The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

November 15, 2012

Mr. Francis “Fran” Warren Hoad

Published 11-15-12


Enid News and Eagle

ENID — Funeral service for Mr. Francis “Fran” Warren Hoad, 90, of Enid, will be 10 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 17, 2012, at Brown-Cummings Funeral Home Chapel, with Pastor Pat Sutherlin officiating.

Burial will follow in Enid Cemetery under the direction of Brown-Cummings Funeral Home.

Military graveside honors will be conducted by Vance Air Force Base Silver Talon Honor Guard.

The family will receive visitors from 6-8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 16, 2012, at Brown-Cummings Funeral Home.

Fran was born in Buffalo, N.Y., to Frank and Marie Hoad and was the older brother to Bob and Norm Hoad, and passed away Saturday, Nov. 10, 2012.

He has always had a love for flying and while in high school he worked to earn money to pay for flight lessons.

When World War II broke out he joined the U.S. Army Air Corp. During his time of training he was stationed at Vance Air Force Base for flight school.

It was here, while attending a USO Dance at the old Youngblood Hotel, he met Martha Bingham.

Fran went off to serve in the war as a co-pilot. On one of his return flights from a bombing mission his damaged plane went down in the English Channel.

He and the surviving members of his crew were picked up by the Germans. He spent 13 months in a German Prison Camp.

While in that camp Martha wrote him daily letters encouraging him.

On his return, Martha and he married in Enid, where they made their home raising their three children. He and Martha have been married for 67 years.

Fran belonged to the Air Force Reserve after the war and achieved the rank of Major.

Fran’s bravery and commitment in service to his country, family and church have been exemplified by the earning of a Purple Heart, the Distinguished Flying Cross (an amazing story in itself), the provision of a home and education for his children and the work he and Martha did in serving as charter members of Willow Road Christian Church.

Fran and Martha currently belong to Central Christian Church, where he sang in the choir for many, many years.

Working as a mail carrier (a U.S. Mule as he fondly called it) for the U.S. Post Office until retirement, Fran made many friends not only with those who received mail, but also all the dogs along the way. He has always had a fondness for dogs.

While in prison camp he received 14 days in solitary confinement for drawing one of the guard dogs goose-stepping behind the guard.

He later named his own dog, Fritz, in honor of that guard dog.

Fran’s loving family will greatly miss him, but have many wonderful memories of family 4th of July celebrations, camping trips and the great pride he had for them.

He leaves his wife, Martha and his three children, Ray Hoad (wife Edie), Alan Hoad (wife Beth) and Jennie Hoad O’Neal (husband Mike).

Also his grandchildren, Emily Hoad, Cheryl Hamilton (and Andy), Jennifer Reyes (Jose), Brandi Nortman (Michael), Michael Hoad, Katie Bender Thomas (Craig) and his eight great-grandchildren will miss and always cherish his memory.

Special thanks to Meagan Hood, who faithfully and lovingly helped to care for Fran for the past three years. And of course, thanks to his best friend and companion, Fritz.

Memorials may be made to Salvation Army, with Brown-Cummings Funeral Home serving as custodian of the funds.

Condolences may be made to the family online at Brown-Cummings.com.

(Submitted by family)