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In Memoriam: Frank Arthur Merrill (Nov. 23, 1960 – Oct. 25, 2023)

Frank was born on Nov. 23, 1960 to Ralph and Geraldine Merrill. Frank grew up on a farm in Hubbard, Oregon. He helped on the family farm but loved working on machinery more than other farm work. 

After graduating from North Marion High School in 1979, he worked for a few local businesses including Young and Morgan, Foster Farms, Mallorie’s Dairy and Pepsi operating equipment and driving trucks. This became his passion. He worked many years for Pepsi in Mount Angel, devoting much of his time to his work and recently had become their senior driver. 

Because of his love for trucks and his friendship with Donnie Groat, he became involved with the Pacific Northwest Truck Museum in Brooks, Oregon. He was involved with many of the events held at Powerland and was the chairman of the annual Truck Show. Last summer was the largest show ever, with over 400 trucks in attendance. Frank spent countless hours calling and communicating with people regarding the show; he was always there to help. 

Frank worked hard restoring a 1982 cab over engine Freightliner in honor of he and his dad’s love for the OSU Beavers. He got permission to fly the Beavers mascot, and the truck became a memorial to his dad. Frank loved to cover a truck with lights and attend as many parades as possible.

He is survived by his mother, Geraldine Cooley; sister, Nina King; his Aunt Rose and Uncle Art Zehner; and cousins, Ann Merrill, Jenni Jones, Jill Whitlatch, Lucy Juvenal,
and George Baker.

A celebration of Frank’s life will be Saturday, Nov. 18, 2 p.m. at Brooks Truck Museum. I lieu of flowers, donations in Frank’s name can be made to one of his favorite charities: Shriners Hospital in Portland, Oregon; Randall Children’s Hospital at Legacy Emanuel Hospital, Portland, Oregon; or Liberty House in Salem, Oregon. Arrangements by Unger Funeral Chapel – Silverton.

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Truck procession honors Frank Merrill

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