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Sgt Frank Alfred Jilka
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Birth: Aug. 1, 1907
Black Wolf
Ellsworth County
Kansas, USA
Death: Oct. 31, 1987
Dickinson County
Kansas, USA

Kansas Wesleyan

Frank "Bullet" Jilka
Inducted in 1986
Sport(s): Football, Basketball, Baseball, Track

As a Coyote

Frank "Bullet" Jilka ended his athletic career at KWU with 4 letters in football, 4 letters in basketball, 3 letters in track, and one letter in baseball. He earned second team All-KCAC as a halfback, and his 220-yard low hurdles mark of 25.8 lasted for 27 years until broken in 1956. Frank went on to become a judge in Herington, Kansas.

The Emporia Gazette, 02 Nov 1987
Frank A. Jilka

Herington - Frank A. Jilka of Herington died Saturday at a hospital there. He had been a municipal court judge in Herington from 1971 until 1977.

Mr. Jilka was a technical sergeant in the Army during World War II and served in the 3rd Infantry Division Artillery. He served in campaigns in the Rhineland, Tunisia, Sicily, Naples-Foggia, Rome-Arno and Southern France.

He was born Aug. 1, 1907, at Black Wolf, the son of Frank J. and Annie Kratky Jilka. He married Wanda I. Zirkle on Aug. 10, 1958, at Herington.

Mr. Jilka is survived by his wife; two stepdaughters, Virginia Lowther of Emporia and Bonnie Thompson of McPherson; two brothers, John Jilka of Denair, Calif., and Lester Jilka of Hill City; two sisters, Mabel Chunn of Greensboro, N.C., and Emma Myrdahl of San Gabriel, Calif.; seven grandchildren, and 11 great-grandchildren.

Mr. Jilka was a member of the Herington United Methodist Church, Lions Club and Tri-County Historical Society at Herington. He was a member of the Kansas Retired Teachers Association and was active in the Flint Hills Area Agency on Aging. He was inducted into the Kansas Wesleyan Alumni Hall of Fame in 1966. He received three Bronze Arrowheads, a Bronze Star, the Presidential Citation and the French Croix-de-Guerre With Palm.

The funeral service will be held at 11 A. M. Tuesday at the Herington United Methodist Church. Burial, with military honors, will be in the Sunset Hill Cemetery at Herington.

Memorial contributions may be made to the church. Contributions may be sent to Donahue Funeral Home in Herington, where a prayer service will be held at 7 o'clock tonight.

Frank Alfred Jilka

Mr. Frank Alfred Jilka was born at Black Wolf, Kansas on August 1, 1907, the son of Frank Joseph and Annie Kratky Jilka. He grew to adulthood in the Black Wolf community and graduated from the Glendale High School in Glendale, KS.

Mr. Jilka and his two brothers began together at Kansas Wesleyan University, and together they provided K.W.U. a formidable athletic trio. Their success was so significant that Frank was honored in the Kansas Wesleyan Hall of Fame in the summer of 1986. He was the only athlete in Kansas Wesleyan's history to receive 12 letters in four sports: football, basketball, track and baseball. He was a member of the Tao Rho Omega Fraternity.

Mr. Jilka received his Master's of Arts Degree in Business Administration from Emporia State University. Frank was a teacher. He served for 37 years as a business teacher, coach, and principal in the Delavan, Parker, Neosho Rapids, Tampa, Woodbine and Herington High Schools. He was a member of the Kappa Delta Pi Educational Fraternity. His teaching career was only interrupted by two periods of service. One was a year when he was employed as an auditor at the Hudson Oil Company in Kansas City, KS.

The other interruption in his life was World War II. Mr. Jilka's service in the war was extensive and difficult with 33 months spent on the European front. He received nine battle stars for service in Algeria-France Morocco, Tunisia, Sicily, Naples-Foggia, Anzio, Rome-Arno, Southern France, Rhineland, and Central Europe. He was especially recognized for three of these invasions, and he received awards for his service, receiving the bronze Star, The Presidential Citation, and from the French Government, the Croix de Guerre with Palm. He mustered out as a Tech Sergeant.

Mr. Jilka entered the Christian Faith when he was baptized and raised in the St. Wenceslaus Catholic Church at Wilson, KS. In adulthood he began to express his faith within the United Methodist Churches. He has been an active and responsible participant in the Herington United Methodist Church until his passing.

When Mr. Jilka retired from teaching in 1971, he continued to make an important contribution in civic affairs.

He served as Herington Municipal Judge for six years, and then for short periods of time afterward during vacancies. He served on the Board of Directors of the Flint Hills Area Agency on Aging as the Dickinson County representative, and has been a member of the Herington Lions Club for over 20 years. He was a member of the American Association of Retired Persons, and the Salina Unit of the American Association of Retired Teachers. He was a member of the Leslie Kreps Post #62 of the American Legion, and of the Kansas Wesleyan Alumni Association.

On August 20, 1958 he was united in marriage to Wanda Ione Zirkle Briix. Wanda had two grown daughters, and in this marriage, he joined also in their larger family. He became a beloved elder in their family, in addition to a similar roll he had as the strong and loved brother and uncle in the lives of his own family. He never had any children of his own but his nieces, nephews, step-daughters, students and their families became as his own. He followed their progress through life as if he were related. Just two months ago, the family gathered with him at the Fr. Padilla Park to celebrate his 80th birthday.

He and Wanda have enjoyed a fruitful retirement in Herington sharing their common interests in education, civic interests, and the Church. While Mr. Jilka could never have been considered as bashful, he always viewed himself as an educator and citizen, and he carried himself with appropriate dignity and reserve.

A few weeks ago Frank was stricken with cancer, and succumbed to the disease at the Herington Hospital on Saturday, October 31st, 1987. He was eighty years, two months and thirty days old.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Mr. & Mrs. Frank Jilka; five brothers: Frederick, Rudolph, Adolph, Victor and Raymond; two sisters, two stepsisters, Mrs. Agnes Giersch, and Mrs. Blanche Homolka; and a stepdaughter Carolyn (Briix Lee).

He leaves to mourn his passing his wife, Mrs. Wanda Jilka, of the home in Herington; his step-daughters, Mrs. Virginia Lowther and her husband James of Emporia, KS, and Mrs. Bonnie Thompson and her husband Tommie of McPherson, KS; two brothers, John Jilka of Denair, CA, and Lester Jilka of Hill City, KS; two sisters, Mrs. Mable Chunn of Greensboro, NC, and Mrs. Emma Myrdahl of San Gabriel, CA; an aunt, Mrs. Agnes Jilka, of Salina, KS; 39 nieces and nephews, seven grandchildren, and eleven great-grandchildren; other relatives and many, many friends.

The memorial service was under the direction of the Donahue Funeral Home of Herington, KS, on Tuesday, November 3rd, 1987 at 11:00 a.m. The service was at and in the ministry of the Herington United Methodist Church in Herington, KS, with Pastor Ronald J. Williams officiating. Music was provided by a trio consisting of Mrs. Florine Daetwiler, Mrs. Doris Falen, and Mrs. Ernestine Donahue, who sang an arrangement of "The Lord's Prayer" arranged by Mrs. Jilka, and by Mrs. Mable Elliott who played the organ. Casket bearers were Milan Harkness, Les Weller, Stanley Stalter, Ed Miller, Ernest Phelps, and Willis Fisher. Interment was at the Herington/Sunset Cemetery. Military honors were provided by an honor guard from the 1st Infantry Division of Fort Riley, KS. Memorials were directed to the United Methodist Church in Herington.

Frank A. Jilka, Inducted 3 April 1942, Army Service # 37156874, Registered, Order # 1028, Mound City, Linn Co. KS (Board # 1). Also found a record for a Frank H. Jilka, Inducted 3 April 1942, Army Service # 37156674, Unregistered, Salina, Saline Co. (Board # 2); Serial # also assigned to John Puskarich. Frank A. was from the Saline Co. area not Mound City; don't know the reason for these discrepancies. 
Family links: 
  Frank Joseph Jilka (1878 - 1945)
  Anna J. Kratky Jilka (1882 - 1959)
  Wanda Ione Zirkle Jilka (1905 - 2003)*
  Blanche Virginia Jilka Homolka (1901 - 1972)*
  Agnes Alice Jilka Giersch (1902 - 1986)*
  Rudolph Ralph Jilka (1904 - 1973)*
  Frederick Jerry Jilka (1906 - 1979)*
  Frank Alfred Jilka (1907 - 1987)
  Emma Claire Jilka Myrdahl (1909 - 2002)*
  Adolph Jilka (1911 - 1986)*
  John Earl Jilka (1913 - 1988)*
  Victor Jilka (1916 - 1919)*
  Raymond L Jilka (1918 - 1982)*
  Lester Dale Jilka (1923 - 1998)*
*Calculated relationship
Sunset Hill Cemetery
Dickinson County
Kansas, USA
Created by: Becky Doan
Record added: Sep 23, 2007
Find A Grave Memorial# 21728312
Sgt Frank Alfred Jilka
Added by: Anonymous
Sgt Frank Alfred Jilka
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Sgt Frank Alfred Jilka
Added by: Reart
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- Becky Doan
 Added: Mar. 3, 2014

- Becky Doan
 Added: Jul. 1, 2013
As a boy, I was insensitive; as a man, I remember your example and honor your memory.
- M. Stuart
 Added: Aug. 3, 2012
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