Last Updated: 02/10/2015
Last Review: 02/10/2015
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The first time I met Francie I was working on what would be her side of the office on a project with Carla. This stranger walked up, was talking about needing to measure her bosses office and not being sure where to start. I grabbed the tape measure and a pad of paper she had and we started getting the measuring done. From that point on, if Francie had a project where she wasn't sure how/where to start she would come seek me out. I could always count on her cheerful smile. I miss you Francie but I know you are out of pain now. To her family, you lost a gem of a gal, I am so sorry for your loss.
~ Janice K Ayers - February 19, 2021
I have such fond memories of Francie from the Jardine days. She had such a kind, bright spirit. My day always got better when I could talk to her.
I hadn't seen Francie for 38 years when we ran into each other at the Wanamaker Elementary Fall Festival. I recognized her immediately. She hadn't changed a bit. Same bright smile and disarming personality.
We had a really nice talk. It was as if no time had passed.
And what a nice surprise to discover that Zach and my daughter Jessi were in the same class.
Francie had a great sense of humor. She knew how to tease without being mean and in jr. high that's a real art. She had a comic nickname for me which she greeted me with daily. With that, plus her smile, how could I have a bad day.
And apparently after our Wanamaker reuinion she shared that nickname with Zach who promptly shared it with Jessi.
One day I came home from work to...
"Hi Daddy. I mean..Dreamboat."
Followed by...."Really Daddy?"
We had a huge laugh over it.
But that moment, just like seeing all of the names on this guestbook, triggered so many other great memories from Jardine. I really enjoyed reading all the memories. So cool.
Zach and family, our hearts go out to you. Francie was a great girl, a great lady. I hope someday I'll see that smiling face again.
Mike, Jessi and Janet Kennedy
~ Mike Kennedy - February 18, 2021
I became acquainted with Francie in 7th grade at Jardine Jr. High. She was one of my circle of close friends for those three years. I was lucky enough to have her join me in the Virgin Islands for a couple of weeks at age 18. My Dad treated us to a Piña Colada (Francie's first one) and still would talk about it in a recent conversation. She owned a pair of really cute bell bottom jeans that I absolutely fell in love with and she gave them to me. Not sure if she ever remembered giving them me but to this day I will never forget her generosity.
Once our kids were old enough we started getting together with Linda and Kelley. We would meet in Topeka at Kelleys Mothers house for about 3 days during summers. The 4 of us would go see movies, watch hours of Sex and the City and Mad Men, get coffee at PT's and drive around reminiscing about our youth, driving by all sorts of our old haunts. We laughed till we couldn't laugh anymore. One of the last times we all got together we stood in a parking lot in SW Topeka in the dark and watched a storm come in, the wind blowing, lightning and thunder booming, laughing and feeling free being together. Kelley, Francie and I have continued to get together for lunch and a little shopping since that last summer get together...still as close as we were at Jardine.
She loved her kids and grandkids so very much and would share pictures and stories every time we would get together. I was fortunate to get to know Alex, Carly, Maddie and Zach in person and through stories. I love you kids!
Please keep in touch guys, I still want to know about weddings, babies and watch those grandkids grow up.
Francie always handled her cancer with grace and like it was no big deal. I knew otherwise, I knew it was hard but she never complained or wanted sympathy. I will miss her terribly but she will always be in my heart. Every time I hear The Beach Boys I will think of her.
~ Margie Greenlee - February 16, 2021
Francie was a sweet friend since Jardine Jr. high and throughout our lives. We worked together at two jobs and were roommates. Driving back and forth to Colorado I enjoyed stopping in Hays to see her (and you kids!) We shared a lot of our trials together along with hysterical stories and memories. When we lived together at Candletree Apartments in Topeka with Ruth Meinking, Kara Zeferjahn and Stacie Brennan we had Stacie’s dog, Lucy, with us. One time, while apparently having trouble walking the 20’ to the outside door to let Lucy out, we rigged up a basket and rope and lowered Lucy off our balcony to go to the bathroom. For some reason, Lucy was OK with this. We thought we were pretty smart, (if not lazy) and then the guys living downstairs came outside to figure out what the heck was going on as they watched a dog being lowered by basket by their patio door. We laughed so hard at their reaction that Francie fell on the floor! Francie was so cool, she knew all the lyrics to the songs we sang to the car radio, especially Carly Simon. She was always classy and sassy, a true friend and a fun co-conspirator in our mischief, but mostly, she was wise. She had a kind way of helping people through life’s disappointments while handling hers with such grace and quiet strength. She will be so missed.
To Carly, Maddie, Alex and Zach I send my most heartfelt condolences. You know how special your Mom was; wonderful Mother and Grandmother, one you could confide in and share your troubles with and one who always gave her full support with sage advice. It’s never easy to say goodbye to someone so well-loved. And as she taught us, it’s all about love. There’s nothing I can say to make it better, but I hope you can find some comfort in this quote:
“Love is the only thing that we can carry with us when we go, and it makes the end so easy.”
Louisa May Alcott
In my mind I see her wrapped snugly in a colorful patchwork quilt made of love and fond memories from each of us. She left you a love that death can’t steal and as your turmoil and tiredness subsides, may you feel the strength of her love emerge in new ways. Rest in peace dear friend, Godspeed.
~ Mary Purdy Gmuender - February 15, 2021
Dear Alex, Carly, Maddie, Zach and all her Francie's grandchildren,
So very sorry for your loss. I pray that God will come to you in miraculous ways and give you a peace that only He can give. May you be blessed with memories of her love and kindness.
~ Elizabeth Schmeidler - February 15, 2021
Francie and I were friends in Junior High. She was so much fun! Always enjoyed seeing her at the reunions and catching up. She was a beautiful person both inside and out. I know her passing will leave a huge hole in your family. So sorry for your loss.
~ Christie Shreve Mitchell - February 14, 2021
Today I can't begin to articulate the sadness that I feel. It's a surreal juxtaposition because I also feel joyous knowing that Francie is not sick anymore and is in a fantastic place. So many of us feel the loss with you…she was your mother, your grandmother and we all had a front row seat to her love for all of you.
Francie, Kelley, Nancy, Margie and I were partners in crime since Jardine days (the best of times) counting the minutes until the next party at the Lentz or Emerson Shangri-la.
She was such a beautiful, kind person and a great friend - always ready to listen and have a laugh, accepting of who you are. I felt I could confide in her and not be judged, but rely on her sound judgment.
She will continue to live on through all of us as well as the countless lives she touched.
~ Linda (Staab) Hodges - February 13, 2021
First, to Francie’s children and grandchildren, I am so sorry for the loss of your beautiful Mom and Grandma. I never had the pleasure of meeting you; I only know how Francie spoke of all of you. You were her life and her loves. And you were God’s blessings to her. Francie was a lifelong friend of mine from high school and throughout all the years since. Unfortunately, we lost contact at different times of our lives but I was lucky enough to call her my friend. And I am so thankful that we picked up where we left off several years ago.
My 1st apartment after high school was with Ruth M, Purdy and Stacie Brennan. And Francie would stay there with us when summer break came or whenever she’d like. We were happy, young & carefree then. Francie carried that same spirit all through her life. She was such a caring and loving friend. I love her and will miss her. Kelley, my heart and prayers go out to you. And to Purdy, thank you. I love you; my thoughts and prayers are always with you. Rest In Peace Francie. You will be missed.
~ Kara Oxley (Zeferjahn) - February 13, 2021
“Frances”, “The Francinator”,” Francelicious”, “Francie Pants”,” Granny Franny”
She was so special to so many people that she tended to accumulate endearing nicknames. I called her a best friend throughout our lives. Alex, Carly, Maddie, and Zach, I will miss your “Mom” so terribly along with so many others. I’m thinking of you.
Kelley Emerson Kreutzer
~ Kelley Kreutzer - February 12, 2021
I knew Francie in junior high at Jardine. She went on to West and I went to High. Most recently we worked together on our Jardine class reunion. Your mom was the one that made that reunion happen and it was so nice to see her again. My hearts go out to all of you because I lost my mom when I was about your ages. I know you will miss her every day but just remember how much she loved you and those grand babies and all the good times you shared with her. Prayers for all of your family.
~ Lynn Clothier - February 12, 2021
Francie was very special to our family. She was my mom's best friend in the world ever since high-school. From what I can tell from their stories, she was the good one in the group (no offense Margie). Whenever she was around, the house was full of laughter. She would hang out with my grandma Maxine and help entertain and take care of her, which was a full time job. I thought my mom was going to pee her pants when Margie and Francie went through Maxine's cupboards and pulled out all the expired cans of date nut bread and stacked them on the counter. For legal reasons, I can only share one of their many stories here. I was hanging out with Francie and her mom and my grandma Max and my mom Kelley and Francie's mom told me that she had lost all of the ridges on her teeth because she chewed too much ice. Every time I saw Francie after that I would get a cup of ice and chew it and then go "Ow! My ridges!" Only Francie thought it was funny. I still do it to this day, but now there will be no one to laugh. Even when she was surely suffering, it was hard to tell because she never complained and worried only about the people around her. She leaves behind a legacy of friendship, memories, amazing kids and grandkids, and a life well lived.
We are all going to miss you.
~ Max Kreutzer - February 12, 2021
Francie never saw anyone differently. She was everyone’s friend. That is a rare trait. And we know what a strong woman she was and we can all gain strength from her now.
~ Mike Swenson - February 12, 2021
Francie was a joy to have as a friend. I have so many memories from high school and college of fun, support and getting through challenging times together. She was a bright star to me and many others. May your journey be amazing! Ruth Meinking
~ Ruth Meinking - February 12, 2021
Francie was full of life & always excited to share about her kids & grandchildren. She & I would enjoy chatting during lunch breaks when we both worked downtown. She brought joy to the people around her & will be missed.
~ Susan Ismert Streit - February 12, 2021
I feel like I am still in denial of Francie’s passing. Although, we didn’t know each other that many years, we had mutual childhood friends and I felt like I knew Francie all my life. Francie will be so missed. I hope for the best eternal peace possible for a very dear person.
~ Sherry Clayton - February 10, 2021
Dear Zach and family, we can’t begin to imagine what all of you are going through since the passing of Francie.
Please accept our deepest sympathies as you go through this season of heartache.
Do know that we’re here for you.
Soraya, Alex, Diego, Javier, and Gabriela Guerrero
~ Soraya Guerrero - February 10, 2021
RIP Dear Francie,
I will miss your gentle soul, dry sense of humor, as well as, our pre-COVID-19 dinners in Topeka. I miss the good old days when we were young As ‘JARDINE-ites’ we thought we were invincible... and carefree. Oh the great parties we had ...just living, laughing and loving . Fun times at Jardine Jr High.
Francie once again you are carefree and invincible. RIP dear friend.
~ Nancy Lentz Campbell - February 10, 2021
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