Howard Rogers Francis left his body peacefully while sleeping May 11th, 2021 one month after his 94th birthday. The youngest of 4 children, his family moved to Poplar Bluff, Mo when he was in the 5th grade. He graduated in 1945 from PBHS where he lettered every year in football and track.
After high school he joined the United States Merchant Marines and served on the SS Grants Pass during WWII. He was at the wheel when the ship road out a devasting typhoon that struck Okinawa harbor and damaged many ships that were not able to get back out to sea before it struck. Upon leaving the Merchant Marines he joined the US Army and was stationed at Fort Knox. While there he married his high school sweetheart, Dorothy Helen Greeson, also of Poplar Bluff. He was honorably discharged from the Army as a Staff Sargent in 1948. Mr. Francis retired from the US Postal Service as a rural carrier after 38 years in the postal service. Howard and Dotty were devout Christians and active members of the First United Methodist Church and the Wesleyan Sunday School class in Poplar Bluff.
Mr. Francis is survived by three sons and their spouses, Steve and Carol Francis of Hermosa Beach, CA, David and Jeanne Francis of Frisco, TX, Jeffrey Francis and Efrat Ben Nun of Ra'anana, Israel, eight grandchildren and nine great grandchildren.
Howard Francis is lovingly remembered by his family and all whose life he touched as a kind and generous man always willing to offer help and tell a story.
His love was unconditional.
A memorial service will be held at the First United Methodist Church in Poplar Bluff, Mo. on Saturday, September 11, 2021 at 1pm. The family suggests gifts be given to the Bob Becker Memorial Stipend at First United Methodist Church.