Rev. Francis C. “Fran” Griffeth
Rev. Francis C. Griffeth
Rev. Francis C. Fran Griffeth, age 68, of Marion, Iowa and formerly of Tiro, died Saturday, September 6, 2008 at St. Luke’s Hospital in Cedar Rapids, Iowa after a long illness.
He was born February 6, 1940 in Mansfield, the son of the late Cleo and Vernice (Cole) Griffeth. Fran was a 1958 graduate of Tiro High School. On February 18, 1961, he married former Shelby resident, Barbara West in Anchorage, Alaska. Fran served in the Air Force and Army for 22 years (14 years in the Reserve Forces). In 1967 he left the active military to attend St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota, and Luther Seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota. He was ordained into the ministry of The American Lutheran Church in Northfield, Minnesota on July 15, 1975 and served parishes in Illinois and Iowa. In 1995, after a heart attack and two triple bypasses of his heart, he took a medical disability, but continued to serve over a dozen congregations as an interim. Fran was a pastor for over 30 years. He loved his family, grandchildren, and friends in many places. He loved to preach and share stories and humor from the pulpit.
Fran is survived by his former wife, Barbara (West) Griffeth of Marion, Iowa, to whom he had been married for 36 years; a son, Brent and Anita Griffeth of Spooner, Wisconsin; a daughter, Jenny and Shane Hartzler of Marion, Iowa; six grandchildren, Shea, Elli, Emma, and Grace Hartzler, Gena and Spenser Griffeth; 3 brothers, Richard and Betty Griffeth of Columbus, Jim and Barbara Griffeth of Mansfield, Eldon and Ruth Griffeth of Cincinnati; Cousins by the dozen. He was preceded in death by his parents and by a niece and nephew.
Friends may call on Thursday, September 11, 2008 from 5-8 PM at the Turner Funeral Home, 168 West Main Street, Shelby. Private graveside services will be held Saturday morning in Greenlawn Cemetery in Plymouth with military honors provided by the Richland County Joint Veterans Burial Detail. Friends and relatives are invited to attend the funeral at 11 AM Saturday, in the church he grew up in, at Tiro United Methodist Church with Rev. Peter Rohan, officiating. The family will greet guests at a luncheon to follow the service. As a celebration of Fran’s life and new life, Fran requested that no one wear the traditional color black.
Memorial expressions may be made to the charity of the donor’s choice. The family would appreciate on-line condolences at