VIRGINIA BEACH “[November 23, 2009] Van was born in the beautiful mountains of Asheville, N.C. Life was tough back then as he and his family weathered the Great Depression. After high school and a few years prior to World War II he enlisted in the Navy and went on to earn Core membership in that group of folks that Tom Brockaw called “the greatest generation”. As a chief hospital corpsman he served in the Pacific Theater in such places as Guadalcanal and New Caledonia. After the war he became a pharmaceutical representative and climbed the corporate ladder to become a district sales manager with an international company. Later in life he became an Associate Broker at GSH Real Estate. He will be remembered for his abundant energy, “can do” attitude, and usually sunny disposition. Literally and physically he “whistled while he worked.” He was a Mason and a Baptist. He played several instruments and sang in the church choir. His family fondly remembers singing in the car on vacation trips. For 68 years he was a wonderful husband and father to Sharon and Carol. He was a man of faith who was confident there was a place for him in the Lord’s house of Many Mansions. There he would be reunited with all those loved ones who have gone on before him and will await the arrival of those left behind. Van, may you have fair winds and following seas as you sail to the Beyond. We will miss you. He left behind his wife Genevieve Nelon Franklin, two daughters, Sharon Devlin and husband Dr. Timothy Devlin of Virginia Beach, Carol Nicolette and husband James of Napa, California, grandsons Mark T. Devlin and wife Kerstin, great-grandsons Shane and Liam , Brian F. Devlin and wife Becky, and great-grandchildren Ave, Mac, Ethan and Christian, sister, Irene Trent Fero of Loudon, Tn, and brother Charles Franklin and wife Ann of Hendersonville, Tn. He was predeceased by brother Carlyle Franklin of Fletcher, N.C. In lieu of flowers, donations to the Virginia Beach Rescue Squad would be appreciated. Burial will be private. H.D. Oliver Funeral Apts., Laskin Road Chapel is handling arrangements.