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Franklin Crankshaw, age 99, of Grand Rapids, formerly of Greenville, passed away on Sunday, May 16, 2021 in Grand Rapids.  The son of Franklin & Lula (VanBrocklin) Crankshaw, he was born on November 12, 1921 in Holton, Michigan, and lived in and around Greenville for most of his life.

As a young man, Frank worked in the Civilian Conversation Corps camps, later serving in World War II with the U.S. Army as a truck driver and heavy equipment operator.  On July 12, 1945, he married Verna May Crane and together they raised four children and celebrated 75 years of marriage last year!  Frank retired from the former Gibson Refrigerator Company after a 30 year career in factory management.  Frank loved family above all else. With family, he enjoyed fishing, hunting, camping, travel and golf.

He was preceded in death by his parents;  eight brothers and sisters;  a son, Hal Franklin Crankshaw; and a daughter-in-law, Drella Crankshaw. Surviving are his wife of nearly 76 years, Verna M. Crankshaw;  their children, John & Judy Crankshaw of Grand Rapids,  Phyllis & Brian Moser of Greenville;  Don Crankshaw of Cedar Springs;  a daughter-in-law, Mary Moon Crankshaw;  four grandchildren;  nine great-grandchildren;  two great-great-grandchildren;  and many nieces and nephews.

Due to continued restrictions on gatherings, private funeral services will be held at Christiansen’s Michigan Cremation & Funeral Care, 511 S. Franklin Street, Greenville, with the Rev. Sue Petro, Emmanuel Hospice Chaplain, officiating.  Public graveside services are at 2:00 p.m. on Wednesday, May 19, 2021 at East Montcalm Cemetery (just north of Greenville on M-91).

Instead of flowers, contributions in Frank’s memory to the Flat River Community Library would be appreciated.  To send a message of sympathy to the family, sign Frank’s online guest book, or to share a favorite memory, please visit:

Funeral arrangements are entrusted to Christiansen’s Michigan Cremation & Funeral Care, Greenville, (616) 754-5638, exclusive providers of Veterans Funeral Care.


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3 Condolences

  1. Carey on May 17, 2021 at 9:31 pm

    Love you grandpa

  2. Barb Zimmerman on May 20, 2021 at 11:33 am

    I just read in the paper that Frank has passed away. I’m so sorry for his family and friends. He lived a long life to 99 years. He was always so nice. RIP Frank.

  3. Kennetta Dines Lemon on June 24, 2021 at 6:10 pm

    Read about your father passing. He was a friendly, cheerful man when us girls stayed at the house. May his family have peace and healing at this time.

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