Frank K. Springer

In Taps by rapsheet

Portland Retired Police  &

Widows Association



                                                                                                         Frank K. Springer


Frank K. Springer died peacefully at the age of 102 on March 8th, 2015 at Emanuel Hospital in Portland, Oregon.  Frank was born in Lebanon, Oregon on March 24, 1912.  He graduated from Washington High School in Portland, Oregon and was employed as a postman and furniture finisher before being hired by the Portland Police Bureau in 1938 as a patrolman. He quickly worked up to lieutenant and played a large role in shutting down illegal gambling and prostitution in the city as head of the Vice Squad. In 1962, he became captain and inspector shortly after. Frank retired in August 1973, but stayed involved in preserving the Police Bureau’s history at the Portland Police Museum.


Frank is an accomplished glass artist and lapidarist.  He made many covered wagons from petrified wood and they are of such high quality that Omsi displays them for several months each year. 

Springer is also an oral historian. Family friend Dave Mazza started filming “Frank’s Town” about two years ago. It’s a documentary about Portland during Springer’s lifetime.”He’s a wonderful source of information and it’s a lot of important history that needs to be preserved,” Mazza said. “It’s not often you find someone who’s such an important part of a city and institution.” Frank is happy to talk all day. “At 102, I’m so old I can say what I want to,” he laughed.

Frank was preceded in death by his wife of over 50 years, Jerri Springer, with whom he eloped in 1934, and a son Frank, Jr.  He is survived by his son Larry, five grandchildren, and eight great grandchildren.

The funeral service for Frank Springer will be held at Wilhelm’s Portland Memorial, 6705 SE 14th Avenue, Portland, Oregon 503-236-4141 on this Friday at 1 pm, March 13th, 2015.  It is open to the public.  Chaplain Ed Stelle will officiate.  In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Portland Police Museum. For online condolences please visit