Franklin "Frank" Hanus Blackmer

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Former Steamboat Springs resident Franklin "Frank" Hanus Blackmer passed away Nov. 12, 2004. He was 89.

Frank was born Feb. 16, 1915, in Steamboat to Dr. Frank J. and Eda Wolfersberger Blackmer. He graduated from Steamboat Springs High School in 1932 and continued his education at Yale University, where he received a bachelor's degree in 1936 and a master's of forestry degree in 1937.

Frank married Maxine Morse on June 11, 1938. She was a Minnesota girl who was teaching high school in Hayden at the time of their marriage.

Frank has a long and varied career with the U.S. Forest Service, beginning in the summer of 1931 working with a trail construction crew. He eventually retired from the Regional Office Division of Recreation and Lands in Missoula, Mont., in 1973.

Frank and Maxine lived in many communities in the West, including Denver, Estes Park and Red Feather Lakes; Coeur d'Alene, Idaho; and Whitehall, Helena and Missoula, Mont.

He loved the outdoors and felt very fortunate to have a job where he could encourage and facilitate a wide variety of public recreation on national forest lands. His first love was skiing, which he continued to enjoy into his 70s, including many winter trips to Europe. Frank participated in several bowling leagues and particularly enjoyed golfing with his "Geritol" bunch at the University of Montana golf course. Frank and Maxine traveled all over the world and always enjoyed discovering new places.

He was a member of the First United Methodist Church and sang in its choir for 40 years. He also belonged to Mendelssohn Club and was its president in the '60s. Frank was very proud of his work as co-chairman of the Missoula Open Space Committee, which obtained the Milwaukee Railway right of way. The right of way became a trail though town. He also helped secure the Mount Sentinel easement, which protected the city's environment for future generations.

In the spring of 2003, Frank and Maxine moved to Helena.

Frank was preceded in death by his son, Dr. Franklin H. Blackmer Jr.; his parents; and a sister, Joanne B. Smith.

He is survived by his wife of 66 years, Maxine; two daughters, Diane Cecily and her husband Chuck Kinder of Pittsburgh, Penn., and Andrea Rae and her husband Robert Bateen of Helena, Mont.; seven grandchildren; four great-grandchildren; and several nieces and nephews.

A private family service was held in Helena. Interment is in the Morse plot in the LeRoy, Minn., cemetery.

Memorial donations may be made to First United Methodist Church of Missoula, P.O. Box 7646, Missoula, Mont. 59807, or to a charity of choice.

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