Kenneth Frantz was born May 1947, in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. After two years at the University of Oklahoma, he enlisted in the United States Marine Corps in September 1967. Upon graduation from Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego, he was assigned as a Troop Leader, 2d Infantry Training Regiment at Camp Pendleton. Receiving his commission as a Second Lieutenant via the Enlisted Commissioning Program in 1969, he attended The Basic School and Marine Corps Engineer School, whereupon his first assignment was as a Platoon Commander, 8th Engineer Battalion, 2d Force Troops, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina.
Volunteering for overseas duty, he was transferred to Third Combat Engineer Battalion, Okinawa, Japan in January 1971. There he served as Assistant Operations Officer; Commanding Officer of Headquarters and Service Company; Battalion Atomic Demolition’s Munitions Officer and Officer in Charge of the Leadership School.
Returning to Camp Lejeune, he served at the Marine Corps Engineer School, first as the Senior Instructor, Special Subjects, and later as the Executive Officer, Student Command. He was then transferred to Fort Belvoir, Virginia in May 1974 to attend the U. S. Army Engineer Officers’ Advanced Course.
Returning to Marine Corps Recruit Depot, San Diego, Captain Frantz served as the Maintenance Operations Officer. During this assignment, he was temporarily assigned to Camp Pendleton as the Engineer Officer for OPERATION NEW ARRIVAL where he promptly set about accomplishing the priority task of establishing camps in six days to house 18,000 Vietnamese and Cambodian refugees who were fleeing their countries after the Vietnam conflict. Before terminating operations, the Camp Pendleton Reception and Processing Center would process over 50,000 refugees in less than seven months.
Returning to San Diego, Captain Frantz initially assumed duties as Commanding Officer of Service Company, Headquarters and Service Battalion and from October 1975 until June 1978, he served as the Facility Management Officer for the Depot.
Returning Overseas, this time to Iwakuni, Japan and First Marine Aircraft Wing, he served as the Wing Utilities Officer prior to assuming duties as Executive Officer, Detachment “C”, Marine Wing Support Group-17.
Following his transfer to the First Combat Engineer Battalion, First Marine Division at Camp Pendleton, he served as the Operations Officer, Logistics Officer, Commanding Officer, Support Company and Battalion Executive Officer. Additionally, during this time he served as Headquarters Commandant for the 5th Marine Amphibious Brigade during exercise GALLANT EAGLE.
Upon graduation from the Marine Corps Command & Staff College at Quantico, Major Frantz participated in the College Degree Completion Program and graduated from Central State College, Oklahoma with a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and Management.
In January 1985, Lieutenant Colonel Frantz was assigned as the Engineer Officer, Fleet Marine Force, Atlantic where he additionally served as Engineer Staff Officer for the Second Marine Amphibious Force (Il MAF) and the Fourth Marine Amphibious Brigade (4th MAB).
Upon his transfer to Okinawa, Lieutenant Colonel Frantz initially served as the Third Marine Expeditionary Force (Ill MEF) Engineer Officer and then as the Commanding Officer, 3rd Combat Engineer Battalion. While serving as Battalion Commander, he was selected to the grade of Colonel and served his last year on Okinawa as the Assistant Chief of Staff, G-4, Third Marine Expeditionary Force.
Transferring to Hawaii, he was the Commanding Officer of Brigade Service Support Group 1, 1st Marine Expeditionary Brigade, Kaneohe, Hawaii, from June 1991 to December 1992.
Upon joining Marine Forces, Pacific, he initially served as the MARFORPAC Liaison Officer to U.S. Central Command during OPERATION RESTORE HOPE and assumed duties as the Force Engineer Officer for Marine Forces, Pacific, on April 1993, and served in that billet until December 1993.
After the Commandant of the Marine Corps approved the permanent establishment of the U.S. MARCENT Liaison Officer billet to be located at Central Command, MacDill Air Force Base, Tampa, Florida, Colonel Frantz performed those duties from December 1993 until April 1997.
He then returned to Okinawa and served once again as Assistant Chief of Staff G-4, Third Marine Expeditionary Force until his retirement June 1999.
His personal decorations include the Legion of Merit with Gold Star, Meritorious Service Medal, Navy Commendation Medal, Navy Achievement Medal with Gold star, Joint Meritorious Unit Award with two Oak Leaf Clusters; Humanitarian Service Medal with gold star, National Defense Service Medal with star, and Sea Service Deployment Ribbon with 5 stars.
Upon retirement, he and his Wife Diana of DuBois, Pennsylvania, moved to their Florida cattle ranch until relocating to Ashville New York in April Of 2005. In 2011, they moved to Conroe, Texas to help family members and escape the cold New York winters.
In October 2005, Ken was elected as President/Secretary of the Marine Corps Engineer Association and assumed additional duties as Executive Director in 2007. From 2005 until January 2016, he served 10 years as Secretary, webmaster, contracting officer and newsletter editor, 8 years as Executive Director, 6 years as President and filled in as Treasurer, Chaplain, Historian and Associate Director.
Ken stepped down from his duties in 2016 to become full-time caregiver for Diana until she passed away March 2019.
In August 2019, Ken returned to his volunteer duties with the Marine Corps Engineer Association as a Permanent Associate Director and moved to Gleannloch Farms in Spring, Texas.
November 2019, Ken was elected to the Board of Directors and as Executive Director for Future Operations Base; a Houston area non-profit assisting active duty and veterans, plus first responders and eligible family members.
February 2020, Ken became a foster dad to Honor, a yellow Labrador puppy in support of The Rescue for PTSD. The goal is to train Honor and pair her with a wounded warrior from the Lone Survivor Foundation.