Francis Lee “Frank” Franklin, of Mason, MI, passed away at the age of 94 on Thursday, November 12, 2020.
Frank was born to Emory and Ora (Sanders) Franklin in Hutsonville, Illinois, December 28, 1925. He hitchhiked to Michigan in the early 1940s and met his late wife Lois (Warner) Franklin. Frank was drafted in the United States Navy in 1944 after just turning 18 years old. He married Lois that same year. He returned to his wife Lois after his deployment. The two lived in Jackson, MI, where they started their family before buying a farm in Mason, MI in the early 1960s. Frank, Lois and their four sons worked their farm, which they called ‘Hell’s half acre.’
Frank worked as an Ironworker for over 50 years; he was a member of the Ironworkers Local 25. As a hobby Frank and his sons built race cars and raced them in Spartan Speedway and Springport Speedway. He enjoyed horses and always wanted one; but they didn’t go fast enough for his liking. He chose race cars instead.
In his later years you would often find him outside on his porch swing sitting in the sun with his cats. Every summer Frank went to the races every Friday and Saturday night. In the fall he grew the best pumpkins. He loved going to his great-granddaughters’ band concerts and horse shows. Every Thursday he and his partner in crime, Joy Monroe, would go out for breakfast, rain or shine.
Frank was preceded in death by his wife of 68 years, Lois, ten siblings and his parents. He is survived by his three siblings, Cora Wegr, Joe, and Ike Franklin and many nieces and nephews from Illinois; his four sons, Edward “Butch,” Glen “Bud,” Jerry, and Charles Franklin; his nine grandchildren, including his pride and joy, Frances “Franny” and Jason Franklin; and grand-dog Jake. Frank has 16 great-grandchildren. He often referred to his most precious great-granddaughters as ‘grandpa’s girls,’ EmaLee, Ella and Rebecca Franklin. He will be deeply missed by his birthday buddy and 79th birthday present Ella Franklin.
The funeral service will be held at 12:00 p.m. on Thursday, November 19, 2020, at Robbins United Methodist Church, 6419 Bunker Rd., Eaton Rapids, MI, with visitation beginning at 11:00 a.m. Interment will take place in Greenwood Cemetery in Onondaga. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Ingham County Animal Shelter. Arrangements are by the Estes-Leadley Greater Lansing Chapel.