William E. “Bill” Franklin of Jamestown died Dec. 15 at St. Vincent Hospice in Indianapolis. He was 90.
Born Oct. 27, 1923, in Hart County, Ky., he was a son of the late William and Lillian (Turner) Franklin. He married Margaret “Marty” (Whitecotton) Franklin on Aug. 9, 1947, in Crawfordsville. She died Dec. 14, 2003.
Mr. Franklin helped his father on the farm near Whitesville from an early age. He enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Force in 1942 and served as a flight engineer on B-17 and B-32 bombers in the Pacific Theatre during World War II. He attained the rank of technical sergeant and was last stationed at Pine Castle AAF in Orlando, Fla. Following his discharge, he returned home to his father’s farm. For a period of time, he also worked at Detroit Diesel Allison Division of General Motors in Indianapolis.
The Franklins lived in Crawfordsville when they were first married then moved to Jefferson Township in rural Boone County. He took great pride in his home and farm for more than 65 years. On their farm, north of Advance, Mr. and Mrs. Franklin raised corn, soybeans, wheat, and oats. They also raised livestock for many years. He was committed to maintaining his equipment and keeping abreast of the latest in farm technology. He was particularly proud of the farm being featured on the front page of the Wall Street Journal.
Mr. Franklin’s son, John Franklin, has been an integral part of the farm since boyhood. Jane and Walter DeHaven and their family have also been very important to the success of the Franklin farm for more than 60 years.
Mr. Franklin was elected to serve as a director of the Advance State Bank and as a director of the Boone County State Bank. He started as a minuteman from his district for the Boone County Rural Electric Member Corporation (R.E.M.C.) and was later elected as a director and served there for many years.