Clarence Semanko, 83, of Fargo, ND formerly of Thief River Falls, MN passed away on Sunday, October 20, 2019 at Bethany On University in Fargo with his loving family at his side.

Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 1:30 PM on Wednesday, October 30, 2019 at St. Bernard’s Catholic Church in Thief River Falls, MN with Father Rick Lambert presiding. Visitation will be held from noon until 1:30 PM at St. Bernard’s Catholic Church.

Clarence Isadore Semanko was born May 21, 1936 in Gilman, Wisconsin to Lawrence and Isabel (Geist) Semanko. Clarence was raised on the family dairy farm near Huron, Wisconsin. He attended Sunny Brook Country School and graduated from Gilman High School in 1954.

Clarence had a great love of country music and guitar playing and entertained in several bands that included his sister and brothers. Upon graduating he moved to Kenosha, Wisconsin where he worked various jobs including door-to-door vacuum sales, Bucyrus Erie Mfg. and American Motors. Working in this industrial area is also where Clarence developed his intrigue with trains, which he followed with interest the rest of his life.

It was also here that he met Janice Anton and they were married August 26th, 1957. They then moved to Thief River Falls, MN to help Janice’s father farm after his wife’s death in 1959, where it was not uncommon for Clarence to carry a notepad that he used to jot down lyrics for country songs that he was composing.

It was on this dairy farm that they raised their family of 4 sons and farmed until 1976. Clarence continued working at various positions with various companies including Hydra Mac, U.S. Satellite, Arctic Cat, and Walmart until he retired fully in 2007.

He was active in the Knights of Columbus, taught youth CCD classes and was always happy to help out with any civic cause. He loved spending time with his grandchildren, reading, visiting historic buildings and watching his favorite teams.

Clarence is survived by his loving wife, Janice; four sons, Murray (Linda) of Fargo, ND; Mike (Laurie) of Fargo, ND; Marty (Lisa) of Thief River Falls, MN; Mitchell (Lorinda) of Fargo, ND along with 12 grandchildren, 6 great-grandchildren, two brothers, Lawrence (Sue) of Eau Claire, WI; William (Cathy) of Junction City, KS; and many other relatives and friends.

Clarence was preceded in death by his parents, Lawrence and Isabel; 2 infant siblings; and sister Lucile (Edward) Goebel.


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