Frank J. Griffin

Posted: Sunday, December 19, 2010

Longtime Soldotna resident, Frank J. Griffin, 86, died Wednesday, Dec. 15, 2010, at Heritage Place in Soldotna.

Per Mr. Griffin 's request, no formal services will be held.

Mr. Griffin was born Dec. 20, 1923, to John B. and Vivian (Nunneley) Griffin, in Sacramento, Calif. He moved to Paradise, Calif., and attended school in Paradise and Chico, Calif. Mr. Griffin entered the Navy Jan. 1, 1941. He participated in Naval peacetime tour of the South Pacific countries and islands after basic training in Hawaii. Mr. Griffin served 4 years and 8 months and was discharged Oct. 10, 1945, at the end of World War II. He served in many theaters of the war, including the South Pacific, the East Coast of U.S., the Sahara Desert in conjunction with Britain's action there, and back to the Pacific, ending with his service with the Underwater Demolition Team that was created the last two years of the war.

Frank married Georgia Gray in Seattle, Wash,, Sept. 2, 1945. He bought a fishing boat and moved to Ketchikan. After the birth of their daughter, Isle, he sold his boat and moved to Petersburg following his employment with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Pacific American Fisheries. After the birth of their son, Eric, they moved to Fairbanks until the children were finished with school. Twin girls Dawn and Inga as well as their son, Sven, were born during this period. Mr. Griffin worked for Pacific Sound and Drake on the DEW line, R&M Engineering and Geophysical Institute of The University of Alaska Fairbanks.

In 1977 he designed and had a 52-foot boat named the "Grafin" built. He and his wife moved aboard and lived on the boat in Ketchikan until moving to Soldotna in June of 1997 where they currently resided. In 1988, Mr. Griffin fell on the ice on a tug boat while working with a barge for Clyde Cowan Tug Company and injured his back, which led to him getting back surgery. This injury was the start of many years in pain, further surgeries, and eventually retirement due to physical inability to work. Frank moved to Heritage Place in October of 2010. He received excellent treatment and care while living at Heritage Place.

Mr. Griffin was preceded in death by his grandmother, Augusta Johanson Thulin; mother, Vivian Thulin-Griffin-Collins-Nunneley; father, John B. Griffin (stepmother, Grace); son, Eric, sister, Lorna; brothers, John Griffin, of Anchorage; Clarence Collins; and niece Nancy Griffin.

He is survived by his wife, Georgia of Soldotna; daughters, Isle Burk and husband, Chuck, of North Pole; Dawn Ruhkick, of Kailua, Hawaii; Inga Marciniec and husband, Greg, of Oceanview, Hawaii; son, Sven Griffin, of Nenana; sister, Margaret "Sally" Wettstein, of Utah; brothers, Norman Griffin and his wife, Dellie, of Spokane, Wash.; Melvin and Kenneth Griffin, of California; Jim Nunneley, of Bonners Ferry, Idaho; five grandchildren, and nine great grandchildren.

Condolences may be sent to Georgia Griffin, P.O. Box 1406 Soldotna, Alaska 99669.

Arrangements made by Peninsula Memorial Chapel.

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