Frank Eugene Collett, Sr., a longtime resident of Henryetta, died peacefully in his home surrounded by his loving family on Sunday, February 2, 2020 at the age of 89. Frank was born on June 4, 1930 in Henryetta, OK to Frank and Mildred Gunell (Guthrie) Collett; the second born into a family that would go on to accommodate four sons and a daughter.
Frank grew up in Henryetta and attended Henryetta Public Schools. He worked several jobs during his lifetime. In 1950, he was hired at PPG in Henryetta, but his life brought him more positions to fill. Frank married in 1947 and produced two sons, Frank Eugene Collett, Jr. and Carl Anthony Collett. His sons worked at his side for a great number of years in his businesses, opening opportunities to travel and experiences for their families. As a child, his family would travel to California during summer months to work. When Frank was too young to pick fruit, would take on odd jobs such as shoe shining. One year the family built a house in California, sold it and then came back to Henryetta to build a gas station; starting a cascade of businesses built and sold over the course of Frank's life. The whole family was involved in the construction of many Henryetta businesses. In 1946, they sold the station and built the Mission Motel. In 1948, the Traveltel Motel was erected and a grocery store was next. 1950 was the year the Ranch was built after the grocery business sold. The Western Motel was next in 1952, and Old Corral Motel was built in 1954. They took time off from construction until the Big Barn, Colonial Pancake House and One Stop Store in 1966. The last built by the family was the Collett Motor Lodge in 1972. The family, including his sons, later helped Frank with the construction of the LeBaron Motel in 1982. Frank and family also built many houses in Henryetta. In 1983, he met his companion Judith Fulton who also aided in his business and was his travel partner to numerous locations around the country. Frank took pride in his work and contributions to the town. He was also one of the original board members for the First Family Federal credit Union and the First National Bank of Henryetta. Frank loved to play dominoes with his friends and his distinguishable laugh could be heard during their encounters. He would open doors to everyone and loved to help in times of need. Frank will be greatly missed by all who knew and loved him.
Frank was preceded in death by his parents, Frank and Mildred Gunell (Guthrie) Collett; sister, Shirley May Collett; three brothers: Arliss Collett, Ronald Lee Collett and Glen Gilbert Collett; son, Frank Eugene Collett, Jr.; daughter-in-law, Rebecca Darlene (Scully) Collett; and one grandson, Donald Ray Collett. He is survived by his son, Carl Anthony Collett of Henryetta; daughter in law, Darlene Kay Collett; three grandchildren: Adam Collett of Henryetta, Sherri Lynn Collett of Tulsa, OK, and Brian Eugene Collett of Okmulgee, OK; several great-grandchildren; his companion, Judith Fulton; as well as a host other family and dear friends.
A memorial service for Frank will be held on Saturday, February 8, 2020 at 2:00 p.m. at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in Henryetta.
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