Frank Phillips Grisham

Born in Birmingham, Alabama on August 28, 1928

Departed on October 9, 2020 and resided in Franklin, Tennessee

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NASHVILLE—Born August 28, 1928, died October 9, 2020 surrounded by his family. Preceded in death by wife of (54) years, Louise Fly Grisham; father James Ernest Grisham, Sr.; mother, Evie Phillips Grisham; brother James Ernest Grisham, Jr.; grandchildren Laura and Lisa Grisham.
Survived by daughter, Beth Grisham, Nashville; sons, Phillip (Jeanie) Grisham, Hurst, TX, David Grisham, Nashville, Brian (Theresa) Grisham, Nashville; grandchildren Holly (Joe) Criswell, Ryan (Kristen) Grisham, Kyle (Chrissy) Grisham, Andrea (Josh) Dow, Reese Grisham, Ross Atwood, Neale Grisham and Scarlett Grisham; great grandchildren Emma, Wyatt and Walker Kurzrock, Everett Grisham, Maddox, Mason, Tensley and Tatum Grisham, and Annalise Dow.
A native of Birmingham, AL, he was an Eagle Scout and graduated from Birmingham-Southern College, Vanderbilt Divinity School, and Peabody College. He was employed by Joint University Libraries, Birmingham-Southern College, Vanderbilt Divinity School, and was Director of both the Jean and Alexander Heard Libraries at Vanderbilt University, and S.O.L.I.N.E.T. in Atlanta, GA. He was appointed to the Metro-Nashville School Board by Mayor Beverly Briley, served on the Board of Directors of Family and Children Services, Civic Committee on Public Education, Delegate-At-Large to the White House Conference on Library and Information Services, President of the Tennessee Library Association, Board of General Commission of Communications in the United Methodist Church.
During his career of 42 years as a teacher, minister, librarian and administrator, Frank received recognition for his service to the church, the community, and education. He was recipient of numerous regional and national Library awards including the Melville Dewey Medal from the American Library Association and the Rothrock Award.
Frank was an ordained minister in the United Methodist Church serving churches in North Alabama and Tennessee including Bethesda New Hope Presbyterian and Glencliff Presbyterian Church and attended Brentwood United Methodist Church and its Wesley Forum Class.
Frank experienced his greatest professional satisfaction in working with students. Beyond his many distinguished achievements, colleagues, students, friends and family will most remember him for his unfailing kindness and warmth. Wherever he went, those he encountered were uplifted by his friendship and contagious spirit. His unique contribution in life was not because of what he did but because of who he was.
Kyle Grisham, Ryan Grisham, Reese Grisham, Joe Criswell and Josh Dow will be active pallbearers. A private burial service will take place at Harpeth Hills Cemetery. A Memorial Service will be conducted for special friends and family at Brentwood United Methodist Church.
In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to the Brentwood United Methodist Church Foundation, or the charity of your choice.

13 Comments to Frank Phillips Grisham

  1. Joe E. Pennel Jr
    October 15, 2020 12:19 pm

    Frank was a servant of the servants of God.
    joe pennel

  2. Jo Francisco
    October 15, 2020 12:40 pm

    Prayers for the family. I met Frank at Brentwood Methodist Church about 2 years ago; what a wonderful man.

  3. Brenda Sluss
    October 15, 2020 1:02 pm

    Frank and family;
    I regret that I couldn’t take part in Wesley Forum’spart of the celebration of yourDad’slife. He was ever the gentleman and I will misshim very much.
    Brenda Sluss

  4. Mrs. Doug Phelps
    October 15, 2020 7:33 pm

    Doug & I will forever be grateful for the fine man he was, including his hiring of Doug to work at the old JUL.

  5. Charles B. Lowry
    October 16, 2020 8:54 am

    Frank was a great mentor and cheerleader to me. Kind and wise beyond compare. I owe him an enormous debt of gratitude.

    Charles B. Lowry, Ph.D.
    Professor Emeritus
    College of Information Studies
    University of Maryland, College Park

  6. Ann Edward's Colvard
    October 16, 2020 9:20 am

    I remember your Mom and Dad when I was young, and most of the children, when we would go to Grannies house. My Grandmother, Rose, and all her family would gather on special occasions with all of the kids etc. Bubba ( and Ernest) meant a lot to Dad growing up. Dad would talk to and about your Dad …. off and on his whole life, as family was so important to the both of them .As you know Dad pasted this April…so they will now be together again. I am sorry for loss, I am sure he will be missed…l will keep you in my thoughts and prayers.
    Ann Edward’s Colvard

  7. Linda Cook Walton
    October 16, 2020 12:23 pm

    I remember Frank as one of the Phillips men. My dad loved him and spoke of him as a fine man. He and dad grew up together in Ensley Alabama. My dad was Oscar Eugene Cook. The son of Minnie Phillips and Duncan Eugene Cook.
    They lived for many years at a house on Ave. E in Ensley. I also remember our big family Christmas gatherings at Granny Phillips house. Sweet memories. We pray for the family and ask for Gods blessings. So sorry for your loss. He is home with his forever family in heaven.

  8. Maureen Sullivan
    October 16, 2020 2:15 pm

    I will always be grateful for the kindness and guidance I was privileged to receive from Frank early in my career. He was among the finest of ARL directors. I had the opportunity to work with him when he was the Executive Director at SOLINET and I enjoyed every minute of the time I spent with him.

  9. Sandra Morris
    October 16, 2020 8:46 pm

    Frank and I were friend from the Maryland Farm YMCA
    We were in Lynn water aerobics class! We both had an interest in genealogy that we talked about all the time! He was a special man and will be missed. Prayers for all his beautiful family!✝️🙏🏻

  10. Sandra Morris
    October 16, 2020 9:01 pm

    I was so sorry to hear of Frank’s passing. Frank and I became friends while attending Water Aerobatics at the Maryland Farm YMCA. We both enjoyed our love for Genealogy and discussed it all the time! Frank and I were friends for over fifteen years. He was such a special man and will be sorely missed! Prayers for all his wonderful family!✝️🙏🏻

  11. Lea Wells
    October 17, 2020 1:12 pm

    Frank was a sweetheart of a man. He married Jordan
    and me on the Vanderbilt campus in the Peabody Chapel in 1981. We were fortunate to be among librarians at that ceremony. He remained our dear friend throughout the years.

  12. Connie Vinita Dowell
    October 19, 2020 3:49 pm

    Frank Grisham was a gentleman who gave the wonderful advice and understanding. He was kind and wise and generous.

  13. Ed Miller
    October 20, 2020 8:50 pm

    Frank Grisham introduced me to the Vanderbilt Divinity School, where I became a student. I did not complete my studies at the Divinity School, because I had an opportunity to become an officer in the U. S. Navy. After serving my active duty time in the Navy, I returned to Vanderbilt to study law. Frank continued to be a mentor for me. When the time came for me to become a married person the only person who was eligible to conduct the marriage was Frank Grisham. To this day he provides guidance for me. He is a very special person. May he rest in peace with God, our Father.

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