, and he contributed important work to the fields of protein and genome structure, as well as cancer research, publishing over 100 peer-reviewed publications along the way. With his long-time collaborator, he discovered a protein called IMPDH (an acronym well known to his kids), which is still studied around the world today.
But his professional accomplishments pale in comparison to the person he challenged himself to be every day. He looked after those around him and himself, in an effort to be there for those he loved. He went to the gym every. single. day. Sometimes twice a day. He rode his bike – not just to the gym, but sometimes to New Jersey (from Chicago). He volunteered for the St. Vincent DePaul Society, helping those in financial distress emerge from the overwhelming weight of debt and medical expenses. He fed the homeless regularly at the Daybreak Center homeless shelter. He fixed everyone’s bike. He held all the babies (and often got them to stop crying). And he talked to everyone, in a way that effortlessly melded a desire to put you at ease with a genuine interest in learning about you as a person.
He maintained a sincere faith in our overwhelming similarities as human beings and a straightforward belief that we should leave this world a better place, in whatever ways we can.
He is survived by his beloved wife of 47 years, Sue (nee Kampf), his four children and their partners, Annie (Neil Campbell), Michael (Rachel Julis), Robbie, and Sarah (Tyler Lawrence), and three grandchildren, who thought that he was the most amazing Pere Pere, Farryn, Theo, and Rory. He also leaves behind sisters Diane Smith and Celine (Marty) Hemminger; brothers Thomas (Patricia Collart), David (Kathy) Collart, and John (Marcia) Collart; and sisters-in-law Wendy Collart and Monette Collart, as well as numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins. He was predeceased by his parents and his brothers, Henry and Michael, as well as his brother-in-law, Walt Smith.
Friends are invited to call on Monday, November 20, 2023 between 9:30-10:30 a.m. at St. Francis of Assisi Church (1501 W. Boughton Rd, Bolingbrook, IL 60490), where a funeral mass will begin at 10:30. A luncheon will follow immediately after mass.
Those who are able and wish to contribute in Frank’s memory may donate their time or contribute towards items needed at the Daybreak homeless shelter in Joliet, Illinois, a link to which is available on their website at https://catholiccharitiesjoliet.org/daybreak-center/. Alternatively, Frank supported the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy: Donate to Support the Trails You Love - Rails-to-Trails Conservancy (railstotrails.org).