Francis R. Gorst

Francis R. Gorst

CROSS PLAINS – Francis R. Gorst, age 85, of Cross Plains, passed away peacefully on Wednesday, Aug. 5, 2020, at Agrace HospiceCare.

He was born on Sept. 17, 1934, the son of Harold and Beulah (Farr) Gorst. Francis graduated from Middleton High School in 1952. He married Patricia Ann O’Neill on Oct. 17, 1953, in Oregon. Francis retired as a custodian from the Middleton School District.

Passionate about youth baseball, Francis founded Cross Plains Babe Ruth Baseball in 1963. Since then, he has held the titles of state commissioner, league commissioner, league treasurer, and coach. He was inducted into the Babe Ruth and Ohio Valley Regional Halls of Fame. He was active in the Home Talent League as a player, coach and umpire. Francis spent countless hours donating his time for the baseball program in Cross Plains. He positively influenced the lives of many young men. When not at a baseball diamond himself, Francis enjoyed cheering on the St. Louis Cardinals and spending time with his family.

Francis is survived by his children, Ann (Glen) Wayer, Mike (Luanne) Gorst and Mary Ellen (David) Richmond; daughter-in-law, Kim Schaffer-Gorst; grandchildren, Kelly, Erin, Rebecca, Kristin, Scott, Jennifer, Amanda, Ali, Luke and Kyle; nine great-grandchildren; siblings, Roger (Mary Kay) Gorst and Margaret (Todd) Mason; and extended family, Elizabeth (Joseph) LaBella, Thomas (Rita) O’Neill and Joanne Topham. He was preceded in death by his wife, Patricia; son, James; parents; stepfather, Bernard “Buddy” Schroeder; and brother, Ronald.

A private family Mass of Christian burial will be held at ST. FRANCIS XAVIER CATHOLIC CHURCH, 2947 Thinnes St., Cross Plains, at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 12, 2020. Friends and family who wish to view the Mass via LIVE STREAM may visit Francis’ obituary page at and click on the Watch Webcast link. Burial will take place in St. Francis Xavier Cemetery.

Memorials may be made to the family for donations to be made in Francis’ name to different community organizations. The family would like to thank Dr. Brogunier, Lisa Mahoney, and Agrace HospiceCare for their kind and compassionate care. Online condolences may be made at

Dad, we love you; you will be missed.