By David Crane
david (at) defensereview (dot) com
June 29, 2020
This is a hard one. Just this past Friday, I was informed of the sudden, tragic death of my friend Frank DeSomma, Founder and CEO of Patriot Ordnance Factory (POF-USA) by Ernie Bray of NG2 Defense, during a totally unrelated phone conversation. Ernie’s words caught be completely by surprise. Frank died on June 18th in what appears to be a freak rollover car accident. Frank was only 57 years old. I was shocked and devastated to hear about it. So, much so, in fact, that I had to take a few days before I could write about it, or anything else for that matter, here. I’m still dealing with it. It’s difficult to come to terms with. It’s painful.
First, my thoughts and prayers for his good, kind soul, and for his family. I know most of what his children are experiencing right now through personal experience, and it’s awful. May God help them, his wife, and the rest of his family through this incredibly difficult time. It’s not just an incredible loss to them, however. It’s a HUGE loss to the tactical firearms industry and community. Frank was a really good designer/engineer, who made really cool firearms, and he loved doing it. As if that weren’t enough, he was a very good industry friend and professional contact, and was great at maintaining that friendship, and contact. If there was a major holiday, I was sure to receive a text wishing me a happy or merry one. If POF-USA came out with something new, I was sure to receive a text about that. When he’d see me at SHOT Show, he was always warm and welcoming, and generous with his time. I’m guessing I wasn’t alone in that regard. Something tells me he was this way with everyone, or at least with a lot of people.
Frank was really passionate about his company and products, and deservedly so. He worked very hard at making the best, coolest guns he could, and he was great at it. Just check out the “Related Articles” section below to see what those products are. Those products will continue to be great and interesting for quite some time. The problem is that moving forward, there’s simply no replacing Frank’s creative, innovative and passionate mind in developing new ones (and improving the current ones). He’s irreplaceable. So, not only does the DeSomma family have a major challenge in front of them in moving forward as a family, but they have perhaps an even more daunting challenge moving forward as a company, even though that’s most certainly not their primary focus at the moment.
But, it’s important…and it has to be important to them, because POF-USA was important to Frank. In addition to his children, POF-USA is Frank’s legacy to the world, and it’s worth maintaining and growing it if possible. Their current products are great, and will continue to be, but the main challenge before them will be maintaining Frank’s level of creativity and design innovation. But how do you continue to create and innovate without the company’s brain, heart and soul? I don’t know. It’s going to be a gigantic challenge. They’ll need to find another genius, an EQUAL genius, which isn’t going to be easy, and my be impossible. Some people are simply irreplaceable, and I think Frank was one of them. Once someone like him is gone, that’s it. Frank was the founder and chief designer. Companies, particularly small ones, are never the same after something like this happens. That’s the unfortunate truth. Can they survive, and even thrive? Sure…but it’s going to be tough.
Frank was my friend, and I’m going to miss him. I already miss him. I’m very grateful for the time I had with him, and am proud of our friendship.
I’m a Christian, and believe that Heaven exists. I sure hope it does. I have to have faith that it does. And, I have to believe that Frank’s in it, and that he’s ok. May God bless his family, and his company, both of which he loved. May God bless his soul, and accept his soul into His Kingdom, in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Oh, and may God also help the authorities find the other driver involved, who reportedly fled the scene of the accident. That person needs to be held accountable, especially if they caused Frank’s death.
POF-USA Revolution DI Direct Gas Impingement (DGI) Lightweight 7.62x51mm NATO/.308 Win. Tactical AR Carbine with E2 Chamber and Ambi Controls + Taran Tactical Innovations TTI PMAG Extension AR-10! (Videos!)
Patriot Ordnance Factory POF-USA Dictator Regulating Gas Block with Straight Gas Tube, and Archangel Ambi (Ambidextrous) Charging Handle(s) for AR-15 and AR-10/SR25 Tactical Rifle/Carbine/SBR’s at 2015 NRA Show
Patriot Ordnance Factory POF P308 and P415 (also written P-308 and P-415) Gen-4 Tactical Gas Piston AR Rifle/Carbine/SBR’s with New E2 Extraction (E-Squared Extraction) Chamber that Floats the Fired Case Right Out of the Gun (Video!)