Frank Stanly

Frank Stanly (Melody Lynch / August 8, 2014)

Frank Bradford Stanly was a Louisiana boy who grew up to be Texaco's vice president of marketing for North America.

He spent of his entire career with one company — Texaco — but he also had a long military career, first as a lieutenant during World War II in Europe, where he fought in the Battle of the Bulge, and much later when he was deployed to South Korea and supervised all Army personnel matters there, said his granddaughter Melody Benbow Lynch, an Orlando lawyer.

Stanly, 91, of Orlando died July 27, following months of medical complications after he fell and broke a hip, Lynch said.

He was born in Haynesville, La., in 1923, and was no stranger to Central Florida. Texaco twice transferred him here, once in the 1960s, when he and his wife, Katherine, moved to Maitland, and again in the 1970s, when they lived in Winter Park. After he retired, they moved here a third time, to Longwood in 1990, Lynch said.

Friends and family described him as a Southern gentleman, an outdoorsman and a good boss.

"Living in Florida, one of the popular sports was speckled perch fishing," said Roland Dann of Springfield, Ga., whom Stanly hired as a Texaco truck driver in 1964 and then promoted to sales. "Mr. Stanly, one of the things I'll always remember, he said, 'Work hard, but when the specks are biting, go speck fishing.'"

Stanly was a golfer, but after hitting three consecutive shots into the water from the same tee where his son-in-law had just hit a hole-in-one — at a prestigious St. Louis country club — the pair turned their attention to hunting, said son-in-law Dennis Benbow of Orlando.

They hunted together in Alaska, Texas, British Columbia, Tanzania and Ethiopia, Benbow said. Stanly brought down a lion on one African safari, Benbow said; he also successfully hunted leopard, buffalo and bear.

Stanly graduated from a private high school, Columbia Military Academy in Columbia, Tenn., in 1941 and enrolled at Louisiana State University.

He arrived on campus with only a footlocker and a tuition check for $125, and he hid the locker in the bushes until he could track down the one person on campus that he knew, a cousin who played in the band, Lynch said.

He was in the ROTC and was shipped to Europe before graduating, serving in an anti-tank company during World War II, Lynch said. He was wounded by artillery while fighting to secure a bridge on the Rhine River.

He retired in 1983 as a colonel in the U.S. Army Reserve, Lynch said, after being awarded a Purple Heart and two Bronze Stars.

Stanly is survived by his daughter, Kay Stanly Benbow of Orlando; grandchildren Melody Benbow Lynch of Orlando, Noelle Benbow Skelly of Lakeland, and Jordan Hunter Benbow of Sorrento; and two great-grandchildren.

Stanly received full military honors during a memorial service July 31 in Bunkie, La., where he and his family had lived for a time. Melancon Funeral Home in Bunkie handled arrangements.

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