Franklin Mason

Obituary
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Franklin G. Mason MULLINS - Dr. Franklin G. Mason, 94, of Mullins, widower of Lucy Reames Mason, passed away Friday, January 11, 2019 at McLeod Regional Medical Center after a brief illness. Dr. Mason was born November 20, 1924 in Mullins to the late Dr. Edison Issac Mason and the late Mary McMillan Gasque Mason. In 1941, Dr. Mason was awarded the honor Eagle Scout, the first person in Mullins to receive the award. He graduated Mullins High School in 1942. Following high school, Dr. Mason volunteered for World War II in 1943, he served 3 1/2 years. During his time in the Pacific during the occupation of Japan, he served as 1st Lt. with the Corps of Engineers and was a paratrooper for the 11th Airborne Division. After the war Dr. Mason taught 8th and 9th grade math from 1947-48. After this he completed his degree at Clemson University in 1949, Emory University School of Dentistry in 1953; and in 1980 receives an Honorary Doctor of Humanities from Charleston Southern University. Dr. Mason practiced dentistry in Mullins 65 years, since 1953, and had still worked several hours a day four days a week. He is a Past President of Pee Dee Dental Society and Past President S. C. Dental Association. Through the years he stayed active in the S. C. Dental Association and has received honors and recognitions. He has been a member of the American College of Dentist, the International College of Dentist and more recently honored with The S. C. Dental Association Presidential Citation. In 2013 he received a letter of congratulations from Governor Haley for 60 years of dental practice and in 2014 awarded The Distinguished Dentist Citation from the SC Section of the Pierre Fauchard Academy. Dr. Mason was a Baptist layman, active in Mullins First Baptist Church where he has been a member 85 years and active deacon 65 years. He has served in his church in many offices including Sunday School director, VBS Director, Sunday School teacher, Chairman of Deacons, Chairman of the Finance committee and on three major building committees. He has been on 35 foreign mission trips as a missionary dentist to eight countries and estimates he has extracted over 10,000 teeth. Dr. Mason has served four terms 20 years on the Board of Trustees of Baptist College, now Charleston Southern University, including 3 years as chairman and one year as secretary. He is the donor of The Mason Family Endowed Scholarship at Charleston Southern and is on the Board of Visitors and a member of the BUC Club. He was still an active member of the Mullins Lions Club. Joined in 1953 and through the years has served as club president, secretary, bulletin editor for over 50 years and director of the club's "Run for Sight" 36 years. Mason was a Past District Governor, Past President of S.C. Lions Eye Bank and the SC Lions Charitable Association. He has been honored as the Lion of the Year in SC and is in the S.C. Lions Hall of Fame. Dr. Mason was elected to the high office of Lions International Director in 1988 and served two years as a member and chairman of the International Finance committee. As an International Director, he was keynote speaker at 35 Lions state/district conventions and visited 8 countries. He is a recipient of the Lions Ambassador of Goodwill Award, the highest award given in Lionism Dr. Mason was an avid runner for over 30 years having started running in 1982 at age 58. He ran 740 races of various distances with over 400 first place age group awards. He ran his first marathon at age 60 and ran 120 full marathons, the last at age 85. His best marathon time was 3 hours 24 minutes at Va. Beach in 1992 at age 67. During his running career he ran a total of over 53,000 miles racing and training. Still holds several state records all since age 75. Has been Director of Lions Club "Run for Sight" for 36 years. Awarded #1 runner in his age group in the state of SC in 2001. Elected to SC Runners Hall of Fame in 2001. He used many of his marathons to raise money for Lions foundations, both state and international, and raised over $120,000 over a period of 18 years. The SC Lions Foundation's highest honor is named the "Dr. Franklin G. Mason Fellowship" in his honor. Surviving Dr. Mason are his Children: Mary Mason King of Lexington, Lucy Anne Ham Bridges of Florence, Deby Mason Strickland ( Allen) of Marion; his Grandchildren: Johbe King (Caroline), Mason King (Kellie), Mary Costa King Marsh (Chris), James Franklin King, Scott Ham (Chau), Matt Ham (Stephanie), Ben Ham, Sloan Ham Evans (Chris), Anna Strickland Isgett (Matt), Sydney Strickland Hooks (Jarrott), Courtney Hayes, Keller Hayes Sutherland (Justin); 14 Great Grandchildren; a Special Friend and Companion, Daphne Brady Capps, and a Dear Friend and Dental Associate for 34 years, Gayle Ham Hayes. Dr. Mason was predeceased, in addition to his wife, Lucy Farrow Reames Mason, a daughter, Frances "Fran" Mason Hayes, and a brother, Edison John Mason. Visitation will be held Sunday, January 13 from 1:30 P.M. until 3:30 P.M. in the Sanctuary of Mullins First Baptist Church. A funeral service celebrating the life of Dr. Mason will follow at 3:30 P.M. in the Sanctuary of Mullins First Baptist Church, with Rev. Robbie Baxley and Rev. Matt Ham officiating. Dr. Mason will be laid to rest in Cedardale Cemetery following the service, with Cox-Collins Funeral Home of Mullins assisting the family. Memorials may be made to Mullins First Baptist Church, PO Box 443, Mullins, SC 29574, the International Association Of Lions Clubs, Mullins Lions Club, 2545 Capps Corner Rd., Mullins, SC or to Charleston Southern University, Office of Development, PO Box 118087, Charleston, SC 29423.
Funeral Home
Cox Collins Funeral Home - Mullins
715 S Main Street
Mullins, SC 29574
843-464-9611
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Published in The State on Jan. 13, 2019
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