Frank M. Hamlin Sr.
Dec 29th, 2019
WEST DENNIS – World War II veteran, Frank M. Hamlin Sr., passed away peacefully at home in his sleep, at the age of 99, on Sunday, December 29, 2019, just short of his goal to “reach 100”. He was surrounded by his family during the days and nights leading up to his death.
Frank was born August 10, 1920 and raised in Nashua, NH, by his Great Uncle Emile Malenfant. He was proud to say that he “enlisted in the US Navy before the start of WW II.” He was honorably discharged after the war ended in October of 1946. He earned a Purple Heart for injuries received during the Battle of Savo Island in the South Pacific on the late night of 8/8-8/9/1942. His Cruiser, the USS Quincy was hit by 142 shells “wiping out the bridge and all of the officers”, and two torpedoes. His gun battery position was just above the bridge. The Quincy sank in just eighteen minutes on the day before his 22nd birthday. Their mission was to patrol the island in order to protect the US marines sitting on transport ships in the harbor of Guadalcanal, which battle was begun August 7, 1942. Only the Quincy was able to fire back at the Japanese convoy, and was later recognized by the Japanese after the war of fighting well during the battle. The sacrifice of the Quincy, and that of four other US ships that night, allowed the marines to gain a foothold on the island.
Frank never graduated high school because he “didn’t like the discipline of the brothers”. Yet by the age of 47, he and his wife owed several apartment buildings and their residence in Worcester, MA, as well as a cottage in Dennis Port where they summered for ten years with their children, relatives and friends before purchasing his beloved home in West Dennis.
Frank retired in 1982, after working thirty years on the railroad freight yards of Worcester, MA, as a yard conductor. He spent his time gardening, home brewing over 490 batches of home brew, and sailing his beloved 28’ Cape Dory, “Moonshadow” solo, until the age of 85 when he became the sole care giver of his beloved wife Bernadette A. Hamlin who predeceased him on May 8, 2008. His son, Vietnam veteran Frank M. Hamlin Jr. also predeceased him on April 17, 2016. His brother Joseph died July 8, 2000.
Frank leaves behind his 96 year old sister Denise of New Jersey, son Frank’s wife Sarah and their two children Eli and Ben, great granddaughter Madison, son Richard A. Hamlin and his partner Deborah Powell, Richard’s four children Rebecca, Rachel, Joshua and Michaela, daughter Andrea M. Kirby and her daughter Nicole and her father William Kirby. He also leaves behind three sisters in law and several nieces and nephews and their children.
The family would like to thank the staff at Broad Reach Healthcare, especially Hannah and Michael, and CNA Nick Burrill for their assistance and care during the last days of Frank’s life.
Visiting hours will be Sunday, January 5th from 2-5:00 pm at Hallett Funeral Home 273 Station Ave, South Yarmouth, MA. A funeral Mass will be held at Saint Pius X Church, Station Ave., South Yarmouth, MA on Monday January 6th at 10:00am. Interment will follow at Oak Ridge Cemetery, South Dennis.
Frank’s favorite saying was, “Here We Be”. He will long be remembered as a great husband, father, grandfather, uncle, and for his service during WW II, where he gently walked off the hull of the capsizing USS Quincy, with his shoes around his neck, leaving his life the same way, gently at peace.