Brother “Billy Franks” laid to rest -one of the earliest members of NAE has passed away

Also we will broadcast His memorial service LIVE on Thursday April 28, 2016 at 11am C.S.T. at

Brother Franks (Billy) was one of the early evangelist involved with the association and in his later years encouraged us “younger” folk who wanted to share Christ with us. He will be deeply missed.

Brother Franks (Billy) was one of the early evangelist involved with the association and in his later years encouraged us “younger” folk who wanted to share Christ with us. He will be deeply missed.

Reverend Doctor William D. “Brother Billy” Franks, Sr.
February 25, 1926 – April 24, 2016

William “Brother Billy” Franks went home to be with his Savior on Sunday April 24, 2016 after a courageous battle with cancer. He was 90 years old. Funeral Services will be held Thursday, April 28, 2016 at 11 a.m. at Oakmont Church of God, 5925 West 70th Street, Shreveport, (318) 687-5243. Visitation will be held at Oakmont Church on Wednesday, April 27, 2016 from 5 to 8 p.m. Interment will be held at Forrest Park West Cemetery immediately following the service on Thursday.

Brother Billy was born on February 25th, 1926 in Cedar Grove, Louisiana. He was the youngest child of George Watson and Pearl Galloway Franks.

At a very early age he attended the 62nd Street Church of God and was saved while attending a church camp at the age of 12. He attended Fairfield Elementary School and graduated from C.E. Byrd High School in 1943. About a year after graduation, he joined the United States Army and, after training, was sent to the Philippines to serve with the 22nd Base Postal Unit in Manila. He always joked that he lived across the street from General MacArthur; the General, in the Manila Hotel, and Brother Billy, in a pup tent. In 1946, he returned to Shreveport and attended Centenary College where he met his future wife, Lottie Mae Hood. They were married on August 29, 1947 and together realized that God was calling them to the ministry and a life of service. In July 1949, the young couple began holding church services in their home and Brother Billy founded the Oakmont Church of God. As the congregation grew, they held services in a local Boy Scout hut and eventually moved the church to a building on West 71st Street. Over the years, the church has moved to larger facilities, ultimately locating at its current location on West 70th Street in Shreveport.
Brother Billy always felt the call to spread the word of God and in 1976 went to Guatemala to minister to the people after a series of devastating earthquakes. This was the first of many mission trips, work camps, conferences, mission conventions and revivals he would organize and participate in through the years in Guatemala, Honduras, Peru, Bolivia, Argentina, Columbia, Mexico, Kenya, the People’s Republic of China, Dominican Republic and Eagle Pass, Texas. In 1983 he worked with the Inter-American Conference of the Church of God to establish the work of the Church of God in the Dominican Republic. He also formed the Missionary Action Projects, a non-profit organization to coordinate and consolidate the efforts of numerous Churches of God to support missionaries and mission projects around the globe. His hands-on work in the Dominican Republic led to numerous new churches and a school with over 1000 students which serves children from kindergarten through high school.
He was a leader in the Church of God and served on the Board of Trustees of Mid-America Bible College (now Mid-America Christian University) for fifteen years. He was Chairman of the Church of God Association of Evangelist and served in various positions in the Louisiana Assembly of the Church of God including Chairmanship of the Louisiana Ministerial Fellowship. In 1996 he was granted an Honorary Doctorate of Divinity by Mid America Bible College. Brother Billy has mentored, educated, advised, counseled and guided numerous budding young pastors in their journey to becoming ordained.
After retiring from his position as Senior Pastor at Oakmont Church of God, Brother Billy moved to The Stiles at the Glen approximately four years ago where he continued his ministry by conducting weekly Sunday School classes and a Men’s Bible Study group. Brother Billy began every prayer by saying, “God, you have been so good to us”. He was truly kindhearted and a source of comfort and limitless compassion. He was a gentle man who dedicated his life to God and who, tirelessly and with steadfast faith, was a beacon of light and inspiration to people around the world, serving God for over sixty-six years.
Brother Billy was preceded in death by his parents, George Watson and Pearl Galloway Franks, his wife Lottie Mae Franks, son Murray Franks, brothers Jewell Franks, Marshall Franks, Ray Franks, Tillman Franks, and sister, Mary Franks Campisi.

He is survived by his son William Derrel Franks, Jr. and wife Sandy, daughter Kathy Sullivan and husband Bill, daughter-in-law, Betty Franks, Grandchildren Alicia Franks Gibson and husband Troy, William Derrel Franks, III, Scott Sullivan and wife Mindy, Cody Sullivan and wife Rita, Madison Franks Thompson and husband Tyler, Jeffrey Belden and wife Ashley and Thomas O’Hara and wife Angie. Great Grandchildren William Derrel Franks, IV, Kalli Ruffin, Ally Sullivan, Taylor Sullivan, Emily Sullivan, Claire Sullivan, Alexis Thompson, Nolan Thompson, Kennedy Belden, and Michael Mark Belden, as well as numerous nieces, nephews, cousins and in-laws.

The family would like to thank Dr. Charles Hargon and his staff at Willis Knighton North as well as the staff at The Stiles at the Glen for their loving and dedicated care they provided to Brother Billy.
The family suggests that memorials be made to the Missionary Action Projects in the name of Brother Billy Franks @ P.O. Box 1131, Kilgore, Texas 75663-1131.