We Remember: Frank Lee Washington III – FEBRUARY 22, 1953 – JANUARY 26, 2024

Frank Lee Washington III passed away unexpectedly but peacefully in his Lansing home on January 26, 2024. He was 70.

Frank, a Detroit native, loved being around friends and family — not as the center of attention, but instead sitting quietly off to the side, stoically observing others with a smile.

His observant nature served him well in his 31-year career as a detective sergeant with the Michigan State Police, from which he retired in 2010. During his watch, Det. Sgt. Washington — known to many in his ranks as “Boom Boom” — received numerous accolades for his abilities as a detective and his dedication to public safety. Yet true to his nature, Frank rarely talked about his awards, lest he bring too much attention to himself.

After retiring from the state police, Frank worked as a driving instructor, conducting road tests for students. He chose this as his later career because of his love for helping others. And once again, he was able to let someone else take the wheel as he sat and closely observed.

Frank loved doting on his beautiful grandchildren, playing cards with “The Crew” every Saturday night, visiting family back home in Detroit, following Michigan sports teams and traveling with Jody, his adoring wife of 22 years. 

Frank was thrilled about the Lions’ deep playoff run this season and was looking forward to a trip with Jody to Southeast Asia this spring. Although it will be difficult, she still plans to go, as that’s exactly what Frank would want: “Don’t fuss over me, honey.”

During his time on Earth, Frank avoided the limelight and preferred to remain in the background, basking in the glow of loved ones. In his next chapter, Frank continues to do much the same, contently observing — only now from a much higher perch.

Frank was preceded in death by his father, Frank Lee Washington II. He is survived by his mother, Allie Mae Washington; his wife, Jody Washington; his children, Frank Lee Washington IV, Samara (Thomas) Morgan and Adam (Angela) Hussain, Waltrell Watson, and Frazier Savage; siblings Ronald (Lessie) Washington, Rosalind (Hurbert) Jackson, Jerald (Elaine) Washington, Brenda (in mem. Ed) Altuna, Cynthia Washington, and Andrae (Marquissa) Washington; as well as eight grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews.

Public visitation occurred at 11 a.m. on Sunday, February 4, 2024 at Gorsline Runciman Funeral Home, 900 E. Michigan Avenue in Lansing. The memorial service will follow at noon.

Frank donated regularly to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, and the family encourages monetary gifts in his memory to St. Jude’s to help improve the lives of children with cancer, blood disorders, and other life-threatening diseases.