Frank Fraser Zechlin

Native Minnesotan Frank Zechlin, a career submariner as an active duty and reserve officer, began his Navy life as an aviation machinist mate.  At the Naval Academy, he was a varsity fencer, good enough to compete in the trials for the 1956 Olympics. 


After graduation, he served on the carriers LAKE CHAMPLAIN and ANTIETAM before entering Submarine School.  His submarine duties were aboard CARBONERO, SUBDIV 73 Engineer, navigator of the SSBN LAFAYETTE, and XO of RATON.  He received an MSEE at Monterey, and later added an MS in Systems Engineering from George Washington University and an MSME from the Industrial College of the Armed Forces.  Frank developed a guided missile subspecialty that led to a duty tour at the Strategic Systems Project Office in DC.


After leaving active duty in 1970, Frank commanded Reserve Surface Division 11.  In civilian life he was a program manager for Data-Design Laboratories, becoming an expert in training technology and a member of the corporate staff. In this capacity he was involved in stock exchange application, subsidiary and division operational audits in the US and the UK, and legal case oversight.


Zech spent his later years in the high desert country in Apple Valley California, and died there after a brief illness on 16 May 2001.  His dedication to and love of the Navy was passed on to his three children, Michael, Frank, Jr, and Wendy all of whom served on active sea service duty.