Date of Birth
Date of Death
CLARE GROFF FRANTZ JR., age 95, of Sugar Grove, passed away at his home surrounded by the love and prayers of his family on Tuesday, August 17, 2010.BORN: He was born December 4, 1914 the son of Clare Groff Sr. and Eleanor S. (Tague) Frantz in Moorestown, NJ. EARLY YEARS:Groff lived in Chicago for a time. The family moved to Sugar Grove during the winter of 1925-26. Groff graduated from Sugar Grove High School with the class of 1934 and then joined CCC’s, or Civilian Conservation Corps and was stationed in Brule, WI. A year later he attended the University of Cincinnati. MARRIAGE:Groff was united in marriage on June 4, 1939 to Jeanette Huggins and eventually welcomed home four children. They began their new life together in Hessville, IN. Groff and Jeanette’s lives took separate paths in the fall of 1962, but he would be lucky in love once again when he met Ruth Boy Randall at a group called Parents Without Partners. They would soon have no need for the group when they joined their two families in October of 1963. OCCUPATION / WORK HISTORY:Groff served as a machinist apprentice at Youngstown Sheet and Tube in Hammond, IN, eventually becoming a Journeyman Tool Maker/ Machinist just before WW II began. Groff received a deferment during war time and helped to make engines for B-25 Bomber in Chicago. Following the war, Groff and his now growing family came back home to Sugar Grove and converted a local blacksmith shop into his own machine shop complete with an upstairs apartment. In the late 1940’s, Groff began working for many companies including Argonne National Laboratory and Fermilab. Any time not spent at work was dedicated to Groff’s imagination and the results were born in his shop which was where he loved to be. For ninety-five years, Groff’s hands never slowed.MEMBERSHIPS: Groff was a member of the Lincoln Highway Association, the Contemporary Historical Vehicle Association and the Auroraland Auto Restorers Club. As a Mason, he was member of the Jerusalem Temple Lodge, # 90 in Aurora, IL. Groff was also a life time member, past Sunday school teacher and drew up the plans for the Fellowship Addition at the Sugar Grove United Methodist Church. He helped to establish the first Boy Scout Troop 41, in Sugar Grove. In addition, Groff was also Past Assistant Chief of the Volunteer Sugar Grove Fire DepartmentLIFE NOTES: Groff’s achievements and inventions were only limited to the scope of his imagination. His machines were ingenious, his labor intensive and the results were numerous and one of a kind. When the children were young, Groff and Jeanette vacationed at a cabin in Hayward, WI and later when Groff and Ruth’s families became one, trips to the UP in Michigan became a yearly ritual. At first the family spent their time living in tents until a cabin was built and later re-built becoming a haven for family retreats. Groff and Ruth also loved to travel around the country with friends through the CHVA and the Lincoln Highway Association in vintage cars and motorcycles. Groff also built a roadster from the frame up using a Crosley Station Wagon, and his son Cliff now owns and shows it at local car shows. SURVIVORS: He is survived by his wife Ruth of Sugar Grove, Nine children:Clifton G. (Lynne) Frantz of Batavia, Nancy C. Wilkison of Elburn, David S. (Vickie) Frantz of Sugar Grove, Steven J. Frantz of Sandwich, Mark J. (Beth) Randall of Plain City, OH, David L. (Kathy) Randall of Yorkville, Terry M (Jim) Jensen of Aurora, Jane A. (Ken) Laurie of Elburn and Dwight C. (Monica) Randall of Woodstock;Twenty grandchildren, 16 great-grandchildren, Many nieces, nephews, cousins and a family of friends.PRECEDED:He is preceded in death by his parents, one brother Thomas T. Frantz and two grandsons, Curtis Groff Frantz and Jonathon Randall .VISITATION / FUNERAL Visitation will be from 3-4:30 p.m. with a memorial service to follow at 5 p.m., Monday, August 23, 2010 at the Sugar Grove United Methodist Church, 176 Main St., Sugar Grove, IL. Rev. Steven Good, pastor of the church, will officiate. Private family interment will follow at a later date. MEMORIAL In lieu flowers, a memorial has been established in his name to benefit the Sugar Grove Historical Society. Checks may be made to the "Sugar Grove Historical Society" and mailed in care of P.O. Box 102, Sugar Grove, IL 60554. Tributes may also be forwarded to the same address or on the web at www.conleycare.com.
Visitation will be from 3-4:30 p.m. with a memorial service to follow at 5 p.m., Monday, August 23, 2010 at the Sugar Grove United Methodist Church, 176 Main St., Sugar Grove, IL. Rev. Steven Good, pastor of the church, will officiate.
Private family interment will follow at a later date.