Frank Joseph LeBlond IV, of Youngstown, NY, entered into eternal life on Monday, January 21, 2013, at Our Lady of Peace Nursing Residence, after a lengthy illness. He was 71.
Frank was born May 30, 1941, the son of the late Frank and Marian (Wagner) LeBlond III. He was the proud great-grandson and namesake of Frank LeBlond, who co-founded the Maid of the Mist Steamship Corporation. From an early age, Frank assisted the chief engineer in the engine rooms of the old wooden boats. He also worked with the crew and delighted in riding with the captains in the wheelhouse.
Frank attended Ridley College in St. Catharines, Ontario and graduated from Lew-Port. He made lifelong studies of ship and train steam engineering and draftsmanship. Challenged from birth by cerebral palsy and grand mal epilepsy, in his youth Frank courageously and independently crossed the Atlantic via ship. By train he explored the shipyards of Ireland, Scotland, England, France, Germany and Belgium. In the United States he visited the shipyards and coastland of San Francisco, learning ever more about his beloved sea vessels and their world.
Frank studied American History, especially of the Civil War. He prided himself on being the family historian and would often entertain friends with stories of his ancestors and adventures of the Maid of the Mist.
Frank was talented as a cook and took great pleasure in planning holiday meals. In his workshop, he was skilled in designing and crafting wind toys and detailed ship models. He liked to skeet shoot and to sail, and was a member of the 3FClub and Youngstown Yacht Club. He gardened and played the French horn.
Frank was a devout and well-read practitioner of his Catholic faith. He was a member of St. Bernard's parish and also often assisted as usher at Our Lady of Fatima Shrine. He took special interest in Catholic Charities. His gentle nature spoke in a booming voice.
Frank is survived by his brother, Laurence (Rosemary) of Youngstown; and his cheerful Doxie, "Fletcher", who all miss him dearly.
Friends may call at HARDISON FUNERAL HOME, North Fourth and Ridge Streets, in Lewiston on Sunday from 2 to 4 in the afternoon and 7 to 9 in the evening. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10 AM on Monday, January 28, at St. Bernard's RC Church at Hinman and Second Streets in Youngstown. Reverend Richard Delzingaro, CRSP, will officiate. Burial is at Forest Lawn Cemetery in Buffalo.
Please visit www.hardisonfuneralhomes.com for online registry.