Farming Rural 04

Frank A. Cole, Jr.

February 1, 1933 ~ February 22, 2022 (age 89)


CONNEAUT — Frank Austin Cole Jr., 89, of Conneaut, died Tuesday, Feb. 22, 2022, at the Ashtabula County Nursing Home in Kingsville.

He was born Feb. 1, 1933, in Monroe Township, the seventh of Frank Sr. and Theodora Kent Cole's 15 children.

Although he was a full-time factory worker, Frank was a farmer at heart. His CB handle in the 1970s was "The Happy Hayseed." On his little 29-acre farm in Monroe Township from 1965 to 1988, he raised dairy and beef cows, pigs, corn, oats, hay and four children. His happy places were in a field on a tractor and watching the world from his front porch. Frank's goals were to show a profit at least one year on the farm and to turn out hard-working children who would follow his footsteps to Heaven.

Frank supported his kids' varied activities, which is how he ended up spending every wedding anniversary for two decades in a 4-H cow barn at the Ashtabula County Fair, getting rooked into hauling luggage for 140 high-schoolers to band camp in a cattle trailer, attending band and choir concerts that made him grimace, and basketball and football games, track meets and wrestling matches, which he preferred.

Frank was a 1952 graduate of Rowe High School, where he set records while running track and field. He enlisted in the U.S. Army from 1953 to 1955, serving in the motor pool while stationed in Germany. He was honorably discharged with the rank of corporal.

After service, he returned to his parents' farm in Monroe Township. Then came the day that David Burch introduced his sister to Frank, who courted — or pestered — Patricia A. Burch Hannam of Ashtabula until she said yes. They were married Aug. 10, 1957, at Ashtabula First Church of the Nazarene. They would have celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary this year.

Frank hired on at Exomet Inc., a foundry in Conneaut, and later was transferred to Air Products and Chemicals as a foreman in Greenville, Pa., where he and Patti moved in 1988 after all four children were out of school. They moved back to Conneaut in 2017, several years after Frank retired.

In retirement, he restored his brother Tom's antique John Deere Model 50 tractor; built shelves, clocks, dollhouses and other woodworking pieces for his kids and grandkids; and collected John Deere memorabilia. He was Mr. Fix-it when his kids needed something repaired—again. It might not look pretty when he was done, but it would work.

Frank and Patti were longtime members of the Wesleyan Methodist Church in Conneaut.

Survivors include his wife; three sons, Burton (Teresa) Cole of Garrettsville, Timothy Cole of Conneaut and Daniel (Mary Jane) Cole of Conneaut; a daughter, Martha (Randy) Fertig of Conneaut; 11 grandchildren, Melissa Cole, Jeremy Heidrich, Christopher (Amber Brickman) Fox, Brandon Cole, Courtney Edge, Caitlin Cole, Casey Fox, Breanna Cole, Joshua (Laurie) Schlaich, Allison (Lance) Butler and Jordan (Allyson Candella) Fertig; and five great-grandchildren with two more on the way. He also is survived by eight sisters, Evelyn Burchfield, Carolyn "Connie" Rodgers, June Chess, Arlene Cole, Patricia Horwood, Dorma Ebersole and Linda Fralic, all of Conneaut, and Janice Patterson of Stoneboro, Pa.; as well as numerous nieces and nephews, and great-nieces and great-nephews.

Besides his parents, he was preceded in death by one grandson, Joshua Cole; one granddaughter, Victoria; three sisters, Marian Sammis, Catherine La Place and Shirley Huston; and three brothers, William, Merle and Thomas Cole.

Friends and family may call 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday at Marcy Funeral Home, 208 Liberty St., Conneaut, where a service will be held 11 a.m. Monday, officiated by the Rev. Michael Nevseta, pastor of Wesleyan Methodist Church and Frank's unofficial "fourth son" who started hanging out at the Cole farm in his teens.

Burial with military honors will follow in Monroe Township Kelloggsville Cemetery.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Wesleyan Methodist Church, 315 E. Main Road, Conneaut, OH 44030.


To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Frank A. Cole, Jr., please visit our floral store.


February 27, 2022

2:00 PM to 4:00 PM
Marcy Funeral Home
208 Liberty Street
Conneaut, OH 44030

Funeral Service
February 28, 2022

11:00 AM
Marcy Funeral Home
208 Liberty Street
Conneaut, OH 44030

February 28, 2022

12:45 PM
Kelloggsville Cemetery, Monroe Township

American Legion Service
February 28, 2022

1:00 PM
Kelloggsville Cemetery, Monroe Township


Wesleyan Methodist Church
Conneaut OH 44030

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