DALEY, Francis Edward Jr. 94, died in St. Petersburg, on Monday, Sept. 23, 2013, after a brief illness. Born in Lusk, WY, to Helena Rita Sheridan and Francis Edward Daley Sr. on Feb. 21, 1919, "Popi" Daley was the descendant of a long line of pioneer ranchers in the Wyoming area. His father became one of the first victims of the 1918 flu pandemic prior to his birth so Mr. Daley was raised by his grandmother Mary Goddard and step grandfather Daniel E. Goddard on the Goddard ranch in Lusk. Leaving the ranch in 1940, he enlisted in the Navy where he served for 20 years specializing in torpedoes both as an instructor and as Chief Torpedoman in military combat including Pearl Harbor. "Popi" served aboard the USS Sperry and Orion and from 1957 to his retirement from the Navy served as a naval recruiter in Portland, OR. One of "Popi's" favorite deployments was his time in the Panama Canal Zone where he and his wife met their lifelong Navy friends Robert & Nita Schlich-enmaier. Mr. Daley recently spoke to a group of Naval Chief graduates at MacDill Air Force Base regarding his experiences as a Pearl Harbor survivor. This was a highlight for him and he was very impressed with the "new Navy." In 1945, he met and married Frances L. Skedgell, also a World War II Navy veteran. He and his beloved, "Franny" were together until her death in 2007. After retiring from the Navy, Mr. Daley moved to the St. Petersburg area, where he returned to school to embark on an engineering career which spanned 27 years. Specializing in micro circuitry assembly he became a fully qualified NASA trained inspector/instructor in his area of expertise. One of his career highlights was working on Apollo 11. He also served as an electronic consultant during this time conducting seminars throughout the United States and was the developer and patent holder for a cleaning system for printed wiring and surface mount micro circuitry assemblies. Mr. Daley lived independently until the day of his sudden illness on Sept. 7th, thoroughly enjoying his own apartment, 2013 Subaru, endless "projects" at his daughter's house and "retrofitting" everything in sight. He is survived by his daughter, Faith Bennett of St. Petersburg; and grandchildren, Michelle Fincher, Jennifer Clutterbuck, Kira Bennett, Robin Bennett and Thomas Bennett. A private family service will be conducted at War Veterans Memorial Park. In lieu of flowers, the family requests all donations be sent to Morningstar School of Pinellas Park for special needs children. Visit the family's online guestbook at www.andersonmcqueen.com.
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Published in the Tampa Bay Times on Sept. 28, 2013