O’dell Anderson Frandsen, 93, died on April 24, 2019, in his home in Alpine, Utah. He was born on September 8, 1925, in Centerfield, Utah, to Burgess Lyman Frandsen and Ida Elizabeth Anderson. He married Ona Velyn Mortensen on February 14, 1947, in the Salt Lake City Temple.
Part of a large family, O’dell was the sixth of seven children. Many of his growing up years were spent on a farm where he worked with livestock and farm machinery, and grew crops. His father, BL, was a hard worker and expected the same from his family. O’dell liked taking care of the cattle, sheep, pigs, turkeys, and chickens.
O’dell liked going to school because it was so much easier than staying home and working on the farm. He attended his first few years of school in Clarion in a two-room schoolhouse; later his family moved to Price where he attended Harding School, Price Jr. High School, and Carbon High School. His interests were auto mechanics and biology classes. O’dell spent summers and after school working at a service station his father had purchased. His dad didn’t pay much, but compensated by letting O’dell use his nice cars.
Two months after he turned 18, he was drafted into the Army to serve in World War II. He served on the European Front. He was awarded bronze battle stars for the Normandy, Northern France, Rhineland, and Ardennes campaigns and the Purple Heart medal for injuries sustained during the Battle of the Bulge.
Soon after returning home, O’dell proposed to his sweetheart, Ona Mortensen, to whom he had written during his service years. He met her during high school at an outdoor roller rink in Cleveland, Utah, her hometown. He often told his children that Ona was the prettiest girl in two counties. He and Ona were married on Valentine’s Day in 1947. Together, they moved to Logan, Utah, so that O’dell could attend Utah State University with the help of the GI Bill of Rights, which helped pay the college expenses. Because of his love for the outdoors and animals, he attended the School of Forestry, majoring in Range Management. His long career as “Dad” began when his first child, Velyn, was born while he and Ona were attending college.
Immediately after graduation, O’dell taught at Carbon College in Price for three years. O’dell enjoyed horseback riding and spent most of his free time with horses. He rode with the Sherriff’s Posse, a skilled riding group in Price, Utah. He was known as a talented “bronc buster.” O’dell then went to work for the Federal Bureau of Land Management (BLM), where he spent the remainder of his working career. He often told his family that he never regretted his choice of careers and he enjoyed going to work every day. During his early years with the BLM, he spent many hours “in the saddle” checking up on public lands, where he could enjoy the wide-open spaces of the outdoors and the abundant wildlife. During these years he did a lot of fishing and hunting, which he loved. O’dell started his career with the BLM in Price, Utah, where his sons Greg and Daryl were born. He moved the family from Price to Vernal, Utah, where his children Jerilyn and Rick were born. From there they went to Gooding, Idaho, then to Idaho Falls, Idaho. He was the District Manager for 25 years in Vernal, Gooding, and Idaho Falls. His final position in the BLM was the Deputy State Director for the State of Utah.
O’dell received many awards and recognition for his outstanding management skills and untiring service. Of his choice of career, O’dell said, “Why did I do what I did? Mother Nature, along with the different animals, birds, and fish have always been my first interest. Only my family, my wife, and all my favorite children bring more happiness and well-being. The land which we hold in trust for future generations and which is ours to improve while we live is all that we have in the world; there will never be more.”
He loved times spent with his family. He was especially proud that all his sons and grandsons earned Eagle Scout awards and served as LDS missionaries. Everyone loved to go visit and stay with Grandma and Grandpa Frandsen. The cousins loved playing in his always large and well-taken-care-of yard. Everyone wanted to be at their house for all holidays, especially Christmas. The family enjoyed outings camping and waterskiing at Palisades Lake, Snake River and Moon Lake Reservoir.
Odell’s retirement years were spent with Ona in Alpine, Utah, where he worked in his large yard, tended his fruit trees, and grew a high-yield vegetable garden, the products of which he shared with all his family. O’dell also loved spending time at his Fairview Lakes cabin alone or with family. He loved riding his 4-wheeler around to enjoy his “favorite sights of nature.” His whole family enjoyed outings at the cabin, especially when Grandma and Grandpa were there.
We will remember him for his love and service to his wife, Ona; his love and enjoyment of family; his love for Mother Nature; his hard work; his honesty; his need to “be on time;” his steadfastness; and his unfailing support of us all.
Survivors include his wife Ona, children: Velyn (Gary) Tassainer, Daryl (Rosanna) Frandsen, Jerilyn (Monte) Preece, Rick (Janet) Frandsen, a daughter-in-law, Donna Frandsen, siblings: LaRue Frandsen and Beth Hartman, 25 grandchildren, 63 great-grandchildren, and 2 great- great-grandchildren. Preceded in death by his parents, his son Greg, great-grandson Leo, and siblings: Duane Frandsen, Nellie Frandsen, Garth Frandsen, and Pete Frandsen.
Funeral services will be held on Saturday, May 4th, at 11 am at the Alpine 7th Ward, 890 Heritage Hills Drive, Alpine. A viewing will be held on Friday, May 3rd, from 6-8 pm at Anderson &Sons Lone Peak Chapel, 6141 West 11000 North, Highland, and on Saturday from 9:45-10:45 am at the Alpine 7th Ward building. Burial at Alpine City Cemetery. Please share a memory at andersonmortuary.com.