Winter 2018–2019

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Distinguished Residents: Frank & Joan Lahrman

Loving Life at Three Oaks

Frank & Joan Lahrman

Three Oaks Assisted Living & Memory Care Cary, Illinois


Both Joan and Frank were born in Covington, Kentucky, to German families — Frank in January 1933, Joan in January 1934. They were both third children of four, and Frank was the only boy in his family. Joan enjoyed dances and movies and spending time with friends. Frank played the trumpet in the marching band. Though they were friends in high school, they didn’t start dating until after Frank returned from service.

A Legacy of Service

Frank’s parents were first generation German immigrants, his father was in the German Army during WWI. After the end of the war, Frank’s father walked for nine months from the South of France to Northern Germany to get home. He left Germany for America when he saw the Hitler era coming. Once in America, Frank’s father was American to the core. 

Two months after graduating from high school, Frank received his draft notice and eagerly joined the Navy to serve his country in the Korean War. He spent 22 months on the USS Stribling DD-867 as a radioman. 


Building a Life

While Frank was in the service, Joan worked for the American Book Co. in their financial department. When he returned to Covington, Frank and Joan were reacquainted through mutual friends and dated for several years before getting married. Frank initially worked for the Veterans Administration in Cincinnati, Ohio, until a family friend got him a job with the Mobil Oil Corporation where Frank remained for 36 years.  


Starting a Family

While Frank advanced in his career, Joan was busy raising the ever-growing family and adjusting to multiple moves to different states.  From Kentucky, they moved to Ohio followed by Michigan and Illinois. Even though their last move took them to Pennsylvania, it was in Illinois that they spent the most time raising their children. Ultimately, they decided to retire to Three Oaks Assisted Living & Memory Care in Cary, Illinois. Their seven children (four boys and three girls) all stayed in the area and were beginning to have families of their own at the time. Frank and Joan have been married 61 years and are now the proud grandparents of 19 grandchildren and great-grandparents to four, with the prospect for many more!


Life at Three Oaks

Frank and Joan enjoy life at Three Oaks due in large part to the friendliness of the staff and the camaraderie with their fellow residents. Joan is a member of the bell choir, and they both attend many of the activities offered. Frank keeps everyone smiling with his quick wit and good sense of humor, even joking that Joan is a saint to have put up with him all these years.