Francis B. Weiskopf, Jr. (Frank) was born in Baltimore, MD on January 4, 1945, to Francis Weiskopf, Sr. and Rita Weiskopf. The second of four children, he grew up in Perry Hall and graduated from Overlea High School in Baltimore, where he excelled in both academics and athletics. He spent his summers working in the Bethlehem Steel mills in Sparrows Point with his father.
Following in his father’s footsteps, he attended Lehigh University in Bethlehem, PA where he earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Engineering Mechanics. Frank’s passion for learning led him next to Princeton University where he earned a Master of Science degree in Aerospace Mechanical Sciences, and a Master of Arts with Proficiency in German and French. While this may seem like plenty of education to the average person, Frank desired further education and went on to attend Johns Hopkins University to pursue a PhD. He could frequently be found reading academic papers in his down time, even in retirement.
A second generation American whose grandparents immigrated from Germany, Frank was immensely interested in and proud of his German heritage. He never tired of listening to the country’s native music, learning the language, reading German magazines and tracing his ancestry. Additionally, he toured through Germany countless times to further his knowledge and appreciation of the country’s history. He was a long-standing member of the Baltimore Kickers, a German Soccer and Travel club.
He first met his wife, Kitty, at a dance. They continued to enjoy dancing together for many years. They also enjoyed entertaining friends and family in their home in Catonsville and cultivated a large circle of devoted friends who remained close throughout their life together. His friends knew him to be a kind, pleasant and gentle man who enjoyed conversations involving politics, history and business.
Frank loved to travel. He and Kitty spent a great deal of time each year traveling to destinations including much of Europe, Mexico, Canada, Central America, as well as destinations all over the United States. During his travels, he was able to practice another passion, photography. His photography skills are evident throughout his studies of still life and landscapes.
Frank’s professional life spanned over a 45-year period. He was the consummate engineer who lived and breathed his chosen career. Frank joined the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory in 1977. During his tenure, he grew as a supervisor and technical leader in groups engaged in a variety of activities, from modeling and analysis of fluid flows to information systems development. During his years at APL, Frank was best known for using his outstanding engineering and analytical skills to help define, develop, and analyze information systems. He was a major contributor to several projects on which he was awarded patents for his work. Throughout his career, Frank was lauded for his excellent writing, ability to structure solutions in uncertainty, and understanding of intelligent systems engineering.
Nothing in his life could rival the love and pride he felt for his family. His two sons – Kirk and Will, daughter-in-law Angel, and subsequently, his grandchildren – Maggie, Johnathan, Hawthorn, Flint and Nicholas, were his shining stars. His sons knew him to be a steadfast anchor in their lives, a father who provided wisdom and moral guidance, and who was always there to answer their questions or just to listen. Frank valued experience in the outdoors and, during their childhood, took his boys camping and canoeing in areas of West Virginia, Maryland, Oregon, Montana and Washington state.
Like his own father, he passed to his children an enthusiasm for athletics by coaching little league lacrosse for years and later supporting their traveling team sports. Frank also communicated the value of education to his boys, helping them set goals for higher education and helping them achieve their goals.
His grandchildren were a great source of joy for him and could animate him like nothing else, often joining him on trips to the Outer Banks, Hershey Park and other family vacations. Grandson Johnathan will remember the many Saturday mornings his grandfather accompanied him to his decoy wood-carving classes, and granddaughter Maggie will fondly remember him for instilling in her a love of 70’s music, much of which never left his Acura tape player for 20 years. You could always find Frank cheering on his grandchildren in their various sporting events, school programs and grandparents’ days.
After a courageous battle with pancreatic cancer, Frank departed this life on January 21, with his devoted wife and family by his side. He was preceded in death by his parents, Francis and Rita Weiskopf, as well as his brother, Rich Weiskopf (Donna). He is survived by his wife Kitty Weiskopf, his children, Kirk Weiskopf (Angel), Will Weiskopf, and stepson Jason Harbin, siblings Jerry Weiskopf (Pat) and Cecilia League, grandchildren Maggie, Johnathan, Hawthorn, Flint and Nicholas Weiskopf, as well as many cherished family members and friends.
In lieu of flowers the family has requested donations be made to the American Cancer Society.
A memorial service will be held at a later date.
To send sympathy gifts to the family or plant a tree in memory of Francis B. Weiskopf, Jr., please visit our tribute store.
American Cancer Society
P.O. Box 22478, Oklahoma OK 73123