Obituary of Franklin Delano Howlett
Franklin Delano Howlett was a beloved great grandfather, grandfather, father and husband during his incredible 89 years of life. Most remarkable was sharing 63 years of marriage with his wife, Kathryn Howlett who preceded him in death. He was born on November 30, 1933 in Riesel, Texas as one of 12 children to his father, William Fletcher Howlett and his mother, Mae Jane Howlett.
We will remember Franklin for his kind & giving heart, his gentle soul and his wonderful stories, from growing up on a small farm with his favorite lynx cat to his loving memories of his early days in marriage & travel. It was always easy to sit with him and find yourself talking for hours about his life experiences, the people he met along the way and life lessons learned.
Franklin graduated Morehead High School where he met and married his high school sweetheart, Kathryn (Williams). Upon graduation he enlisted in the US Navy where he served until the mid 1960’s. Upon honorable discharge from military service, Franklin joined the Dallas fire department as one of the first African American members of the unit. It was there that he met one of his early mentors who helped him obtain his Master Plumber’s license. He was able to leverage his talent to build the home he shared with his family for the next 55 years. He later opened his own successful plumbing and construction company and remained active until he retired in 2003.
In anything Franklin believed that you must always honor your commitments, always do you best work and absolutely be kind and helpful to others. He often repeated “good, better, best. Never let it rest until the good is better, and the better is best.” Which became words to live by for those who loved him and resonate to this day. He was a lover of great western movies, a spirited political conversation and just spending time with the people he loved. He was the true meaning of “girl Dad” always interested and invested in the interests of his daughter, granddaughter & great granddaughters.
Franklin was preceded in death by his wife, Kathryn (Williams), siblings Lee Ray Howlett, Elmer Howlett, Edison Howlett, Artie Howlett, Roosevelt Howlett, Essie Fields, Rufus Howlett, Ruth Oliver, and Verta Lawson. He is survived by his loving daughter, Cynthia Howlett (Michael), his granddaughter, Amy Owusu (John), his two great granddaughters Jordan & Amina, his sisters Velda Jean Cato and Annie Smith and a host of nieces, nephews and relatives who will all miss him dearly.
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