By Sam Poe
Thursday, September 19, 2013 | 12:09 AM
|Franks in 1987||Franks and Officer Shane Whitten, 2013|
Ed Franks has served as the Town of Bear Creek's Police Chief since 1981, but he has officially submitted his request for retirement, effective November 1, 2013.
Franks stated he truly enjoys his job, but he and his family agree it is time for him to move on to the next stage of his life. Franks stated he plans to take a few months off to travel, work on the farm, and to spend time with his ten children and fifty eight grand children and great grandchildren. Then, he looks forward to serving the town of Bear Creek as a part-time officer, under the direction of the new Police Chief.
Franks graduated from Phil Campbell High School and Northwest Shoals Community College before entering the Police Academy in Jacksonville, Alabama. He graduated from the academy in 1980 and served as a police officer for Phil Campbell from 1979 until he was named as Bear Creek Police Chief. When Franks was hired in 1981, the Bear Creek Mayor was Royce Frederick. Council members were Jimmy Hulsey, Travis Hulsey, R.C. Lauderdale, Dalton Thrasher, and J.L. Preston. Franks stated he has been involved in and watched many changes in his hometown throughout the years, and he has been honored to serve and protect. He stated it has been a pleasure working with individuals from Bear Creek and the surrounding communities throughout his years of service, and he looks forward to continuing his career in a much more limited capacity in the future.
During his career, Franks stated he never missed a home football game at Phillips High School, and only a few basketball games as well. Franks also reminisced about the cherished times of attending other school events such as dancing with his daughters at their proms and is thankful for the opportunity so few are given.
During the past 32 years, Ed Franks has dedicated so much of his life to protecting the citizens of Bear Creek. Franks has touched countless lives and will never fully understand the impact he made on the small community. Many times, he chose his career and the protection of the town over spending time with his own family, and he stood beside his oath to protect and serve in good times and in bad. Franks has been a role model to his own family and to thousands of other lives he touched during his career. Although Franks has chosen retirement, his legacy will live on through sons, a son-in-law, and a grandson who serve in various law enforcement agencies including the Marion County Sheriff's Department and the Alabama Department of Public Safety.
Franks has provided the Town of Bear Creek with a force of stability through many changes in leadership, hard economic times, tragedies, and triumphs. The Town of Bear Creek will be hard pressed to fill the shoes of Ed Franks, but he stated the new Police Chief will have his full support during the transition and in the future. The Town of Bear Creek will host a retirement reception in honor of Franks at the Bobby Bishop Community Center October 21, 2013, and the public is encouraged to attend. The Bear Creek Town Council is expected to name a new Police Chief next month.