Frank Henry Hagaman Jr.
Frank Henry Hagaman Jr., 96, died November 24 in Jackson.
Hagaman was the only child and son of Frank Henry Hagaman, M.D., and Edwina Short Hagaman. His father, an orthopedic surgeon, delivered him at the old Charity Hospital, now Baptist Medical Complex, May 31, 1922. He attended grammar school at Power School where First Presbyterian Church now stands, Riverside Military Academy and the McCallie School where he was the late Sonny Montgomery’s “freshman” before completing his secondary education at Central High School in Jackson. He spent one year at Tulane University before enlisting for three years in the U.S. Army Air Corp. He was in flight training for many types of aircraft such as the Stearman, but lastly as a B-17 Bomber pilot. World War II ended just before he was to be sent overseas into active duty.
In 1945, Lt. Hagaman married Catherine Lawson Richardson, and after he was discharged from the service, they lived in New Orleans until he was awarded his degree in business administration from Tulane. They moved back to their hometown of Jackson and became parents of two daughters, Catherine Hagaman (David) Edwards and Frances Van Dyke Hagaman (who preceded him in death).
Hagaman began his professional career as a Certified Public Accountant with his cousin, Dick Quin, and in 1958 opened his own CPA firm, Hagaman and Associates. As the years passed, the firm grew and was distinguished by an innovative approach to computers and other new technologies as well as leadership roles in the Mississippi Society of CPAs. He had a rare talent for recruiting, hiring and mentoring outstanding college graduates in the field of accounting for his firm. According to a former associate, Hagaman “exhibited an example of integrity and the basic principles for goodness. He conveyed genuine interest in the welfare of his employees and he expected these same traits and qualities in others, and from others.” Some of those he hired are still partners with the firm and others remained until their retirement.
Hagaman retired in 1981 and pursued other business opportunities for the next 25 years. He was awarded a key to the city by the late Mayor Russell C. Davis as well as commendation for his charitable service to the Hurricane Task Force following Katrina by the Mission to North America of the Presbyterian Church in America.
He lost his wife of 47 years in 1992, and later met and married Mary Ingram Word, of Leland. They enjoyed 25 years of marriage and he was welcomed into her large family with Mississippi Delta roots.
Hagaman enjoyed flying his private airplane, fishing off the coasts of Louisiana and Mississippi, and especially his years teaching Sunday School to sixth-graders at First Presbyterian Church, where he was a lifelong member and elder. He played a pivotal role in establishing the television ministry at the church. He and his wife, Catherine, also were privileged to serve twice as missionaries and business manager in Liberia for African Bible College. In his later years he enjoyed living in the home his mother built, walking in his Fondren neighborhood and visiting his three grandchildren at the coast or New Orleans.
Hagaman is survived by his second wife, Mary, his daughter Catherine, three grandchildren, four great-grandchildren and cousins.
A private military graveside service was held at the family plot in Lakewood Cemetery on his mother’s birthday with his cousin, the Rev. Brister Hagaman Ware, officiating. In a poignant, loving letter to his grandchildren on his 81st birthday, he asked that for his birthday present that each of them read two chapters of the booklet, Know Why you Believe, and closed with “I love you and take care of yourselves. Papa”
Memorials may be made to a charity of choice.