Cover photo for Dr. Frank Singletary's Obituary
Dr. Frank Singletary Profile Photo
1948 Dr. 2022

Dr. Frank Singletary

August 18, 1948 — October 20, 2022

Spartanburg, SC

Dr. Frank Joe Singletary was born on August 18, 1948 in Florence, South Carolina. He grew up working on his parents’ farm with his three younger sisters in Coward, SC, before enrolling at Clemson University. He loved his time at Clemson, and years later often regaled his children with stories of his undergraduate days, bringing his wife and children there for homecoming and regularly watching Tiger football games. After graduating with his B.S. in May of 1970, he first enrolled in dentistry school, before transferring to the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, which he claimed was due to the more relaxed dress code. Those who knew him knew this was part of his characteristic humor, since he was an exceptional physician who cared deeply for his patients. After earning his M.D. in December of 1974, he began his Family Practice Residency in January 1975 at Spartanburg Regional Medical Center, where he was recognized as Outstanding Family Practice Resident in OB/GYN. He graduated in December 1977 and joined the Active Medical Staff on February 3, 1978. A board certified physician in both Emergency Medicine and Family Medicine, he served on dozens of committees at both Spartanburg Regional and Mary Black Memorial Hospital. He was also Department Chair of Emergency Medicine from 1994 to 1997 and Chief of Staff from 1998 to 1999. He was dedicated to continuing education and received the ACEP Recognition Award for Continuing Medical Education many times throughout his career. Described by his fellow doctors as “a steadfast and caring advisor for colleagues and residents,” he enjoyed sharing his knowledge and experience, first as Clinical Instructor from 1978 to 1988, and later as Assistant Clinical Professor of Family Medicine (SRMC/MUSC). He took care of countless patients, who frequently commented on his compassionate manner and personal attention, for over 30 years, until retiring on February 3, 2013 from practice at the hospital and becoming Honorary Staff.

Medicine was not his only passion. He loved the outdoors, and shared this interest with his wife, Gayle Lillard Singletary, whom he married in 1978, and his three children. He spent as much time as possible outside, whether exploring the neighborhood by foot or bike, paddling around the lake, or on more challenging adventures. He was an avid skier, who took on black diamond slopes throughout North America. As a whitewater canoeist, kayaker, and rafter, he paddled local rivers, such as the Nantahala, the Green, and the Ocoee. He also traveled throughout South and Central America seeking new and challenging experiences on the water. He especially enjoyed the majestic beauty of the Grand Canyon, where he paddled the Colorado River on various multi-day trips, first in a fiberglass canoe with his wife alongside him in a raft, and later in a raft with his oldest daughter and an oar-rig with his son. Those who had the chance to share the river with him will recall the unique sound of his laugh.

At home in both the mountains and at the beach, he said he chose Spartanburg for its proximity to both, and he took full advantage of the Blue Ridge and the coast. He took his family on many camping trips, hikes, and beach excursions, instilling in his children an enthusiasm for outdoor recreation and an appreciation for nature: his son snowboards, kayaks, and rafts; his oldest daughter skis and kayaks; and his youngest daughter runs marathons, hikes, and is an avid birder. He supported his children in their varied interests, even accompanying his youngest daughter to riding lessons and climbing astride a few horses himself.

He had great fun riding motorcycles, whether to scenic sights nearby, in enduro races, or on longer trips to Mexico or Key West. He enjoyed hiking to waterfalls, walking on the beach, playing in the ocean waves, and sitting around a fire. He loved animals, driving his Miata, listening to rock music, wearing fleece vests and sandals with socks, and eating ice cream or a good sandwich. He adored his dogs, Darcy and Cooper, as well as the family’s cats throughout the years. Most recently, he took several wonderful trips with his family throughout the U.S., Europe, and South America.

He will be remembered by his wife of over 40 years, Gayle Lillard Singletary; his children and their families, Dr. Jennifer Elizabeth Singletary, Christopher Frank Singletary and his wife, Emily, Dr. Brittany Anne Singletary, her husband, Kevin, and their daughter, Finley; his sisters, Dr. Loretta Singletary and Marie Schuster; and his niece and nephews. His younger sister, Dr. Eva Singletary, passed on in 2015.

His memory will live on through his family, friends, and the many patients and colleagues whose lives he touched. We will continue to see him smiling down from the mountains, up from the rivers, and across ocean waves.

A Celebration of Life will be 1:00 pm Tuesday, November 29, 2022 at Glendale Shoals Bridge, 104 Emma Cudd Road, Spartanburg, SC 29302. Close friends and family are welcome.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to American Whitewater (, the Spartanburg Humane Society (, or Spartanburg Area Conservancy (

Floyd’s North Church Street Chapel

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Dr. Frank Singletary, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Celebration of Life

Tuesday, November 29, 2022

Starts at 1:00 pm (Eastern time)

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