The world lost a great man and heaven gained another angel. On Sunday, July 9, 2017, Rodney George "Frogman" Clark, passed away peacefully at his home in Elk River, with his loving wife by his side.
Rod was born Dec. 10, 1947, in Lewiston, to Homer Marion and Elsie Mae Taylor Clark, who have opened their arms to welcome him into heaven. Also meeting him is his beloved father-in-law, Raymond Jack Cole.
Rod graduated from Lewiston High School in 1966 and joined the U.S. Navy. After completing boot camp, Rod was accepted into the Navy SEAL Training Program in Coronado, Calif. Rod went to Vietnam in 1967, where he did two tours as a Special Forces Navy Seal. Among his many duties, he specialized as a frogman. After his discharge from active duty, Rod served in the Naval Reserves until 1971.
After Rod returned home, he worked at the Blount bullet factory and Pepsi Cola warehouse. He then took a job with the city of Lewiston, where he worked his way up to street maintenance supervisor, retiring after 25 years, and made his home in Elk River.
One of Rod's most rewarding jobs was aiding the Idaho State Police as a scuba diver, helping families recover their loved ones and vehicles from the Clearwater and Snake rivers. Rod's passions in life were fishing, hunting, snowmobiling and most of all he loved to ride his Harley-Davidson. When Rod wasn't enjoying the outdoors, he loved to sit and read books by his favorite author, Harold Robbins. His two favorite companions, "Gizmo" and "Chewy," could always be found by his side.
For the first time since coming home from Vietnam, Rod found peace when he met Greta Cole, also a military veteran, who soon became his best friend and wife in 1991. It was obvious to those who knew them they were destined to be soul mates. Rod and Greta were each other's partners in life's adventures. She was his "biker-babe" and caretaker until the end.
Rod found an even deeper peace and place of belonging when the CVR (Combat Vet Riders) Motorcycle Club found him in 2005 and opened their hearts and arms to him. He knew from that day forward he would never have to look over his shoulder again. He knew his military brothers and sisters would have his back until he joined his SEAL teams again in heaven.
Rod is survived by his wife, Greta, at their home in Elk River; his sons, Troy Clark, Steven Bellavance, Bryan May, Chad Clark and Sean Clark; and daughters Karen Richardson, Honey Lynn Sychtysz, Rhonda Clark and Traci Clark. He is also survived by his brothers, Gary "Bunyan" Clark, Terry "Butch" Clark, Jerry "Buzz" Clark, Craig "Smokie" Taylor, Mark Clark and Larry Clark; and sisters Tana Abbott and Judy Bigalow.
Rod has too many grandchildren to name, all of whom he loved and enjoyed spending time with, some of whom gave him the joy of great-grandchildren. He is also survived by his mother-in-law, Naomi Inez Cole.
A memorial service and celebration of Rod's life will be held at 1 p.m. Saturday in Elk River at Merrill Park. Chaplain Richard "Precious" Hemming and President "Taz" of the Combat Vet Riders, along with the Navy Honor Guard, will conduct the service. A covered-dish lunch will follow at the gazebo at the park.
In lieu of flowers, Rod requested donations be made to the CVR Motorcycle Club, P.O. Box 11162, Spokane Valley, WA 99211; or at their website www.combatvetriders.org.donation.
Arrangements have been entrusted to Short's Funeral Chapel, Moscow, and online condolences may be sent to www.shortsfuneralchapel.net.