Frank Erwin Body, 74, of Birmingham, Alabama, passed away on Monday, May 16, 2022. A man of great faith and intellect, he was well read and a lifelong learner. He studied books on a wide variety of subjects including economics, religion, mythology, politics, the universe and his favorite subject, Jesus Christ. He admired great thinkers such as Soviet dissident and Nobel Prize winner Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn and English free-market advocate John Maynard Keynes, one of the most influential economists of the 20th century. He took special interest in writings about the Shroud of Turin, a length of linen cloth that he believed to be the actual burial shroud in which Jesus was wrapped after the crucifixion.
Frank was intensely loyal and giving to others, especially his extended family and close friends. He reveled in helping young family members by coaching, encouraging and loving them. He was generous to a fault, often choosing to give gifts of money even when his own funds were waning. He grew up and lived his life in the Roebuck community of Birmingham and graduated from Banks High School in 1965, where he was Senior Class President and Valedictorian. He attended the University of Alabama and then enlisted in the U.S. Army in June 1968. He received training in Pershing missile systems maintenance and was assigned to the 56th Artillery Command in Germany, where his unit oversaw the deployment of nuclear-armed ballistic missiles. He also received the National Defense Service Medal, as well as recognition as a M-14 sharpshooter and as an expert in grenade handling. Upon his honorable discharge as a SPC 5 from the Army, he completed a bachelor’s degree in accounting from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. He then spent many years working as an auditor first for the Internal Revenue Service and then Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Alabama. He was a lifelong, avid fan of the Crimson Tide, and he was a faithful member of South Roebuck Baptist Church.
Frank was predeceased by his parents, Golden and Dorothy Body. He is survived by former wife, Marjorie Clayton; stepsons Steve, Justin and Michael Clayton; sisters Dorothy Orr and Donna (Dean) Burgess; nieces Christy Sharp, Cathy Higgins and Claire Burgess; nephews Andrew Burgess and Mark Burgess, and great-niece Emmy Sharp. The family wishes to acknowledge the kind and loving care provided by Barbara Miller and also the staff of the Col. Robert L. Howard State Veterans Home in Pell City, Alabama.
Visitation will be Saturday, May 21, at 9:30 a.m., with service to follow at 10 a.m. Interment will be at Jefferson Memorial Gardens in Trussville. Dr. Gary Fisher officiating. The family suggests donations to South Roebuck Baptist Church, 501 Mountain Drive, Birmingham, AL 35206, in lieu of flowers.