Frances “Ozzie” Koski | News, sports, jobs

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Francis “Ozzy” Koski, a 74-year-old resident of Houghton Canal, died with his family at his side on Friday, April 14, 2023, at his home after a battle with glioblastoma (brain cancer).

He was born on February 18, 1949, in Ironwood, Michigan, the son of the late Frank and John (Frateek) Koski. Ozzie grew up in Ironwood and Gwinn where his father worked various construction jobs before the family moved to Houghton and then Chassell.

He attended Houghton Schools but left before graduating to join the United States Marine Corps during the Vietnam War. Ozzie was proud to go back to school to receive his GED after coming home from his service in the Marine Corps and the Marine Reserves. He also attended Auto Tech School at Northern Michigan University.

Mr. Koski was a proud veteran, having served as a sniper and demolitions expert with the US Marines in Vietnam.

After serving in the Marine Corps and the Marine Reserves, Ozzie returned home and joined the Army National Guard, where he served for 21 years before retiring.

He had worked as a cook, janitor, and bus driver in Stanton Township Schools. Then he worked as a security guard and was a courier.

Mr. Koski also owns and operates Houghton Radio & Marine, and sells and installs marine radios and two-way communication systems for fire departments and schools. He also owned his own bait shop and sold fuel to boaters on the Portage Canal for many years from his home.

On July 12, 1980, he married the former Barbara Yeckle. The couple resided on the Houghton Canal, where they raised their daughter, Missy.

Ozzie loved spending time outdoors hunting, fishing, camping and taking trips to Isle Royale on his 17′ Starcraft “JFK”. He was an active diver in the area and assisted in many search and rescue operations. Spending time at fishing camp at Misery Bay, hunting with his daughter and son-in-law, and taking his slingshot for horseback riding were some of his favorite pastimes.

Ozzie was a founding member of the former Range Motorcycle Club (now the Range Snowmobile Club). Mr. Kosky has been a member of the Stanton Twp Volunteer Fire Department for 20 years, a member of the Marine Corps Keweenaw League, Superior Search and Rescue, and enjoyed helping out with elderly friends the Little Brothers of the Elderly. Ozzie was also very proud of being able to help many veterans with problems they had after returning from fighting.

He was preceded in death by: his wife Barbara, his parents, his maternal grandparents: Oscar and Myrtle Vrateek, and his paternal grandparents: Frank Evalt and Esther Koski.

The survivors are: his daughter, Melissa (Alan) Guntonen, of Alston; His son, Jared (Bobby Joe) Hoffenbaker, is from Mussene, Wisconsin. His grandchildren: Allie (Daniel) Curtis, Julie Guntonen, Matthew Guntonen, Brenden (Kalia Xiong) Hofenbaker, Jade Hofenbaker. His granddaughter, Freya Cortez.

His brother, Clark (Joyce) Coski, is of Chassels. His sister is Laurie (Mike) Markham of Hancock Channel. Sisters-in-law: Amy (Don) Slagle of Goodrich, MI, Beth Pinter of Ann Arbor, Michigan. Many nieces, nephews and cousins. His furry buddies Blitz and Kisses.

Military tributes to Ozzy would later be held at Forest Hill Cemetery in Houghton.

In lieu of other expressions of sympathy, the family suggests making memorial contributions to the Brass Rural Humane Society in Ozzie Koski’s memory.

The Ozzie family would like to thank Portage Home Hospice and Copper Country Chiropractic and Tranquility Massage for their wonderful care of Ozzie.

To view Ozzie’s obituary or to send condolences to the family, please visit

Funeral Service and Memorial Cremation – Hancock Church assists family with arrangements.