At 94 years of age, Freda Marie Francis passed from respiratory failure on Monday, Jan. 17, 2022, in Lewiston.
Daughter of Molly Fertig David and Henry David, Freda was born in Dodson, Mont., Nov. 2, 1927. During her childhood, she lived with her parents and 17 siblings in a tiny log cabin, now a historical site in downtown Ronan, Mont.
Freda met the love of her life, Charles Donald Francis, in Spokane, and they were married there April 3, 1948.
After his Navy service during World War II, Donald worked for the Dictaphone Corporation, selling a precursor technology to cassette tapes used at the time in office letter dictation. Freda and Don moved to a home on Riverview Drive in Clarkston. After buying a home in Terrace Heights in Yakima and living there for two years, Freda and Don negotiated a house trade transaction, swapping their older home in Yakima for a newly constructed home in Clarkston, and returned in 1969.
Freda spent her career as a case worker at the Clarkston Health and Welfare Department. She was a faithful Christian servant and very active in Our Savior’s Lutheran Church throughout her life, teaching, volunteering, and in her latter years (to the amusement of, at the very least, her children), known for responding to rhetorical questions (loudly) during the sermons. She volunteered in the Clarkston elementary schools and taught reading, frequently buying books for the children with her own money. Her husband, Donald, preceded her in death May 15, 1988. After successfully raising her own three children with boundless love and patience, Freda became a foster mother and changed the lives of several children who found an amazing source of stability, love and grace at the time in their lives they needed it the most.
Freda is survived by her siblings, Ruth Ann Gregg; Willy David and children; Dale Francis, of Clarkston; Jan (Tim) Holt, of Phoenix; and David Francis, of Seattle.
Freda was preceded in death by 15 of her siblings: Marie, Martha, Ester, Eva, Sue, Tootsie, Betty, Rosalia, Billy Mae, Letha, John, Henry, Jake, Edward and Benny.
There will be a celebration of life service for Freda followed by refreshments at 2 p.m. Saturday, June 11, at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church, 1115 13th St., Clarkston.
Merchant Funeral Home of Clarkston is in charge of arrangements.