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Remembering Frank Fenton

 

August 10, 2005

 

by KATIE SABATINO
WTAP News, Parkersburg, WV


Fenton Art Glass was a flurry of activity Wednesday as shoppers tried their best to buy that perfect piece, but underneath the surface is a feeling of loss and sadness as the company workers remember the life of Frank Fenton, who passed away Tuesday afternoon.

"First and most of all he was a great friend," says Anna Stull, a Fenton employee for 27 years.

Frank Fenton was president of the company for 40 years since 1948. Workers say he was most well known for his compassion, wisdom and good deeds that he continued almost to the day he died.

"He was a great leader in the community of Williamstown. He's done so many things that people don't even know about," says working foreman, Ron Dick.

Workers say he was just one of the people, and always made them feel like equals.

Stull says she will always remember the last time she saw Mr. Fenton.

"During the celebration he came over in a van and I got to wave to him and tell him hi and that I loved him. I wish I could have spent more time with him," she says.

For Stull and many others, Mr. Fenton was more a father figure than a boss. The Fenton family declined to go on camera, but did give their thoughts on his death.

"It will be the simple things that will stand out to me. He was very wise and always trying to teach you something," says Scott Fenton, Frank's grandson.

"At this point the family is celebrating his accomplishments in his life. I think he was ready for this to happen," says George Fenton, Frank's son and now company president.

And now, even though Frank Fenton is gone, he leaves behind a legacy of love and leadership for others to look up to

Visitation hours will be at the Williamstown First United Methodist Church this Friday from 6-8 p.m. and Saturday 10-noon.

The memorial will be held Saturday at 2 p.m.

The family is asking that donations be made to the First United Methodist Church instead of flowers.

 

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Visitors to Fenton Art Glass will find a spacious Gift Shop and a pleasant museum. Free factory tours (M-F 8:15am to 4:00pm) take small groups of guests right out to the factory floor to see glassmaking "up close and personal." Friendly, knowledgeable tour guides explain all aspects of the operation. The Fenton tour has been ranked among the "top 10" factory tours nationwide by USA Today. In addition we have been named Rand McNally Best of the Road for 2006. For a factory tour schedule, click here. For a map, click here.

 

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