Francis graduated into heaven on the 22nd of April in Sun City, AZ. Fran was born on the family farm in Cooks, MI in 1931. He was the third of four sons born to Albert and Vera Davidson. He would have turned 89 in May 2020.
Growing up, he worked hard on the family farm and enjoyed sports and journalism in high school. He played basketball all four years of high school and captained the team his senior year. Fran was also editor of the school paper. He attended college to learn how to grade milk for the local dairy farmers.
Fran married his high school sweetheart, Ila E. McGahan in 1950. He claims she asked him to get married because she feared he would join the service and go off to war.
They have a son, Wayne (Joan) Davidson of Salem, OR, and daughters Debi (Allan) Stone of Anchorage, AK and Colleen (Walt) Ward of Kenai, AK.
They moved from Michigan to Alaska in February 1961 settling in the Kenai area. Fran worked in sales, and the oil and gas industry, and then moved to Oregon in 1971 where he worked in physical plant operations, and eventually returned to Alaska in 1977 and went to work for the Tesoro Refinery in Nikiski. After retiring in December of 1993, he and Ila did the snowbird thing for four years. They moved permanently to Sun City, AZ in 1997.
He enjoyed hunting and fishing in his younger years and later turned to gardening and woodworking to stay busy when Ila was not dragging him all over the country.
One of Fran’s favorite poems his family would often hear him quote was Rudyard Kipling’s “If”. His favorite stanza was:
If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you, but make allowance for their doubting too;
Preceding him in death were his parents, brothers Willard and Donald, Donald’s wife Patricia, nephew Larry Davidson and granddaughter Melissa Davidson. His wife Ila passed in 2012.
He is survived by his three children and their spouses, 7 grandchildren; Sherlai Breitling, Doug (Erika) Davidson, Bethany (Jared) O’Hagan, Wally (Linnea) Ward, Rocky (Alyssa) Ward, Dusty (Sierra) Ward, Kelsey Stone (Chris Jensen). And 9 great grandchildren; Kailee & Madylin Breitling, Connor, Avery & Faith Davidson, Fiona & June O’Hagan and Tobias & Ila Ward. Brother and sister-in-law, John and Barb Davidson. Nieces Mari Jo (David) Stewart and Lynda (Bill) Adams. Nephews Michael (Debbie), Patrick (Susan) and Kevin (Christine) Davidson and their families. His in-laws, Norm and Lois McGahan of Sun City, AZ, Richard and Karen McGahan, Dale and Donna McGahan, Jack and Betty McGahan and Carol and Beaver Broussard, all from Alaska and their families (nieces and nephews to numerous too note, but loved just the same).
The family would like to give a heartfelt thanks to Sun Valley Lodge for their compassionate care of Fran for the past three years while allowing him to live independently and with dignity.
If you desire, donations can be made to the Davidson, Ditchen, Taylor Memorial Scholarship fund at Salem Academy, 942 Lancaster Drive NE, Salem, Oregon 97301.
His cremations will be placed next to his wife at the McGahan Cemetery in Nikiski, AK at a later date.