Obituary for Frank Norris Flynt
Frank Norris Flynt was born on May 2, 1927 to Bud Flynt and Ella Rae Stone in Fayetteville, Tennessee. He was the fifth of eight children. His brother Barney and Sisters Jane Willis, Rachel Forney, Ruth Porter, Margaret Lane and Helen (Teency) Greene preceded him in death. He grew up in Fayetteville with his brothers and sisters an attended Fayetteville Schools. He graduated with honors from Lincoln County High School in 1944 where he was president of his senior class. He attended Knoxville College where he played football all four years.
On April 21, 1947, he was initiated into Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. Beta Epsilon Chapter at Knoxville College. He often spoke about the unity and devotion of black fraternities, especially when colleges traveled into the deep south for sporting events. Due to Jim Crow laws, black students could not stay at hotels or other public lodging, and the brothers of Omega Psi Phi and other fraternities would meet the buses and host their fraternity brothers at their fraternity houses, providing a safe haven for them. Frank always enjoyed meeting and talking with younger members of the fraternity, especially when he would visit his children at college.
On Friday, April 21, 2017, Omega Psi Phi fraternity, Zeta Omega Chapter honored Brother Flynt on his 70th platinum anniversary in the organization.
In 1949, he relocated to Cleveland, Ohio where his sister Rachel lived. While enjoying Cleveland, he met Alice Marie Phillips. They married on May 6, 1950, and had three children, Karen Tina, Donna Lynette, and Eric Leighton.
Frank worked as an Inspector/Foreman for Republic Steel – Steel and Tubes Division, which later became LTV Steel. During his time, he served terms as a union representative and also as a drug and alcohol counselor for employees who were undergoing treatment for addiction. He retired in 1990 after 39 years with the company.
He was a member of St. John's Masonic Temple, where he was a 33rd degree mason.
Frank enjoyed his family and they all loved his Sunday drives to various places throughout Ohio. He particularly enjoyed the various Amish communities; Serpent Mound Historical Site; Schoenbrunn Village; Native American pow-wows; Zoar Village; and any place with water – lake, pond, creek, whatever! There was always an annual Geauga Lake Park visit with families of co-workers, where he would spend the day riding amusement rides with the kids and playing horseshoes with his co-workers.
Around 1970, he bought a camper and the family enjoyed many years of camping at various campsites and parks. Frank was especially fond of building bonfires. His version included fires so large that we couldn't sit near them! After building the fire, he would stand back with his hands on his hips and say "now that's a good fire." Keep in mind that it was so hot that any hot dog or marshmallow on a stick would be immediately incinerated! He loved it!
Both Frank and Alice were very involved in the civil rights movement in the late 1950s and 1960's, working diligently to elect Carl Stokes as the first Black Mayor of Cleveland. They were organizers of "Voice of the People", a grassroots community organization that worked to elect members of the Black community into local government positions; integrate neighborhoods and advocate for equality. They brought their children to civil rights marches and protests. They coordinated integration meetings between White and Black families who met for several weekly sessions to get to know each other. They, along with two other families integrated the Collinwood neighborhood in 1962. Although not welcomed and threatened, they maintained their desire to give their children a better life and stayed. He helped organize a street club for residents and spearheaded a fund raising drive to purchase a snow blower for the street. Frank along with his good friend and neighbor, Rob Taylor, took turns plowing the sidewalks and driveways on the street so that people could walk safely during the cold winters and cars would not get stuck getting into their driveways.
An avid sports enthusiast, Frank enjoyed running and he belonged to a local running club. He would run 3-4 miles a day about 4 days a week, and on Friday's he participated in the club run of 6-8 miles, to the lake and back. Later, after knee surgery prevented him from running, he enjoyed swimming at the local YMCA. Until recently, he went to the gym three times per week where he would ride the stationary bike and swim 10 laps in the pool and use light weights. He also enjoyed a good game of golf.
As a sports lover, he was a fan of the Cleveland Browns and the Cleveland Cavaliers. Along with his daughter Donna, they attended as many home games as they could.
Last year, the family celebrated his 90th birthday with a day-long party for friends and family. He was so happy and he truly enjoyed being with everyone!
Frank suffered a stroke on Sunday, September 2nd. On Saturday, September 29, 2018, he passed away peacefully surrounded by his children and grandchildren.
He leaves to cherish his memory, his three children – daughters Karen Tina and Donna Lynette, son Eric Leighton and daughter-in-love Juliet; five beloved grandchildren – David Norris, Erika Jasmine, Brandon Charles, Adonna Zazi, and Bosch Logan; and two wonderful great granddaughters – Leilani and Lori Ann; a special son Ted Ginn, Sr., and daughter-in-love Jeanette, and their children Tiffany and Ted, Jr.; his sole surviving brother, Nathaniel Flynt and his wife Christina; 24 nieces and nephews who affectionately called him "Uncle Poppy" and numerous great nieces and nephews. He also leaves to cherish his memory a host of friends, including long-time friends Willie and Elizabeth Harvey, Jackie Wilkerson, Ted McCoy, Morris Morgan and many others.
We miss you already Dad, you will live on in our hearts forever - 91 years loved!
Lovingly Submitted, The Family
Additional Funeral information :
Frank was a 71 year member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity and 33rd Degree Mason.
Entombment Knollwood Cemetery
FUNERAL SERVICES 10 AM SATURDAY AT THE FIORITTO FUNERAL HOME
5236 MAYFIELD ROAD, (EAST OF RICHMOND ROAD) WHERE FRIENDS MAY CALL FRIDAY 4-8 PM.