FORT WAYNE, Ind. – Frankie Lee Yett born January 18, 1934 to mother Dorothy Yett (deceased) in Baxter, Kentucky (Harlan County).
Dorothy Yett was the only child born to parents Dollie Maw Bledsoe and Ike Yett, who had migrated to eastern Kentucky by way of Alabama and Tennessee, looking for work in the coal mines.
Dorothy gave birth to Frankie Lee Yett in her parent’s home, which was customary at that time, particularly for Blacks. She eventurally went on to meet and marry William Tolbert. They have two children from that marriage Dollie Mae (Austin) and William Tolbert Jr. (both deceased).
Frankie lived a short while in Benham, Kentucky with stepfather and mother, Dorothy and William Tolbert, but later moved to Frankfort to be raised and cared for by his loving grandparents, Dollie and Ike Yett.
Dorothy eventually joined Frankie in Frankfort, Kentucky. The two of them moved to Gary, Indiana for a short stint. Eventually, they settled in Frankfort until Frank decided to join the military while in high school.
Young Frankie joined the military during the Korean War, around 1950/51. He became a paratrooper in the U.S. Army. After serving admirably during the Korean War, Frank left the military and tried the big city life for a while in Chicago, Illinois. Disillusioned with high unemployment and low wages, Frankie decided to return to the military with a stint in the Air Force during the height of the Vietnam War in the early 1960s.
Frank would eventually exit the military again without good job opportunities, finding himself reenlisting in the Army, where he would stay until his retirement in 1976 after 26 active duty service years.
Frankie retired from Fort Campbell, Kentucky and settled in Hopkinsville, Kentucky, where he lived for some 20 years.
His yearning to be close to his family and friends prompted an eventual move to Lexington, Kentucky around 1995. There he stayed until illness prompted a move to Fort Wayne, Indiana to be with family for assistance with medical care management.
Surviving Frankie are his nieces and nephews, Michael (Jeneve) Austin, Lynch, KY, Teresa Mimes, Lynch, KY, Drs. Kenneth (Michelle) Austin, Fort Wayne, IN, cousins, Ike Yett, Claudia Bowen, Ben Yett, Ricky Yett and Kenneth England, and a hose of great- and great-great-nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by a brother, William Tolbert and a sister, Dollie Mae Austin and the love of his life Jessie Moore. He was also preceded in death by a good friend as well as a nephew, Bernard Mimes.
Memorial calling was 12:00-2:00 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 12, 2012 at Covington Memorial Funeral Home 8408 Covington Road, Ft. Wayne, IN. A scripture service will be at 1:30 p.m. Sunday with Chaplain Robin La Rue officiating.
Military honors will be provided by the U.S. Army and American Legion #241. Burial will be later in Kentucky.