Franklin “Frank” Sylvanus Crabtree, Jr., 89, of Interlachen, Florida, passed away peacefully at home, following an extended illness, Monday evening, June 10, 2019, surrounded by his loved ones. Frank was born, February 18, 1930, in Palatka, Florida, moving with his family to West Florida at age 3, then returning to Palatka, at the age of 17.
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Frank grew up loving agriculture, growing vegetables and tending to livestock. He farmed in East Palatka, where he grew cabbage, corn and potatoes, and established a feed mill. He was instrumental in getting the farmers in Hastings, to grow corn as a cover crop. Frank received the “Young Farmer of the Year Award” in 1959 and “Outstanding Achievement Award” in Conservation in 1960.
Frank always listened to people, never left anyone out and had a real passion for serving people and his community. He was the first Executive Director of the Palatka Housing Authority where he served for 10 years. During that time he also served as Bishop for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints where he was instrumental in the Purchase of Land and Construction of the First and second phases of the Palatka Chapel. He was a very caring and compassionate person, and always put the needs of others before his own. A very descriptive and great story teller, he was able to command anyone’s attention and was a natural born leader. Frank served his country honorably in the US Army during the Korean Conflict.
It was the simple things around him in life that he never took for granted, commenting daily how fortunate and thankful he was. Above all, Frank, was absolutely devoted to his wife, Marlene Turner, whom he married on Valentine’s Day in 1951. He was a father, to Franklin Mart, Kirt Lamar, Cindy Louise and Leslie Clark and a grandfather of 13, great-grandfather of 26, and great-great grandfather of 2. Frank always involved himself in every detail of his family’s lives. Supported, Respected and Loved his wife unconditionally. He was a man of strong faith, believing in the power and strength of the Savior’s love and the beauty and peace that would await him after his passing.
He was preceded in death by his father, Franklin S. Crabtree, his mother Mollie Mildred Hancock, grandson, Randy Crabtree and great grandson Robbie Crabtree.
Surviving are his wife of 68 years, Marlene, his sister, Natalie Winchester of Idaho Falls, Idaho, and many nieces and nephews.
Services will be held at 11:00 A.M. on Friday, June 14, 2019 at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in Palatka. Military Honors will be bestowed by the honor guard of the Armed Forces. Burial will follow at the San Mateo Cemetery. The family will receive friends, one hour prior to the service.
Flowers are gratefully accepted or memorial donations may be sent to Haven Hospice Roberts Care Center, 6400 St. Johns Ave., Palatka, FL 32177.
Memories and condolences may be expressed to the family at Frank’s Book of Memories page at www.johnsonoverturffunerals.com
Arrangements are entrusted to Johnson-Overturf Funeral Home in Palatka.