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August 20, 1931 - January 25, 2023
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Frank O. Young
Born in Albuquerque, New Mexico to Agnes and Lorain Young. He lived most of his school years in Delta Colorado where he graduated from high school in 1950. He then went on to University of Colorado in Boulder where he studied Engineering. He attended 3.5 years at university until he enlisted in the US Navy in September 1953. Earning the rank of Lieutenant Junior Grade in his 4+ years of active duty. He loved the Navy! He became a pilot and a navigator. He mostly flew Super Constellation class planes and talked of how challenging it was to take off and land on the aircraft carriers, including such memorable names as USS Lexington and USS Midway. He served during the Korean War conflict but true to form for all veterans of that time he downplayed his service and would actually say he didn’t serve in the Korean War because he never actually was in Korea. He would talk forever after that how he loved flying and should have stayed in the military.
After his honorable discharge he returned to Colorado where he married Lois Winters from Delta. In 1960, they, along with Frank’s parents, bought a 40 acre orchard in Olathe where they raised their 2 sons, Mark and Mike. Frank was an accomplished horticulturist. He and his parents were true pioneers and visionaries in this field. They even invented a clean natural gas heating system to save the fruit during the spring freezes that was used by many local orchards until the cost of natural gas made it an inefficient means of frost protection. He loved his apples and pears and served a couple terms as the President of the Western Colorado Horticulture Association and was a proud member for 60 years. Frank continued to work the orchard until only a few years ago when he just couldn’t walk so much. He was known as a guy who could and would fix anything. He once converted a Willy’s Jeep into a man lift to prune the orchard.
Just this past June, Frank was able to go to Washington DC with the Rocky Mountain Honor Flight. It was a true delight of his to see the many memorials there. His favorite was, of course, the National Museum of the US Navy where he recognized many of the ships, planes and places represented there.
Frank lived a full life in his 91 years!
Frank is survived by his brother Rodney (Martha) Young of Henderson NV, son Mark of Olathe, son Mike (Wendy) of Olathe and 3 grandkids and 1 great granddaughter. He is preceded in death by his wife Lois and his parents.
There will be a memorial service to honor Frank on April 15 at 1 pm. at his beloved Mountain View Orchard during the pear bloom.