Franklin D. 'Frankie' Goss
A funeral will be held at 2 p.m. Tuesday at Ebenezer United Methodist Church, where he was a member, with the Revs. H.W. "Duke" Walker, Richard Johnson and Karla Farabow. Burial will follow at Forest Hill Memorial Park.
Visitation was held from 6-8 p.m. Monday at Piedmont Funeral Home.
Mr. Goss was born in Davidson County on March 29, 1937, to Nathaniel Goss and Gertha Wilson Goss. He was preceded in death by stepson Todd Hester, two brothers and four sisters.
Frankie was an active member of the Ebenezer/Christ Chapel United Methodist Church charge. He served on the board of trustees and the administrative council and thoroughly enjoyed singing in the choir. While fine-tuning his carpenter skills at Davidson County Community College, he participated in the building of several Habitat for Humanity houses in Lexington, an accomplishment of which he was very proud. He enjoyed art classes and mastered the process of matting and framing items for his family.
After Frankie began his work career in Lexington, he was employed for many years by Dixie Furniture Co. and was supervisor of the machine room at the Dixie-Linwood Plant until the mid-1970s. He then worked for the Burlington Industries Furniture Division, which changed ownership several times, finally becoming Stanley Furniture, from which he retired upon the plant's closing in 2008.
Frankie's love of sports was a constant in his life. Beginning in high school, he played football, basketball and baseball. His senior year at Lexington Senior High School, 1955, he was co-captain of the basketball team and all-conference. That year, he was selected as the first basketball player from Lexington to play in the North Carolina High School All-Star Games. He was an outstanding baseball player, with a .450 batting average and 4-2 record on the mound for Lexington High School, and also played American Legion baseball during his high school career. After graduation from LSHS, he attended Elon College on a baseball scholarship. He was later signed to play baseball with the New York Mets farm system. He played locally with many traveling teams as well as softball leagues.
After his playing days slowed down, Frankie was involved in coaching baseball from the Little League through the American Legion level. He had outstanding teams while coaching Burnett's Junior Tarheel Teams. During his tenure as Lexington's American Legion Team coach, he took the team to a Southern Division League Championship, which the locals had not enjoyed for many years. Later, Frankie coached the American Legion team at Thomasville's Finch Field. He was well-known in the area not only for his playing skills but also for his ability to teach young players the fundamentals of baseball, especially productive hitting techniques.
Before his illness curtailed his ability to travel, Frankie was able to enjoy a trip to Yankee Stadium and see his "heroes in pinstripes" play their last season in the old stadium. He was a life-long Yankee fan and amassed an impressive library and collection of Yankee memorabilia.
From his 20s until his health began to fail, Frankie enjoyed another sport: beagling. He was a longtime member of the Carolina Beagle Club and ran under the kennel name of Fairlane Beagles. Moonshine and Clipper were just two of the many field champions Frankie was proud to claim, as well as many other trophies and ribbons. He especially cherished the many friendships formed with his fellow beaglers.
Surviving are his wife of 35 years, Mary Camille Swing Goss of the home; daughters Dana Goss Hedrick and husband Deane and Ashley Goss Hammond and husband Kevin of Lexington; son Brandon C. "Casey" Goss of Lexington; stepsons Richard Kelly Hester and wife Mary, Michael Wayne Hester and James Patrick Hester and wife Teri, all of Lexington; brothers James Terry Goss of Springfield, Ill., and Pearlie D. Goss of Charlotte; grandchildren Tiffany Bulla and husband Randy, Torey Hammond, Logan Hammond, Grayson Hammond, Rebecca Husted and husband David, Samantha Gray and husband Caleb, Kesley Hester, Olivia Hester, Alex Hester and Tyler Hester, all of Lexington; great-granddaughter Olive Gray; and several nieces and nephews.
Pallbearers are all former Lexington American Legion baseball players who Frankie was proud to coach.
Memorials may be made to Ebenezer United Methodist Church, c/o of Allen Fritts, P.O. Box 410, Lexington, NC 27293, Alzheimer's Association, 1315 Ashleybrook Lane, Winston-Salem, NC 27103, the Lexington American Legion program or to the donor's choice.