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Bernath, Llewellyn Lawrence
B: 15 May 1911, Hallock, Minnesota
D: 13 Jan 1982, Seattle, Washington
M: 1948, Frances E. Wilcoxen, b. 10/30/08, McDonald, Montana

FN: Jacob "J.J." Bernath
MN: Nellie Elizabeth Brown

Frances Wilcoxen Bernath, spouse of Llewellyn Bernath


Frances Bernath

When Frances Bernath found out she was chosen as Member of the Month, she asked if she could defer it for a couple of months to give her timie to do something worthy of the honor. Based on the incredibly active life Frances has always led, she would be hard put to improve upon her accomplishments.

Frances has been on her own since she was 18, after two years of college at Eastern Washington. The year was 1927 and she began teaching in Newport, Washington. Eventually, Frances moved to Pendleton, Oregon where she became principal of a small school. But, Frances was fired from her position the day after it was found out that she was married. This was during World War II and Frances was asked to run the rationing offices (later renamed U.S. Office of Price Administration). Frances was in charge of eleven offices in six countries of Eastern Oregon. Frances' involvement in the war effort also included working under Special Services for the U.S. Air Corps at Pendleton Field as Recreation Director for the Enlisted Men's Club.

After the war, Frances moved to Portland where she worked for a year in the loan division of US Bank. At night, Frances attended law school where she met her future husband, Llewellyn Bernath. The two of them moved to Seattle where Llewellyn received an Ed.D. from the University of Washington and Frances returned to teaching. Frances, once again, became an elementary school principal and has worked in several schools in the Seattle area. Llewellyn became a director of a reformatory school in Monroe where he claimed to have gotten all of Frances' failures.

Frances has owned and flown her own single engine plane and is an accomplished horseback rider, having ridden for a number of years at Bridal Trails. She has been an active member of the Granite Curling Club since the 1950's and is presently taking bridge lessons so she can learn to sit down in one place for more than a few minutes.

Frances is always enrolled in classes at the University of Washington, and is presently learning Spanish. Her travels have taken her around the world. When travelling, Frances enjoys choosing a foreign city where she will stay for approximately 2 months and enroll in the local university, discovering the area she is living in and its outlyiing regions. Last October, Frances chose France. Other travels have included Mexico, Italy, and several areas of South America, where ten of Frances' relatives live.

Frances joined the WAC to continue her athletic activities, especially swimming. She has served on the Fine Arts, Lecture and Senior Focus Committees and considers her participation to be one of the "special events" of her busy life.

When asked how she has been able to accomplish so much in her life, Frances replied, "You need to focus on the present, what is immediately in front of you, and do those things that you want to do today. There's no point in trying to control time - it's impossible. If you start thinking about everything that you want to do, you won't get anything done."

Frances is a vivacious woman and with a twinkle in her eye is proud to say she will be 84 years old in October and is looking forward to being an active member for many years to come.

Dated: August, 1992

The WAC Newsletter

Russel M. Hart, 17 Sep 2002 (