Franklin Edmund “Frank” Vranicar

Franklin Edmund “Frank” Vranicar

February 25, 1937 - October 07, 2022

Franklin Edmund “Frank” Vranicar

February 25, 1937 - October 07, 2022


Franklin Edmund Vranicar
February 25, 1937 – October 7, 2022


Franklin Vranicar passed away peacefully on October 7, 2022 at his home in Corona del Mar. As an avid mariner, pilot, and car lover. Frank led an active life well into his eighties. Born in Joliet, Illinois, Frank was one was one of four children and is survived by his twin sister, Francille Zator.

After graduating from Xavier University, Frank attended Officer Candidate School and was trained as an Army aviator. He flew helicopters while he was based at Fort Meade in Maryland, where he met Patricia Ward, who was a stewardess for United Airlines. Frank and Pat were married in 1961 and returned to Joliet, Illinois where their three daughters were born. The family lived briefly in Louisiana where Frank flew for Petroleum Helicopters, Inc. An opportunity to work for Los Angeles Airways, a helicopter passenger airline, brought the family to Southern California in 1966. Later, Frank had a successful career in sales, working for Zellerbach and Pak West Paper & Packaging, during which time he also served in the California Air National Guard.

It was in the ocean off Orange County that Frank found his passion for boating and spending time on the water. The family spent many summers, vacationing at Catalina Island and Frank and Pat were members of Capistrano Bay Yacht Club in Dana Point and Balboa Yacht Club in Newport Beach. When not in the air or on the water, Frank enjoyed driving one of the many vintage cars he collected throughout his lifetime.

Frank had twelve grandchildren and one great grandchild, who recall their grandfather flying overhead in one of his airplanes. He logged 10,455 hours in the air throughout his lifetime, volunteering for the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department, flying across country to Oshkosh in Wisconsin, Sun ‘N Fun in Florida, and participating in formation flying events. He was a member of the EAA Warbirds of America, AOPA, the National Aeronaca Association, and the Quiet Birdmen. He also enjoyed sharing stories of his helicopter appearance in the 2002 Godzilla film.

True to form, Frank passed away on 10-7, radio signal code for Out of Service – Off Duty. He is survived by his wife of 61 years, Pat, and daughters, Sally Cannon and Tracy Nicks. He was predeceased by his daughter, Jill Willke. A private funeral mass and burial at Miramar National Cemetery will be held in December.

Friends and family are invited to join in celebrating Frank’s life on Thursday, December 29 at 2 p.m. at the Balboa Yacht Club.

Gifts in memory of Frank Vranicar may be made to the following:

In support of preservation of America’s Warbirds —
EAA Warbirds of America
Attn:  Kristin Schaick
3000 Poberezny Road
Oshkosh, WI 54902

In support of preservation of Catalina Island —
Catalina Island Conservancy


Celebration Of Life

  • Date & Time: December 29, 2022 (2:00 PM)
  • Venue: Balboa Yacht Club
  • Location: 1801 Bayside Drive Corona del Mar, CA 92625 - (Get Directions)

EAA Warbirds Of America, ATTN: Kristin Schaick

  • Address: 3000 Poberezny Road, Oshkosh, WI 54902
  • Description: In support of preservation of America's Warbirds

Catalina Island Conservancy

No Gallery Photos

No Videos

1 responses to Franklin Edmund “Frank” Vranicar

  1. Mia Montpas says:

    Sally, Tim, Pat, Tracy and the entire Vranicar family. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. We are sorry for your loss but we know the lifetime of wonderful memories will provide comfort. He lives on in all of you and it was my great pleasure knowing Frank through my best college friend Sally. Your best legacy in life is the family you leave behind, and he left an amazing legacy in each of you. May he Rest In Peace I’m the beautiful heavens and clouds that he loved best. Warmly, Mia Montpas & Mark Kelly

Leave A Condolence

Choose a Candle