Frank was born on July 30, 1922, to Frank and Hilda Bourke of Somerville. He was a stellar musician and a proud Army veteran. He entered the army in September 1940. He was a drummer in the military band of the 94th Division under General Patton during World War II. In 1950 he was assigned to the United States Military Band at West Point, NY, where he remained until his retirement in 1966.
Frank said that all he ever wanted to do was play music. He had countless guitar students and played with numerous orchestras. He was a member of two municipal bands in NJ until he was in his late eighties. In addition to guitar and drums, Frank played vibraphone, xylophone, marimba, electric organ, and accordion.
He was a former member of the NJ Musicians Union.
In 2009 Frank moved to Colorado to live with his daughter. He contacted the band leader at Fort Carson in Colorado Springs and they promptly invited him to play. He was recognized for his long army musical career at two special performances with the Fort Carson Army Band.
Frank will be remembered for his love of all things musical and his general disdain for anything athletic. He was proud to say he never watched the Super Bowl. He loved a good joke and had a wonderful sense of humor.
Frank is survived by his daughter Deborah Hales of Monument, Co., brother Andrew Bourke of Somerville, sister Trudy Rizzi and her husband Lou of Sarasota, FL. , grandchildren Todd, Mike ,Bryan and Shannon, several nieces and nephews, and many musician friends around the country. He was predeceased by his son, Frank Jr., in 2014.
Cusick Funeral Home in Somerville is handling Frank's funeral arrangements. Friends are invited to a memorial for Frank on August 9th , beginning at 4:30 and concluding with a prayer service at 6:30, at Cusick Funeral Home, 80 Mountain Avenue, Somerville. A funeral ceremony with full military honors will be held at the West Point Cemetery, West Point, NY at 1:30 on August 10th.
The family would like to thank the wonderful people at the McCandless State Veterans Home in Florence , Co., who cared for Frank with love and respect for the last four months of his life. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Wounded Warriors or any charity that serves veterans.