Frank R. King Jr.


Frank R. King Jr. Obituary
By his own account, Frank R. King, Jr. led an extraordinary life. Born in 1930 at the height of the Depression, he attended 38 schools across Kansas, Colorado, California, and Oregon before graduating from high school in Canon City, Colorado. He married Verona Levine and had his first daughter, Linda Jo, when only 20 years of age. The marriage did not survive his three-year stint in the Marine Corps fighting in Korea. He met and married Rose Koehler in Prescott, Arizona in 1954, and became stepfather to Sylvia and Patricia. He and Rose moved to Bakersfield, where daughter Dixie was born, and where Frank worked for the Santa Fe Railroad for the next 42 years.
After Rose's death in 1974, Frank began to travel. Over the next 30 years, he visited both western and eastern Europe, Israel, Egypt, China and the Far East, the Soviet Union, Australia, New Zealand, the Caribbean, Peru and Kenya. He traveled up the Nile and down the Amazon. He realized his dream of visiting all seven continents when he took a cruise to Antarctica. His favorite trip, however, was an 8-day river rafting trip down the Colorado River, which he took twice in his 60s. In 1997, after retiring, Frank realized another dream and enrolled at Bakersfield College. He received his AA and transferred to Cal State, Bakersfield, majoring in history. In June 2005, he was featured in the Bakersfield Californian as the oldest CSUB graduate that year, at 75 years of age. The day after his graduation, he suffered a massive stroke. He spent the next months learning to walk and function again; "another kind of education," as he put it. Frank transitioned into his greatest journey to date on March 13, 2014, and his family and friends have no doubt he is lighting up the universe with his zest for travel and adventure.
A celebration of Frank's life will be held on March 22 at 4:00 p.m., at the Brighton Parks Club House, at 12103 Upper Waterford Drive in Bakersfield. The family is immensely grateful to the wonderful staff of Pacifica Senior Living and of Optimal Hospice for their care, compassion, and kindness. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance, Optimal Hospice, or a .
Cherished Memories Mortuary
Published in Bakersfield Californian from Mar. 16 to Mar. 19, 2014
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