Retired U.S. Navy Capt. Francis Joseph Schatzle, 83, died Tuesday, June 9, in Annapolis, Maryland. Born in Cold Spring (Nelsonville), New York, to the late Frank and Mary Schatzle, Frank cherished his hometown. Frank was the eldest of five boys, and he and his brothers, all exceptional athletes, loved to tell stories of growing up in Nelsonville and Cold Spring, attending Haldane High School, ice skating on frozen ponds, running around Main Street and working all over the village.
Frank held the New York State high school mile record for many years, raced in Madison Square Garden against Roger Bannister, and continued to run races and marathons for decades. He graduated from Haldane High School in 1949, from Albany State in 1953 with a bachelor’s degree in physics and finally a master’s degree from the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California.
In January 1954, Frank was commissioned as an ensign in the U.S. Navy. While serving in Jacksonville, Florida, he met his wife of 49 years, Ann Turner (1932-2010), whom he loved dearly. Ann, from Peterborough, England, met Frank when she was working as a stewardess for National Airlines. Frank enjoyed a long and distinguished 29-year naval career, retiring in 1983. He was extremely proud of his naval career and upon retirement was considered one of the top hurricane experts in the country.
Frank was a lifelong golfer who loved to tee off early in the “Dawn Patrol,” to be home in time to work in the yard. After retiring, he remained in Pass Christian, Mississippi, enjoying golf, happy hours with Ed and Helen Smith, attending Navy Hurricane Hunter Reunions with lifelong Navy friends, and enjoying Mardi Gras for 33 years, collecting thousands of beads, mementoes and memories.
In addition to his wife and parents, Frank was preceded in death by his brothers, Arnold, Eddie and Danny Schatzle. He is survived by three children, Matthew Schatzle of Annapolis, Sharon (Jeff) Bonck and Andrew (Amy) Schatzle all of Pass Christian, and his brother, Philip Schatzle, of Cold Spring. He is also survived by a source of great pride to Frank, his 10 grandchildren, Claire, Jacob and Noah Schatzle of Annapolis, Stephen, Jack and David Bonck, Alison, Nicholas, Brady and Cooper Schatzle all of Pass Christian.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, June 23, at Our Lady of Loretto Church, 24 Fair St., Cold Spring, followed by interment at Cold Spring Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Haldane High School Foundation.