Dennis Edward "Denny" Franks

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1936 to 2014

We lost our beloved Denny who was 78 years old when he passed on Friday morning at 5:26 AM May 23, 2014. He passed away peacefully at home with his wife by his side, due to complications from Dementia.

He leaves precious memories with his wife Robin; Jim (oldest son) Jim's wife Barbara, their children A.J. and Deni Marie; Julie Ann, her husband Dave, their children Courtney, Whitney, Alex and Darby; youngest son Patric.

On June 1st 1936 Denny was born in Detroit, Michigan to Edward and Zella Clair Franks. Denny had two siblings, the oldest Betty Lee, and Jim (Jimmy).

When Denny was 18 he joined the Navy for 4 years as a Electrician/ Engineer. Returning home he moved to West Covina, and raised his three children with his first wife Carol.

Denny worked several years at the Pontiac Car Dealership in West Covina. He loved the business!! This started his passion to own his own store then become a car dealer. His dream came true, moving to Santa Barbara he had the opportunity to purchase Toyota of Santa Barbara. Denny had been Dealer Principal for over 30 years. Through the years the Dealership had many outstanding awards for excellence. One of the highest honors was awarded 1999 Top Gun from America Import Auto Association.

Denny was a very humble man, a man of very few words, a very patriotic man, he was very proud.

He started with nothing, worked hard for his dreams. He was extremely grateful to be given the opportunity for his success.

Denny believed in giving back to the community, he supported many organizations with time and donations.

Denny served on the Board of Directors for Goleta Valley Cottage Hospital and was a major donor. He was President of the Kiwanis in Goleta, supporting Girls, Inc., supported activities with UCSB, high schools, middle schools in Santa Barbara. He donated cars for hole-in-one charity golf tournaments.

He was voted man of the year from City of Goleta, Congressional Recognition, California Legislature Assembly, Philanthropist of the year, Honorary Service Award from California Congress of parent teachers and students.

Denny had other passions which was dancing. He joined Arthur Murray dance studio in Santa Barbara, then fell in love with his dance instructor Robin. They have been married 26 years.

He loved flying, he took lessons and became an instrument rated pilot, and flew his Piper Arrow airplane. Denny loved golf, Denny and Robin were members of Montecito Golf Club for many years.

Denny was deeply loved by his family and many in the community. He will be greatly missed. We know he is at peace now.

Arrangement by Welch-Ryce-Haider Funeral Chapels.


Funeral Home
Welch-Ryce-Haider Funeral Chapels - Goleta
Santa Barbara, CA 93111
(805) 965-5145
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Published in The Santa Barbara News-Press Online Edition from May 30 to June 3, 2014
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