Frank V. Gardner
Biography of Frank V. Gardner
Frank, born in Washington, lived his early years in the small community of Glencarlyn, across the Potomac River from the Nation's Capital, in Arlington County, Virginia. After his father, Francis I. V. Gardner, died in a construction accident. his mother, Marie Gardner, moved with Frank, age four, and his two sisters, back to Washington, where she went to work as a clerk-typist for the U. S. Government. Frank attended elementary and high school in Washington.
After completing two years of college in 1942, Frank enlisted in the U. S. Marine Corps to fight in World War Two. After boot camp at Parris Island, South Carolina, he was trained as a radio operator in the Naval Training Station on the campus of Texas A. and M. College, College Station, Texas.
He fought in three major Pacific island battles, landing in amphibious assault on Iwo Jima, Okinawa, and Saipan. As World War Two ended, Staff Sergeant Gardner was honorably discharged from the Marines in late 1945.
Frank returned to Mount St. Mary's College, Emmitsburg, Maryland, receiving a Bachelor's Degree in Social Science two years later. In May 1948, he entered the Federal Bureau of Investigation as a special agent, serving that Bureau for thirteen years in five states and the District of Columbia. Along the way, he married Geraldine Donahue of Cleveland, Ohio, in 1951; they had nine children.
In 1962, Frank moved to the U S. Department of State, where he served three years as a security officer. He then entered the Foreign Service and served six years as a U. S. Consul in Mexico at three American consulates.
For the next ten years, he served as an administrative officer for the State Department's Office of International Conferences, with temporary assignments in a variety of overseas stations, one each, in: Tegucigalpa, Honduras; Quito, Ecuador; Belgrade, Yugoslavia; and Castries, Saint Lucia. In addition, Frank had several such assignments in both New York City and Geneva, Switzerland.
His last posting overseas was for two years as an administrative officer at the American Embassy in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He retired from the Foreign Service in 1986. They had 9 children,17 grandchildren, and 7 great-grandchildren.
Frank V. Gardner's Works:
Rest Assured, John Kennedy, 1973 - a poem booklet of 32 pages, professionally printed, with pencil sketches to match 13 verses describing the four-day mourning for our slain Presdent.
Impressions in Iambic Verse, 1985 - 56 pages, 32 typewritten
poems, with some newspsper clippings and other supporting documentation, hastily assembeled for family Christmas gifts that year by Frank, Nancy, and other siblings.)
Musings in Iambic Meter, 1993 - 40 pages: Mostly, the same 32 poems, computer produced without the prevuous extraneous documents
The Walshes of Burgundy, 1993 - 68 pages: Computer Produced and family assembled: The story, as mother told it, of my great grandparents, Thomas and Mary Walsh, traveling from Ireland in the 1840s to New York; finally in 1869 to Burgundy Plantation in Fairfax County, Virginia. This included some independent research.
The Bruen and Gardner Families, 1994 - 75 pages: Computer produced and family assembled: The story, as mother told it, of the Walshes and Bruens from Ireland, her marriage to my father after The Great War, my life story and marriage to Geraldine Donahue.
With Six Marine Divisions: Across the Central Pacific, 1995 - 134 pages of black-on-white print: My World War Two experiences, with research. Family proofread and assembled.
Marine Air Support One.... of World War II, 1999 - The same war experiences and research as in the 1995 book, with 68 illustrations added, including photos, maps, and charts, some in color. The pages increased from 134 to 198. Family proofread and assembled
(These seven works were self published.)
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Frank V. Gardner Poems
This Time, You Come to Me
All through our lovely married life I've had to go away. And it was always you, my dear, Who was back home to stay.
Sanctification of Love
Those lovers, young, may think they know, But they won't know the score, Until they're married twenty years, And then they add some more.
Come Home. Danny
The day that Danny went away He didn't make a fuss. It was the second day of May.... He left a note for us.
Iambic Tetrameter and Me
Today, I sat me down to ponder Why I write like this: Four metric feet, first line of text, And three feet in the next.
Body Man, a Special Breed
The body man is in a job That he's been in for years. He gets it done, as they all do, With muscle, sweat.... and beers.
Six years we've lived in Mexico, And now it's time to go. We're headed back to Washington, Where winter brings the snow.
Widow and Very Special Mother
In nineteen hundred twenty four, Because our father died, Our mother had to go to work, And swallow family pride.
Not any other Landing Force
They called us Landing Force, Air Support Control Unit One: Marines who knew the difference 'tween A rifle and a gun.
Do the Best You Can
The world around us doesn't wait for us to make a mark; For waiting is so futile when we have so little spark. So many do the waiting as they watch the world go by; Too many sit and wonder how the mountains meet the sky.
Iwo Jima: Why and How
Discussing the Pacific War, a student asked of me, "Why take so small an island, isolated, far at sea? " I told the class what we had done; it jogged my memory. At home, I wrote that epic down in verse and poetry.
Gardner Seven Teens
In spring when buds are popping, And the leaves are showing green, Who could enjoy it better than A girl of seventeen.
John Kennedy, Eternal Rest
The day John Kennedy was shot, He bowed his wounded head... His wife embraced him frantically, Her lap, a martyr's bed.
Rest Assured, John Kennedy
The years have passed since Kennedy... With heartache, war, and strife.... How would it be if, only, He had not then lost his life?
Mother's Day with Microwave
This early morn I woke befuddled; . Came downstairs to write These thoughts that in my mind were muddled Through the stormy night.
Iwo Jima: Why and How
Discussing the Pacific War, a student asked of me,
"Why take so small an island, isolated, far at sea? "
I told the class what we had done; it jogged my memory.
At home, I wrote that epic down in verse and poetry.
We had to capture Iwo Jima, killing most its men.
No other way could it be done, from landing to the end.
It's how I answer inquiries, some sixty years 'tis now;
And every time I speak of it, I'm wondered by the "how."