|Birth: ||May 6, 1921|
|Death: ||Jan. 29, 2012|
Daily World (Aberdeen, WA), 7 February 2012
Frank was born in Jackson, Tennessee on May 6, 1921, and passed away peacefully on January 29, 2012. He left the family farm at 16 to join the Civilian Conservation Corps, joined the Army in 1940, and was a radio operator/gunner/navigator on a B-26 over Western Europe. He was awarded many medals but never liked flying in planes again. After leaving and rejoining the Army several times, he met his future wife, Mildred, at an Army dance in 1947 and married her, along with her three children. He worked in Military Intelligence in the Philippines and Japan, and finally at Fort Lewis. He retired in 1962, and the family grew up in Olympia.
Shortly after, he was a corrections officer for the State Correctional Center in Shelton. He liked being in the main guard tower, and interacting with inmates. He also earned his Bachelor's degree in Psychology in 1974. In 1978, he separated from his wife Mildred, then retired from the DOC. He traveled back and forth to the family farm in Jackson, and met his second partner, Harriett McFarlane. She was his constant companion and they were happy. They settled in McCleary for many years, and he wrote the book "South of My Village" under a pen name. In 2004, Harriett died of cancer.
Frank's dementia increased, and his neighbor, Maggie, and her daughter, Joyce, provided friendship and in-home care for him. In 2009, he moved in with Joyce and her husband. It was great for him - with increasing dementia - to be in his new home with 24-hour good care and attention. He was a quiet hero and his humor remained to the very end.
Frank had six children; James Menear, Karen Menear, Carolyn Burns, Marnie Cain, Michael Meriwether and Frank (Pat) Meriwether II. James, Carolyn and his wife, Mildred, have passed away. He has five surviving grandchildren and an increasing number of great-grandchildren. His lone surviving sibling is his sister, Elleen Parsons, in Tennessee.
Frank's family is holding a small graveside service with his ashes at the McCleary Cemetery at 12:00 Noon on Thursday, February 9, 2012, for family and friends as was Frank's wish, followed by a potluck. View an extended online obituary and leave remembrances at www.FuneralAlternatives.org Arrangements are with Funeral Alternatives of Washington 360-753-1065.
Frank H. Meriwether
Our dad was born in Jackson, Tennessee on May 6, 1921 and passed away peacefully on January 29, 2012 due to complications from pneumonia. In between those years, he led an adventurous life. He worked the family farm as a boy, and left home at 16 to join the Civilian Conservation Corps, traveling to Georgia and sending money home every month to help his family during the late depression years.
He came back home to the farm but left 9 months later to join the Army in September 1940. Many years later, Dad told us that he joined the Army mainly to see more of America. He was a radio operator and navigator on a B-26 over western Europe, seeing many planes in his squadron shot down during the last year of WWII. He was awarded many medals, including 3 bronze stars, for heroism and performance. Dad was a quiet and reluctant hero, never saying much about the war. He seemed weary of war and didn't want to fly in planes even decades later. He left the Army in August 1945.
He was a member of "the greatest generation" but wandered through several states over the next year. He briefly re-joined the Army and then left to go back to the family farm in Jackson. He joined the Army again in 1947 and met his future wife Mildred at an Army dance, and married her shortly after – along with her three small children. Dad and Mother added three more of us to the family shortly after. He worked in Military Intelligence in the Philippines and then in Japan until 1955, when he was assigned to Fort Lewis, and lived with his family in Olympia until he retired from the Army in 1962 at the rank of E7. It seems that life in different countries, having a family, and being in MI had settling effects on Dad.
As a civilian, he was a real estate agent briefly, then he became a corrections officer at the State Corrections Center in Shelton. He enjoyed the dynamics of the military structure and the opportunities to know some of the inmates, show them respect and give them advice and help. His favorite assignment was the major guard tower on night shift, accompanied by the quiet, the work and his thoughts. Dad retired after many years of service to the prison and its inmates. He was held in high regards for his work for the State and his work with the inmates.
Dad was very intelligent but never pursued a college degree until 1970, and he obtained his Bachelor's degree in Psychology in 1974. But in 1978, he separated from his wife Mildred. He lived in Shelton until he retired from work at the prison. He then traveled back and forth to the family farm, living in the house he grew up in, and re-connecting with his siblings and their families, then returning to western Washington. He worked on improving the farm along with the help of the Conservation District.
During these years, he met his second partner, Harriett McFarlane. Dad obviously enjoyed her company and presence, and didn't leave her side for very long. She accompanied him during his trips to and from Jackson as well. During these years he also wrote and self-published a book about several parts of his life, titled "South of My Village" under a pseudonym.
Dad never liked life in big cities and felt more at home in small towns and rural settings. Around 1990, he and Harriett stopped traveling back and forth to Jackson, and they settled in a trailer park in McCleary, and they were both happy. Life was quiet, good, rural, and with few variations until Harriett passed away from cancer. He had started seeing some delusions before her death, but Harriett was no longer there to help and assure him.
Dad was lonely and restless again, but this time he was not moving from their beloved old trailer. He started seeing and imagining more delusions. He also began visiting a nearby couple Mike and Maggie and enjoying their company. He started receiving help from Maggie with cooking and cleaning, and also from Maggie's daughter Joyce. As Dad's dementia increased, he received more medications and more assistance from Maggie and Joyce.
Finally in 2009, Dad could no longer safely stay by himself in the trailer in the evenings. He then moved from his trailer into the house that Joyce and her husband had just started to rent in McCleary. It was a great benefit to Dad to be in a quiet, safe and clean home setting, with good 24-hour care and company. They became his last "family." Joyce and Dad became good friends, and he depended on her for everything he needed. He stayed there the last couple years of his life, quieted in his increasing dementia, but in the last place he would call home.
Dad had six children: James Menear, Karen Menear, Carolyn Burns, Marnie Cain, Michael Meriwether, and Frank (Pat) Meriwether II. James and Carolyn have passed away, as well as his wife Mildred. He has five surviving grandchildren and an ever-increasing number of great grandchildren. His surviving sibling and sister, Elleen Parsons, lives in Tennessee.
His family is holding a small graveside service with his ashes at the McCleary Cemetery on Thursday, February 9, 2012 at 12:00 noon for family and friends, as was Dad's wish. He never was very comfortable in receiving a lot of public attention and recognition for what he had done. There will be a potluck at the cemetery's hall after the service.
William Pace Meriwether (1893 - 1977)
Eloise Henning Meriwether (1893 - 1972)
Mildred Geraldine Britton Meriwether (1920 - 2004)
Harriett L Black Meriwether (1915 - 2004)
Virginia Judith Meriwether Boylan (1914 - 1993)*
William Pace Meriwether (1918 - 1998)*
Frank Henning Meriwether (1921 - 2012)
John Henry Meriwether (1926 - 1998)*
Lea Ann Meriwether (1955 - 1982)**
Note: TMSI 
Grays Harbor County
Created by: The Meriwether Society, ...
Record added: Feb 09, 2012
Find A Grave Memorial# 84742041