Dr. Edward Franklin

           Courtesy, The Commercial Appeal, Memphis - 7/4/2006

           DR. EDWARD OCTAVE FRANKLIN, died Sunday, July 2, 2006, at his home in Southaven, MS. He was born in Memphis, TN, November 10, 1937, to C.O. Franklin and Louise English Franklin. He was a Catholic. He was a graduate of Christian Brothers High School class of 1955, attended the University of Tennessee Knoxville for pre-veterinary courses and graduated from Auburn University Veterinary School of medicine. He served as a captain in the U.S. Army from 1962-1964 and completed a law degree while serving his tour of duty. He practiced Veterinary medicine at Raines Road Animal Clinic in Whitehaven and DeSoto County Animal Clinic in Southaven.
           His varied business interests included founding Passport Inns Motel chain, Bad Bob's Saloon, The Waterhole Lounge, and The Vapors Supper Club. He was a pioneer in the revitalization of Beale Street in the 1980's with the management of the New Daisy Theater, The Good Tymes Dinner Theater, and Proud Mary's. In 1987, he began the 'Images of the King' International Elvis Impersonator Contest, held annually in Memphis during Elvis Week.
           He has been the subject of numerous documentaries and articles for his role in the development of the Elvis Impersonator genre. As an actor, he had a recurring role in the 1990's television series, "Elvis, the Early Years." Always interested in politics, Dr. Franklin was an effective fundraiser and campaigner for numerous national, state, and local races. He was appointed by Governor Ronnie Musgrove to serve on the Mississippi Healthcare Trust Fund Commission. He served on the Memphis Auditorium Commission and the Memphis and Shelby County Port Commission. He was also appointed to the Public Service Council of the State of Tennessee. As an early promoter of tourism in DeSoto County, he founded the DeSoto County Tourism Association and served as Chairman of the Convention and Visitors Board, overseeing the construction of the DeSoto Civic Center.
           At the time of his death, he served on the Board of Directors for the DeSoto County Bank. He was a member of the American Legion - Hugh Dancy Post, the American Veterinary Association, the UT-Martin Skyhawks Club, and the Knights of Columbus. He leaves his wife of 26 years, Jackie Franklin, of Southaven; four sons, Dr. Arthur Franklin, Michael Franklin, and Curt Franklin, all of Memphis, and Brandon Raines of Water Valley, Mississippi; three daughters, Beth Franklin Price of Memphis, Phyllis Franklin Knose of Germantown, and Ann Franklin Pitts of Southaven; and 11 grandchildren; two sisters, Peggy Fullman of Memphis, and Betty Franklin of Germantown; a brother, Calvin Franklin; and an aunt, Mildred Herring of Oklahoma. He was preceded in death by his parents, his first wife, Jane Schneider Franklin; and his sisters: Claire Cogbill, Rose Parry, and Claudia Colbert.
           In lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent to the Community Foundation of Northwest Mississippi in Hernando, MS, or to the American Heart Association. Twin Oaks Funeral Home 662-349-9720

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