Loyd Leroy Franks
September 30, 1925-October 29, 2018
Loyd Leroy Franks, of Lemoore, CA, passed away in the morning hours of October 29, 2018. He was born in Antlers, Oklahoma to William A. and Sarah Franks, one of twelve children. He would tell of times picking cotton with the rest of his family when he was just big enough to pull the cotton sack behind him. He also told of share cropping across Oklahoma in a Conestoga wagon. The process took them about a year. Landing in Watonga, OK, Loyd met a pretty young girl at school, that caught his eye. This relationship was put on hold as WWII came calling. He joined the Marine Corps and went off to Boot Camp. Following his training, he was dispatched to the Pacific. He spent time on Kwajalein Atoll and Peleliu in the conflict that was codenamed Operation Stalemate II, with the Japanese. While there, during an engagement, he was in a foxhole with other soldiers when several hand grenades landed in with him. His fellow soldiers left the foxhole while Loyd threw most of the grenades back from where they came. Sensing his time was nearly gone he shoved his boot down on the one grenade left, forcing it deep into the mud. When it detonated, Loyd was wounded, the explosion tearing a hole in his foot and shrapnel climbing up his leg. The enemy approached, and Loyd played opossum. He was a prisoner of war for 24 hours while being bayonetted and other more terrible actions, all the while never moving or making a noise. The next morning brought renewed conflict and the U.S. Troops were advancing. He took the opportunity, got up on his severely injured foot and leg, and ran toward his battalion, yelling yesterday's password. Loyd was hospitalized for nearly a year to recover from his injuries.
Loyd returned home, and while still on crutches married that pretty girl he had left behind, his sweetheart, Patricia Poarch. Loyd and Patricia moved to California to start their life together, with Loyd working in the bay area shipyards, and taking night classes. He began working for Civil Service in Richmond, CA.
Loyd moved his family to where he could better provide for them, transferring his job from Richmond to Lemoore. He was the head of the Fuel Division at NAS Lemoore. While working for Civil Service, he also transferred to Guam and Jacksonville, FL, retiring in 1980. He continued working in the private sector for five more years.
He was a member of the Masonic Lodge. He received several honors for his work in Civil Service, Including the highest available to a civilian employee. He was also a recipient of the Purple Heart.
Loyd is survived by one sister, Maxine Terry, his son Martin Franks (Barbara), Daughter-in-Law Lisa Franks, Grandchildren Kenneth Franks (Marisa), Kevin Franks (Marin), Leanne Chrispens (Drew), Tera Franks, and Brandon Franks. Greatgrandchildren Nicholas Franks, Kendall Franks, Avery Garges, and Ethan Franks, along with several Brothers/Sisters-in-law, and multiple nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents, William and Sarah, his wife of 68 years Patricia Franks, most of his siblings, his son, Larry Franks and daughter, Susan Franks.
Graveside services will be held on November 16th, 2018, at the Lemoore Cemetery on North Lemoore Avenue, in Lemoore California at 12:00 noon.
In lieu of Flowers a donation in Loyd's name would be appreciated.