Frank R. Johns

  • "10-16-13 I enjoyed our chats in my office and hope he did..."
    - Dr. L. J. Assalita
  • "Thank you for your service to our country!"

Frank R. Johns June 8, 1925 September 21, 2013 Frank R. Johns, of State College passed away on Saturday, September 21, 2013 at the Fairways in State College. He was born on June 8, 1925 in Tinicum Township, Essington. He was the son of the late Prella and Wesley Johns. Frank graduated from Ridley Park High School in 1943. On June 23, 1945, he married his loving wife Vera Temchuk, who survives their marriage of sixty eight years. He is survived by his older sister Prella Long, of Antelope, CA; a daughter and two sons, Marina Johns, of Bethany Beach, DE, Frank R. Johns Jr. and his wife Muriel, of Islemorado, FL, Brian W. Johns, of State College; and three grandchildren, Larissa Girouard and her husband, Peter and their son Ian, of Lunenburg, MA, Alexis Johns Mebane, of State College, Nikolai G. Mebane and his wife, Valerie, of Ft. Lauderdale, FL. He is preceded in death by two brothers, Wesley and Paul Johns, both of California. Also surviving is his beloved Scottie companion Murray. Murray was a great joy and comfort to Frank in his final years. Frank joined the Navy at the Penn State program from 1942-1945. As a corporal in the Second Marine Division he became part of the occupational forces near Nagasaki, Japan. He was in charge of a squad responsible for collecting small-arms. After being discharged from the service in 1946, he attended Penn State University with the help of the G-I Bill, graduating with a degree in Mechanical Engineering in 1948. He was soon employed at the Naval Air Development Center in Johnsville as an Aeronautical engineer. In 1955 he became a member of the Air Warfare Research Department as a propulsion specialist. This department was instrumental in the development of the TF30 turbofan engine, the principal power plant for the F-14 Tomcat, F111, and A-7 aircraft systems. In 1959 he was promoted to Senior Aero Power Plant Engineer, and was acting Chief of the Vehicles Technology Division. In 1972 he was named Superintendent of the Aircraft and Crew Systems Technology Directorate. This department was involved in technical research and development programs to numerous to mention, He was invited to become part of a panel which included member of NASA, to explore propulsion systems options for V/STOL aircraft. He also served on a number of important committees. He was able to pass on his technical experience during a lecture he gave at the Naval Academy on Applied Fluid Mechanics. Frank was highly respected by his peers and division members, both for his management style and technical knowledge. When speaking to family and friends, Frank would mention how honored he was that his career afforded him the opportunity to contribute to the defense of his country. He always expressed these feelings in a straight forward, unpretentious manner, indicative of the way he lived his life. He retired in 1980. Upon retirement he became the Vintner at the family-run Nittany Valley Winery. Some of these wines won state awards. He also continued his life-long passion for wood-working. He delighted in working in his basement work-shop producing furniture for members of his family. Memorial contributions can be made to the Trinity Lutheran Church, 2221 N. Oak Lane, State College, PA 16803 or to the local PAWS organization at 1401 Trout Road, State College, PA 16801. Arrangements are under the care of Koch Funeral Home, State College. Online condolences may be made at

Published in Centre Daily Times on Oct. 16, 2013
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