Milwaukee 2015 Reunion Update!

The pins have arrived!

2015 Milwaukee Pin

In the  Franklin Newsletter Fall 2014 we announced that the 2015 Franklin Reunion will be in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, July 16-19.  I see that some of you have already made reservations at the Sheraton Milwaukee Brookfield Hotel (262) 364-1100  Make sure you mention the “USS Franklin Room Block” to get the special $109.00/ night room rate.  You can also reserve a room by following the link:

Weekend activities include exploring the Milwaukee lake shore.

Milwaukee Art Museum and War memorial

We will be mailing out the registration form in the spring newsletter.  We will also be posting it to this site so check back often.

We are looking forward to seeing you all in July!


Obituary, Irving L. Kidwell

Irving L. Kidwell passed away April 26, 2013, at the Mandrin House in Annapolis, MD.

Mr. Kidwell served in the Navy on the USS Franklin, CV 13, in World War II, where he was awarded an Honorable Discharge and Bronze Star Metal from the United States Navy. He served in the Lions Club, State Roads Commission and Chamber of Commerce. He was a Banker, Real Estate Broker and a General Contractor.

Mr. Kidwell is survived by his wife of 53 years, Ida May Kidwell; a son, Leroy W. Kidwell and wife Karen; three daughters, Susan K. Kidwell, Laura F. Strickland and her husband Manning, Catherine L. Kidwell and her husband Mark Puleo; a stepdaughter, Blanche Radich, a stepson, Charles Sellner and his wife, Barbara; and one brother, Dellburt Kidwell and his wife Beverly; 15 grandchildren, 35 great grandchildren and 2 great-great grandchildren.

Obituary, Andre J. Vincent

MANCHESTER – Andre J. Vincent, 89, died Jan. 4, 2015 at Concord Hospital following a brief illness.

He was born in Manchester on Aug. 10, 1925, the son of William and Germaine (Belanger) Vincent and had been a lifelong resident of Manchester.

He served his country in the U.S. Navy aboard the USS Franklin, which was dive bombed by the Japanese during World War II.

Prior to his retirement he was the owner and operator of Andre’s Hair Salon in Milford for more than 50 years.

Family members include two sisters, Carmen McInnis and Simone P. Richard, one sister-in-law, Theresa Vincent, all of Manchester, six nieces, Carol Scott, Janice Bantis, Priscilla Vincent, Diane McInnis, Diane Nascimento, Denise Dunham, two nephews, Alfred “Buster” McInnis, Greg McInnis, several great nieces, great nephews and several cousins.

He was predeceased by one brother, Conrad Vincent.


services: Calling hours will be on Thursday, 4 to 8 p.m. at J. N. Boufford & Sons Funeral Home, 110 Bridge St., Manchester.

A mass of Christian burial will be celebrated on Friday at 10 a.m. in St. Raphael Church, 103 Walker St., Manchester. Committal prayers and Entombment will follow in Mt. Calvary Cemetery Mausoleum.

In lieu of flowers donations may be made to Brigham & Women’s Hospital to support pancreatic cancer research, 116 Huntington Ave., 3rd Floor, Boston MA. 02116.

For more information and online guestbook please visit
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Obituary, George William Rayhill

George William Rayhill
Bill Rayhill passed away comfortably November 24th. His family was ever present, especially in the last few months visiting with him to share thoughts and memories of a life well-lived. Bill was born in Moravia, Iowa on January 17th 1921 and settled in San Francisco after World War II.
Ever modest, Bill took little credit for his achievements. Bill graduated from Cornell College of Mt. Vernon Iowa in 1941 at the age of 20. He entered the Navy Aircorp in World War II as a lieutenant. While serving as a dive bomber in the Pacific Theatre, he was awarded the Bronze Star for heroic action on the U.S.S. Franklin. Bill returned home to start a family and launched a successful 46 year career in the insurance industry.
In 1946, Bill married Helen Loraine Bidelman and had three children, Sally Anne Rayhill, William Charles Rayhill and Robert Edward Rayhill. Bill is survived by Sally Rayhill Dellanini and William Charles Rayhill. Bill and Helen shared 28 years together raising a family and growing the family insurance business. Their spare time was spent almost exclusively in their shared love of golf. They were both members of local golf clubs.
Bill honored his father who was a Methodist Minister by serving the Methodist Church for over 40 years. His service included membership on the Board of Directors of the California and Nevada Methodist Homes.
In 1975, Bill married Vivian Bushnell. They shared a thirty-three year marriage enjoying world travel, golf, the San Francisco 49’ers and the San Francisco Giants. With his marriage Bill became part of a large extended family, with many children calling him “Grandpa”. Bill was loved by Vivian’s children and their spouses; Lee and Karen Bushnell, Kathy and Howard Langfelder, Andrea Bushnell and Hany Abdel Gawad, Patricia and Bruce Schafer. Bill will be missed by his grandchildren Michael Langfelder, Elise Saporta, Carla Saporta Cheng and Tarik Abdel Gawad.
Bill was a very intelligent person who pursued knowledge and understanding to succeed in life. He was extremely responsible and disciplined in all his endeavors.
Services will be private. Donations may be made to any preferred charity.

Published in San Francisco Chronicle on Dec. 28, 2014
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Obituary, John F. McAvoy

JOHN F. McAVOY passed away on 12/16/2014 at age 91. He was born on 8/1/23 in Everett, MA. He was a long time resident of Riverside, CA. He passed away at home with his wife and family by his side. John and Helen were in their 70th year of marriage. John was a 52 year member of the Knights of Columbus, Council 1638, having served in local and state offices. He was also a 50 year parishioner of St. Francis de Sales Catholic Church, serving in many capacities. John is survived by his loving wife, Helen Virginia Reaver McAvoy of Riverside, CA, daughters Virginia M. Blumenthal, Esq (Lathell) of Riverside, CA, and Lesley M. Baptiste, Ph. D (Prentice) of League City, TX. , sister Lois O’Connell of Everett, MA. Papa John had a special bond with his 7 grandchildren and 7 great grandchildren and is also survived by many nieces and nephews. John is predeceased by his parents John F McAvoy, Sr. and Jennie C. Gerrish, sisters Jeanette McAvoy and Mary Theresa Petersen. John was a proud veteran of WWII and Korean Conflict, having served in the Navy and Air Force for a total of 21 years, 6 months, 12 days. He survived action on the USS Franklin CV13 during WWII, where approximately 950 men were killed about 50 miles off Japan on 3/19/1945. Services will be held on Friday December 26 at 10 am at St Francis de Sales Catholic Church. Burial following mass at 12 noon, located at Riverside National Cemetery. In Lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial contributions to St. Francis de Sales School, John and Helen McAvoy Technology Fund, 4205 Mulberry St., Riverside CA 92501. “Well done, Good and Faithful Servant!” PRESTON & SIMONS MORTUARY, Funeral Directors 951-683-7410 – See more at:

Obituary, Gerard T. Gillis

Gerard T. Gillis
3/6/1926 – 11/15/2014

Gerard T. Gillis, 88 of Roseville, Calif., passed away on November 15, 2014 of natural causes. He was born on March 6, 1926 to Anthony and Lydia Gills, both deceased. He leaves behind his wife of 58 years, Marie Gillis.

He first served in the U.S. Navy on the U.S.S. Franklin in World War II. He then joined the Army during the Korean Conflict. He later joined Army Special Forces, “The Green Berets” and did two tours in Vietnam. He retired from military service in 1971. He started his own pest control company and was a part of many organizations to include; Chamber of Commerce, PTA, Veterans of Foreign Wars and many church organizations most notably the Knights of Columbus where he held many positions.

He is survived by his wife Marie Gillis of Roseville, Calif., daughters Sandy Militello of Folsom, Calif., Raven and Mary Gillis both of Roseville, Calif., granddaughters Sarah Chang of San Jose, Calif., Danielle Gonsalves of Reno, Nev., and Anastasia Hoang of Citrus Heights, Calif., and great-grandson Tolby Hoang also of Citrus Heights, Calif.

Visitation is November 24, 2014 from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., A Rosary from 7:00 to 7:30 pm at St. Clare’s Church in Roseville. Funeral Mass will be November 25, 2014 at 10:30 am at St. Clare’s Church. Burial at Calvary Catholic Cemetery at 2:00 p.m.
Funeral Services taken care of by Lambert Funeral Home in Roseville, Calif.
Published in Gold Country Media Newspapers on Nov. 21, 2014
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