William Paul  Franklin's Memorial

William Paul Franklin
(1946 - 2012)


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General Details

Name: William Paul Franklin
Nick Name: Captain Zero
Gender: Male
Age: 66 years old
Lived: Sunday, 21 July 1946 - Saturday, 22 September 2012

My Story

Paul was born on the 21st July 1946 at a nursing home in Crickhowel in South Wales. His parents were Arthur and Rene, an unusual mix of Jewish and Protestant, that certainly worked for them. Paul’s father  was a local doctor (GP) in Ebbw Vale in South Wales. When Paul was only a few months old, the doctors’ practice and family moved to Liverpool in England.  

 According to his sister Joni, Paul was a beautiful child, flaxen haired and blue eyed.& always into some sort of mischief. Also being quite a bit younger than his siblings, his Mum apparently let him get away with murder. He had a lot of friends, but his best friend was Peter Edwards who lived over the road and they remained close throughout their lives. They spent many hours in a large room at the top of the house engrossed with a huge model railway set and making Airfix model planes. Read Pete Edwards story for further details on their escapades, including one of Paul’s first accidents, this time on 4 wheels.

 When Paul was 10 years old he was sent to boarding school first to Sea scale in Cumberland and then to Epson Boys School in Surrey which he hated. He returned to Liverpool during holidays and the room eventually became the music room, where the two would bash away on guitar’s. Paul spent one year as an undergraduate at St Andrews University in Scotland, but decided that this wasn’t for him. His parents also had a house on Angelsea in N. Wales, later moving to Caernarvon and Nefyn in N. Wales when the doctor retired. Wales had a special place in Paul’s heart and his racing leathers sported the Welsh flag on the back. The leathers followed paul from country to country and went with him in the end.

 He developed a taste for motor bikes early on, and Paul and Pete Edwards travelled to see the TT races in the Isle of  Man where he was fascinated by Giacomo Agostini. Another racer Paul greatly admired was Mike Hailwood.  His mother Rene bought his first motorbike for him, and went and watched him race, attempting to keep the fact unknown to his dad. Unfortunately when racing at the circuit at Brands Hatch, he went down on his bike and received severe injuries including a concussion that put him in a coma.

 Paul moved to London in the early 70’s, and the Imperial pub and a flat in Radcliffe Gardens, Chelsea which became the main venue for many parties, music and good times with friends. 

 In 1974 he met Lorraine while working in London and they moved to Holland, living in Amsterdam and Naarden for a while. It is here that he purchased a 750 cc Ducati (after crashing another bike on an icy wooden bridge on his way home from work) and decided to race again. Upon their return to England, they ended up in Boreham Wood in the outskirts of London, and home to the Bladon brothers who helped immensely as they were club racers themselves on classic BSA bikes.  Many weekends were spent club racing at Snetterton, Cadwell Park and other venues, and Paul had his dreams come true racing his beloved Ducati in the Isle of Man and completing the grueling 37 mile race. Lorraine and Paul both continued to race their bikes after moving to Clipston near Market Harborough. They bought a house in this small rural village but decided to take computer contracts in California for 6 months in 1981 and left the house rented fully planning on returning. They both remained in California and were together until May 1985, living in Belmont and Redwood City, south of San Francisco. They remained friends and he visited her and her husband and son, Scott in their house in Grass Valley.

 Paul married Barbara and received his “green card” allowing him to reside in the USA permanently. When they split, he found himself a room with Jane Harper (now Jane Sullivan) who was a land lady but who also became a close friend. Hopefully she will fill in some of the blanks during the years the early 90’s, but much time was spent with kindred spirits from Liverpool and Ireland in the pubs of San Mateo and San Francisco.  That was until the fateful night when he was found unconscious on the pavement in the early hours and was back in hospital again in a coma. This time he nearly did not make it through, but thanks to Jane, her brother and others, he was kept on life support and did regain consciousness. He was left with weakness on one side and had to use a cane. His physical condition gradually deteriorated over the years, but his spirit remained. According to friends who knew him at Lesley Terrace in Belmont where he died on Sept. 22nd, 2012, he still had a twinkle in his eye, a wicked sense of humor and a friendly, cheeky smile that many of us will long remember. 

If anyone is interested in making a donation in Paul's name, Lorraine's suggestion is www.mercycorps.org/tags/soccerforlife which incorporates two great charities (Mercy Corps and Partners in Health) and supports soccer and mentoring for impoverished kids in Haiti.


Latest Tributes

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Memory Memorial Tribute
From: LorraineHall
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Would like to thank those at Lesley Terrace on Tuesday 10/09/12 for all the kind words. It was good to know he had p...
Comment Memorial Tribute
From: LorraineHall
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I know many are nervous about giving out their email addresses, so can I recommend that you set up a new temporary on...
Memory Memorial Tribute
From: HenryB
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Paul and I became friends in London in the early 1970’s. The scene was bohemian, we moved flats often. I was very nai...
Memory Memorial Tribute
From: jn6147
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I knew both Lorraine and Paul long before they met. Lorraine was a school friend of my younger sister Pat when we liv...
Heart Memorial Tribute
From: LorraineHall
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Despite the years since we parted, still in my thoughts and always will be.


Fathers Name: Arthur Franklin
Mothers Name: Irene Franklin (maiden Irene Welch)
Siblings Names: Living: Joni Harris, Cliff Franklin
Country of Birth: Wales
Country of Residence: USA
City of Residence: Belmont
Occupation: Information Technology & Telecommunications
Marital Status: Divorced
Religion: Not Religious


Favourite Sport: Soccer
Favourite Team: Everton
Favourite Music Genre: Rock
Other Interests:
Motor cycle racing


Place of Passing: Lesley Terrace, Belmont, CA
Date of Passing: 22 September 2012

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