FRANCE, Frank T., 93, of Wintersville, loving husband, father, grandfather and great grandfather, died Tuesday June 26, 2012 at Trinity West.
He was born December 3, 1918 in West Middletown, PA., the son of the late William and Minnie Phillips France.
Frank was a member of Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church and it's men's club, American Legion Post 557, Carpenter's Local 186, VFW 534, U.S.S. Landing Craft Infantry, National Association and the Jefferson County Chapter of the Ohio Genealogical Society.
Like his father William, Frank was a carpenter by trade. Together they built many homes in the tri-state area and Baltimore, MD. He also worked for Alexander Lumber and Gribben Construction. He was known for his fine craftsmanship both in building and furniture making.
He built a home in Wintersville for his wife and family in 1958 and lovingly made each of his seven children a beautiful grandfather clock. Frank was part of the construction crew that built Blessed Sacrament Church, where he has been a member for fifty-four years. He was given the St. Francis Award for his many carpentry contributions to the interior of the church.
Frank was an exceptional athlete and avid baseball player. He played baseball for many years at Wheeling Island Park and also for the Avella Firemen. Frank served in the United States Navy from July 1943 to November of 1945. He was assigned to the USS LCI 540 (Landing Craft Infantry) as a coxswain and delivered ground troops to Omaha Beach in Normandy, France on D-Day. On his 20mm gun shields he painted "Little Rita" in honor of his wife. His significant military medals include: Combat Action Ribbon, American Campaign Medal, European African Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with star, World War II Victory Medal and the French Jubilee of Liberty Medal.
Frank is also preceded in death by his five brothers; William, James, Ozzie, Charles and Carl and one sister, Clarinda McFadden.
Surviving are his wife, Rita Rector France whom he married April 15, 1941, four sons; David France of Wintersville, Jerry (Connie) France of Cape May, NJ., Eric (Chris) France of Columbus and John (Pam) France of Tucson, AZ and three daughters, Maureen (Tony Walsh) France of Cincinnati, Carol Secoy of Chillicothe and Rita (Bob) Scruton of Anchorage, AL.: 13 grandchildren and five great grandchildren.
Calling hours are Friday 4-8 p.m. at the Mosti Funeral Home, Sunset Chapel, 4435 Sunset Blvd. Steubenville. A funeral liturgy with mass will be celebrated 9:30 a.m. Saturday at Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church, Msgr. Kurt Kemo, celebrant.
Burial in West Middletown Cemetery. There will be a vigil service at 4 p.m. Friday.