Radella had an All-Star career as the center and Captain of
the University of Wyoming football team. He forged his
leadership skills in high school serving as senior
Co-Captain of both the Midland Leopards’ football and
Frank was born and raised in Midland,
where he was a three year starter in football and a two year
starter in basketball. He graduated in 1951.
The sport in which Frank excelled most was
football. He played center in the Tennessee-style single
wing offense and linebacker on defense. He was twice named
All-Beaver County and was First Team All-WPIAL in his senior
year. This was before two platoon football and the players
on the field actually called the plays. Frank also played
all 60 minutes in the annual East-West Beaver County
In 1951, the T-formation was rapidly
becoming the offense of choice with college teams. Some
die-hard major colleges continued to run the single wing.
Several of these schools; Clemson, Arkansas, Brown, Fresno
State and Wyoming, recruited Frank. Clemson and Wyoming had
played in and won the Orange and Gator Bowls, respectively,
that year and, at that time, there were only eight Bowl
games total, compared to over three dozen today.
Frank accepted a full scholarship to the
University of Wyoming and made the travelling squad as a 180
pound freshman. As a member of the varsity, he started for
the Cowboys at center for the following three seasons. In
1954, as a 6’1” 200 pound senior, he was elected the ‘Pokes’
Team Captain. He was selected to the Skyline 8 Conference
All-Star team as a center and played in the Salad Bowl in
Tempe, Arizona on New Year’s Day 1955.
Following his senior year, and with only
12 teams in the NFL, Frank received letters of interest from
the Cleveland Browns, Philadelphia Eagles, Chicago Cardinals
and Washington Redskins. He was drafted by the Redskins, but
made the decision to continue his schooling and acquire his
degree, instead of reporting to Redskin Camp.
Frank majored in Geology and earned his
Bachelor of Science degree. He was hired by the Carter Oil
Company, which later became part of EXXON. He was employed
as a Petroleum Geologist exploring for oil in the Williston
Basin of Montana and North Dakota. After five years with
Carter Oil, he struck out on his own as an Independent
Consulting Geologist. Frank explored for oil and gas in the
Northern Rockies, Canada and Alaska. He was successful in
helping to discover and develop many new oil and gas fields.
After a distinguished, exciting, and fulfilling 48-year
career, he retired in 2004.
Frank balanced working in the oil fields
with involvement with his community. He was active with the
Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts. He participated in the Crusillo,
Marriage and Engaged Encounter movements within the Catholic
Church. He was an officer with the Montana Geologic Society,
for which he gave talks and published papers.
Frank was married to his marvelous bride,
Pat, for 50 years before losing her to illness in 2010. Pat
and Frank are the proud parents of four loving children;
Denise, Karen, Michele, and Frank II. They have 4
grandchildren. Frank resides in Billings, Montana.