Our beloved father, grandfather, and great-grandfather, Franklyn Duke Knowles chose a beautiful day to return to Heaven on Nov. 1, 2020, in St. George, Utah. He was born on Dec. 13, 1940, in Salt Lake City, Utah to Eugene Arthur Knowles Sr., and Pearl Delores Duke.
He attended Onequa and Jackson elementary schools; Jackson Jr. High; West High, and the University of Utah. In 1960 he joined the Utah National Guard as a member of the newly organized Special Forces. He had the wonderful opportunity to serve a mission (1961-1963) in the South Africa Mission. In those days, the mission included the countries of South Africa, Northern Rhodesia, and Southern Rhodesia. He truly grew to love the people of these beautiful countries and returned many times.
In 1964, he married Sue Richins (later divorced) and had two wonderful children Jilynne (Travis) Hafen, and Shawn (Susanna) Knowles, both living in St. George, Utah. He felt blessed with six fantastic grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren, with one more coming in December.
Dad began his sales and management career in the health spa business. The remaining 35 years were spent within the development and growth in the franchise industry working with Spudnuts, Taco Bell, Sea Galley, Snelling Personnel and Martinizing.
Dad has six sisters: Donna Edmund, Maxine Littleford (deceased), Waneta Ensign, Carole Mitchell, LaRene (Terry) Lester, and Margie White, all living in the greater Salt Lake City area. He also has one brother: Eugene “Bud” A. Knowles, Jr. (DeAnn) in Bountiful, Utah. At age 69, while writing his history, Dad learned he had a brother, Deyon. Dad was heartbroken in never having had the opportunity to meet Deyon as he was “missing in action or buried at sea” and presumed dead in November 1943, after serving on the USS Preston. We are sure Dad and Deyon have now met and are sharing stories of their youth and celebrating their brotherhood.
Dad has always been active in the LDS Church. Upon returning from his first mission to South Africa in 1963 he served as assistant chaplain at the Utah State prison for five and a half years. He also served as High Priest Group Leader, Ward Clerk, Bishops Counselor, and three times as a member of stake High Councils. He also served as ordinance worker in the Portland, Oregon Temple. In 2013 he was called to serve in the Johannesburg, South Africa mission for a second time, where he had the opportunity to serve as a branch president. It was a tremendous opportunity where he met many more wonderful and cherished friends.
Dad would want us to recognize and thank his doctor Heather Gilbert, MD, and all the chemo nurses and staff at the Intermountain Cancer Center, St. George, for their fantastic and professional service. Words cannot express his love and appreciation for their assistance and patience. Their friendship was greatly appreciated. We would also like to express our gratitude to Intermountain Hospice for their care and compassion.
Our family has truly been blessed. Dad repeatedly shared, “When I am gone, more than anything else, I will miss all my children and grandchildren.” Dad, we know you are watching over us now and we will see you soon. XOXO
Funeral services will be held Saturday, Nov. 7, 2020, at 11 a.m. at the Bloomington 7th Ward LDS Chapel, 3519 Manzanita Road, St. George, Utah. Visitations will be held Friday evening from 6-7 p.m. and again Saturday morning, prior to the service from 9:30-10:30 a.m., both at the chapel. Interment with military honors will follow the service at the Tonaquint Cemetery. Masks and social distancing are required inside the church. The services will be live-streamed at www.Manzanita.SouthGateStake.com. In lieu of flowers please donate to the Church Missionary Department.
Family and friends are invited to share condolences online at www.SerenityStG.com Arrangements are under the direction of Serenity Funeral Home of Southern Utah, 435-986-9100.