Cover photo for Frank Burton Craige's Obituary
Frank Burton Craige Profile Photo
1946 Frank Burton 2022

Frank Burton Craige

December 4, 1946 — June 23, 2022

View Funeral Webcast Frank Burton Craige V Obituary Frank Burton Craige V, 75, of Point Clear, Alabama, died June 23 at his home in Sapphire, North Carolina. To know Burton was to love him. He refused to let anyone be a stranger and his disarming nature would put anyone at ease. Never one to take himself too seriously, he delighted in a practical joke, a cold Coke, and vanilla ice cream. He was always there to lend a helping hand and to offer advice when you needed it most. Whether you served him a steak at Houston’s, met him in line at the movie theater, or knew him your whole life, you found yourself lucky to be in his company. You simply never forgot how Burton made you feel. A proud native of Columbia, Tennessee, he was born December 4, 1946 to the late Dorothy Adwell Craige and Frank Burton Craige IV. He graduated from the Columbia Military Academy and Memphis State University, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in advertising and was a member of Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity. After graduating in 1969, he remained in Memphis, where he met the love of his life, Leslie. They married in 1970 and shortly thereafter moved back to Columbia when Burton took a job with the American Wood Council. In 1976, he was promoted to manager of marketing services and was transferred to their Washington, D.C. office. In 1978, Burton and his family moved to Atlanta where he began his thirty-year career with Southern Progress Corporation. He joined the company as regional marketing manager for Southern Living magazine. Over the years, he held several leadership roles, including southern marketing director, vice president, publisher of the Homes Group, and senior vice president. Dubbed the “Father of the Southern Living Homes Group,” he was instrumental in the development of the Idea House Program. He also initiated the group’s House Plans business and helped start the Custom Builder Program. In 1992, he received Time Inc.’s highest honor, the President’s Award, for the “outstanding contributions” the Homes Group made to the company. In 1996 he took on a new role as founding publisher of Coastal Living magazine, making it the fastest growing start-up at Southern Progress since Southern Living. While he had many professional achievements during his tenure at Southern Progress, he was most fulfilled by the lifelong friendships he forged and the opportunities to mentor others throughout his career. After retiring in 2008, he and Leslie sought a coastal life of their own and moved to the water’s edge on the Mobile Bay in Point Clear, Alabama, not far from his family’s cottage he grew up visiting on Perdido Bay. In 2021, they bought a home in Sapphire, North Carolina, to be closer to family while continuing to spend time in Point Clear. Burton was a homebuilder at heart, though not in a traditional sense. He cared deeply about creating a genuine sense of home for his family. While rooted in his beloved Columbia, Burton would build a home wherever he found himself, and would dream of the homes he might create in the future. Above all, Burton cherished his family. He was always happiest when surrounded by his wife Leslie, their three children and nine grandchildren in the home he had created for them. He is survived by his wife of 51 years, Leslie Kraich Craige, and his three children: Emily Craige Gately (Brian) of Atlanta, GA, Frank Burton Craige VI (Rachel Oxford) of Leiper’s Fork, TN, and John Crawford Craige (Nele Schlafke) of Asheville, NC. He was a loving grandfather (“Papa Bear”) to Caroline Adelaide, John Peter, and Thomas Riordan Gately; Claire Oxford, Oliver Burton, and Catherine Leigh Craige; Matilda Emily, Lukas Crawford, and Henry John Craige. He is also survived by his sister, Mary Moore Hoover, his nephew Robert Craige Hoover (Ceri Givans) and son Luke Craige Hoover of Nashville, TN. The family will hold a visitation on Friday, July 8th at 4:00pm to 6:00pm at Oakes and Nichols Funeral Home, 320 W 7th St., Columbia, TN 38401. Funeral services will be held on Saturday, July 9 at 3:30 p.m. at First Presbyterian Church, 801 South High St., Columbia, TN 38401 followed by a burial at Arlington Cemetery, 1109 S Main St., Mt Pleasant, TN 38474. A reception and celebration of Burton’s life will begin at 6:00pm at Graymere Country Club, 2100 Country Club Ln., Columbia, TN 38401. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to The Miracle League of Columbia at Maury County Park. To learn more about this initiative of building an all-inclusive playground and baseball field in Columbia, please visit Donations can be made through their website or by mailing a check to P.O. Box 654, Spring Hill, TN, 37174.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Friday, July 8, 2022

4:00 - 6:00 pm (Eastern time)

Oakes & Nichols Funeral Home

320 West 7th Street, Columbia, TN 38401

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Funeral Service

Saturday, July 9, 2022

Starts at 3:30 pm (Eastern time)

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