Frank B. Easton
SEVAKEEN LAKE — Frank B. Easton, 103, of Sevakeen Lake, Salem, passed away on Valentine’s Day, Thursday Feb. 14, 2019 in Toledo, Ohio where he had been living with his daughter.
Frank was born June 3, 1915 in Portland, Oregon to parents John Irving and Theresa Euphrosine (Johnson) Easton.
A mechanical engineer by trade, Frank was known as a creative problem-solver. He could build almost anything, fix anything himself and produced several patented inventions. Frank was best known, however, for his passion for aviation. His beloved “Flying Flea” airplane is displayed in the hangar at the Experimental Aircraft Association Museum in Oshkosh, Wisc.,after residing for many years in the Easton basement. Frank’s first-hand knowledge and experience in working with the Flea’s inventor, Henri Mignet, resulted in Mignet enthusiasts from all over the world seeking his opinions and asking to hear stories of his early experiences in building his own aircraft and learning to fly.
Throughout his career, Frank worked for companies such as B&W Research, Taylorcraft Aviation and Crane-Deming from which he retired in 1980. It was obvious to all, however, that his energy was “recharged” when he used his annual vacation to attend the EAA Fly-In every summer from 1954 until this past year when he attended the air show for the final time at the age of 103.
When Frank left Oregon in 1937 to work with Henri Mignet in Illinois, he had no idea that he would meet the gregarious Gertrude Gerhardt at a dance. They were married for 67 years until her death in 2007. Frank and Gertie moved to their beloved Sevakeen in 1945 and were faithful members of Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in Salem. Apparently, Gertie thought they should be together on Valentine’s Day this year and called him to be with her.
Frank is survived by his daughters: Joan (Tom) McNutt and Debbie (Jeff) Easton-Bentley; grand-children: Amy (Mike) Miller, Eric (Carol) McNutt, Aaron (Tracey) McNutt; great-grandchildren: Jordan (Brian) Rieff, Meghan Miller, Racheal Miller, Alyse McNutt and Eliot McNutt; and nephew, Tom Easton, and cousin, Louis Bliem of Portland, Oregon. Frank was preceded in death by his wife, Gertie; parents Irving and Effie; brother Clarence; sisters Elvera and Dorice; and nephew William Easton.
Calling hours and funeral services will be held Saturday Feb. 23, 2019 at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church. Calling hours will be held from 10 to 11 a.m. with the funeral service immediately following at 11 a.m. In lieu of flowers memorial contributions can be made to the church memorial fund at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church 1089 E. State St., Salem, Ohio 44460.
Arrangements are being made by Stark Memorial and Cremation Services.
Frank’s obituary may be viewed, and condolences sent online at www.starkmemorial.com.