Frank O. Farmer
Frank O. Farmer passed away peacefully in his home of 89 years, on February 17, 2014. Frank was born April 7, 1924, to Clifford and Nell Farmer. He was a lifelong resident of the Cave Spring-Willard area.
Preceding him in death were his parents, his daughter Connie Winn and his wife Helen, who passed January 18, 2014.
Frank is survived by his son, Andy and daughter-in-law Cindy; grandchildren: Amy Westermann, husband Will of St. Peters, Mo; Matthew Farmer, wife Autumn of Springfield, Mo., Drew Farmer, wife Katy of Manchester, England, Laura Sweeten, Husband Greg, Springfield, Mo; great grandchildren: Andrew and Katie Westermann, St. Peters, Mo, Telyse Masaoay, Springfield, Mo., Finlay Scott Farmer, Manchester, England, Anna and Isiah Sweeten, Springfield, Mo. Also surviving, a brother-in-law Darrel Cathey of Willard, Mo., along with several nieces and nephews.
Frank and Helen were united in marriage on August 22, 1942, where they lived and operated the family dairy farm. To this union was born one daughter, Connie and one son Andy. Frank continued to farm until the early 60's when the drought forced him to make a change. In 1954, Frank began his career in writing with the MFA Milling Company of Springfield, Mo., writing articles for the MIL-O-Gram, the company public relations periodical.
In 1956, Frank left MFA for the Springfield News and Leader, where he began as a reporter. In 1963, Frank and Mickey Owen Collaborated on "The Boy's Baseball Book", which was sold at Mickey Owen's Baseball School for years at Miller, Mo. Frank has interviewed over the years, many members of Congress, Governors, movie stars and the movers and shakers of the Springfield community along with being given the last written interview granted by FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover, in 1972. One of his most enjoyable assignments as Farm Editor was covering the Ozark Empire Fair every years, where he would meet old friends and make new acquaintances.
On December 3, 1986, Governor John Ashcroft declared this date to be "Frank Farmer Day' in the state of Missouri in honor of his thirty years of public service as a veteran reporter, author and editorial page editor of the Springfield Newspaper. Frank retired to his beloved farm from which he began. However, Frank wasn't done yet, he continued to write a column for the Ozark Farm and Neighbor, which he called "Headin' for the Last Roundup". He loved agriculture and the people involved in the production of our nation's food.
Frank served on numerous boards including the Greene County Farmer's Cooperative, Greene County Extension Council, Greene County Board of Educations, Springfield Library Board, President and member of the Willard R-2 Board of Education and the Missouri Resource Conservation and Development Council. He was also a moving force in the establishment of the Ozark Food Harvest, Good Samaritan Boy's Ranch, The Willard Retirement Village and the Golden Rule Society. His by-line appeared in many trade journals, national magazines and local newspapers and publications of the U. S. Information Agency.
One of Frank's proudest accomplishments was being instrumental in the establishing of Ozark Technical Community College where he served on the Board of Trustees from its inception in 1990 until his retirement from the board in 2008.
Frank's philosophy can be summed up as follows: "A person's character is best judged by the compassion they exhibit to those less fortunate."
The family would like to thank Good Shepard Hospice for their care during the last few weeks of both dad and mother's life. A special thank you to Kelly for her attentive and loving care. In lieu of flowers please make any donations to Good Shepard Hospice.
Graveside Services will be held on Friday, February 21, 2014 at 11:00 a.m. in Wesley Cemetery, Willard with Rev. Tom Geer officiating with interment following under the care and direction of
Wilson Brim Daniel Funeral Home, Ash Grove, Mo.
The family will receive friends on Thursday evening, February 20, 2014 in the Ash Grove Funeral Home Chapel, from 5:00 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
Published in the News-Leader from Feb. 19 to Feb. 21, 2014
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