Francis Joseph Grassel was born October 24, 1922 at Mitchell to Joseph and Mary (Maddock) Grassel. He attended country school and graduated from Artesian High School in 1940. He worked at Green Giant Canning Factory at Blue Earth, MN for several years and then a gas station in Mitchell until 1948. On May 3, 1948 he married Loretta Sullivan at St. Margaret Catholic Church in Kimball. They moved to his uncle’s farm northwest of Artesian where he farmed his entire life. He was a member of St. Charles Catholic Church and the Knights of Columbus.
He is survived by six sons: Tim Grassel and wife Jan, Artesian; Terry Grassel and wife LaVonne, Sioux Falls; Edward Grassel and wife Laurie, Artesian; Pat Grassel, Howard; Joseph Grassel and wife Diane, Artesian; Todd Grassel and wife Maggie, Elk Point; eight daughters: Joan Helling, Madelia, MN; Rita Trebil and husband Doug, Artesian; Connie Ruml and husband Ken, Howard; Ann Grassel, Watertown; Lisa Licht and husband Bill, Estelline, SD; Barbara Nebelsick and husband Gary, Elk Point; Marlys Sears, Black Hawk; Lori McFarland and husband Jace of Marshall, WI; fifty-four grandchildren, fifty great-grandchildren; one brother, John Grassel, Mitchell; three sisters: Eleanor Unterbrunner, Woonsocket; Raeburn Moore, Mitchell and Mary Jo Vetter, Woonsocket; two sisters-in-law: Delores (Shorty) Mathis, Woonsocket; Marcie Hinker, Howard; and a brother-in-law, Marvin (Dottie) VanOverschelde, Mitchell.
He was preceded in death by his wife Loretta, son David, one brother, Ted, two sisters, Ruth Hinker and Monica VanOverschelde and two grandsons in infancy.