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Uncle Dean

January 20, 2022

September 8, 1929 – January 20, 2022

Alan Dean Frame, Jim’s uncle, passed away tonight. He was 92.

I enjoyed Dean. He was a bit gruff on the outside and, unless he was telling stories — of which he had many — he was a man of few, well-selected words. He had a good sense of wry humor, but he didn’t laugh much. He was smart, astute, accomplished, generous. And, as I said, direct.

We saw him last on his birthday in September. He celebrated Thanksgiving with all (or most) of the AD Frame branch (we were in Davis), and we expected to see him at Christmas, but he wasn’t feeling well and opted to stay home. We knew that wasn’t a good sign.

He was getting worse, and by the time he went to the doctor, a week ago, he had a UTI and sepsis and they sent him right to the hospital in Berkeley. They then discovered he was in need of an aortic valve replacement. No visitors (except one family designate) due to Covid. They were unable to stabilize him, however… and tonight he died.

It seems quick, and, like deaths of close family members, it feels a little sudden and a bit shocking. But it was also not at all unexpected.

From experience, I know it’s a comfort to have a lot of siblings around when a parent dies, and in the case of the AD Frames, they have their five, plus three double cousins from the JH Frame clan as well. But I still imagine everyone’s feeling the loss tonight. When two sisters marry two brothers, have eight kids between them, and choose to live in the same neighborhood for decades …. well…. lots of life happens… all the day to day, all the celebrations, all the milestones, all the holidays, vacations and reunions. And lifelong memories and stories follow. They are quite a family with a whole bunch of strong personalities. Dean, the last of the two-brothers-two-sisters foursome, had become the patriarch.

Here are a few pictures:

This is the original Frame family: In the middle, James Horace Frame, and to his right, his wife (forgive me, I can’t remember her name); and surrounding them, their eleven children. Jim’s dad — James Horace Frame, Junior, is the eldest son (third born) and is in the front row, far right. Nice looking fellow. Dean is well down in the kid line-up, maybe the middle child?, and is that (also) very handsome guy in the top row, far right. This is on the porch of their Kansas home (where all eleven kids were born).

I just have to say, his grandson (also Dean!) looks just like this! Noticing that for the first time.

This one was taken at the 2011 family reunion in Arcadia (the first photo was from this day, as well). Annita passed away almost six years ago, also at the age of 92:

This was a photo taken at Jim’s dad’s memorial in Arizona in January 2017 and is Dean with his brother Michael (the youngest brother in that photo above). Michael and his sister Sandra are now the only siblings remaining (Sandra, who still lives in Kansas, is the blonde next to Jim’s dad) .

And finally, this is a photo from the last time we (Jim and I) saw Dean. He’s walking to his car after his birthday celebration in September. He was struggling physically at this point, but was sharp.

I’m going to miss Dean.

RIP.