Frances “Fran” Theresa Smith, age 66 of Willoughby, formerly of Eastlake, passed away April 28th, 2022 at University Hospitals in Cleveland. She was born September 11th, 1955 in Cleveland to the late Albert and Jeannette Smith.
She was a proud graduate of Eastlake North High School’s Class of 1973 and particularly proud of the marching band in which she played the flute. Her passion for music continued throughout her life and she had a wonderful voice to go along with her instrumental talent.
Fran started her career at St. Justin Martyr as a teacher’s aide and then worked with children and adults in special care at Deepwood and Metzenbaum schools. She also spent a good amount of time working as a lifeguard at local pools and she really loved to swim. Fran then went on to work in the patient care administrative support department at the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Cleveland for over 16 years and finally ended her career helping children with their reading and learning skills at Painesville City Schools. As you can see through her career choices, there was a common theme of helping people that were dealing with obstacles in their lives. This passion also spilled over into her love of foundations such as Camp Ho Mita Koda, a local camp that provides type 1 diabetic children the opportunity to enjoy the camp experience. She worked there in her younger years and later volunteered her time for the foundation. Fran also had a great love for different heritages which she expressed as a past member of the Irish American Club as well as a love of her German heritage which she always held near and dear. Her travels to Ireland and beyond were among her fondest memories. Perhaps her favorite pastime was just sitting with friends and sharing a pint while discussing whatever challenges the day brought. Many people throughout the years enjoyed her wit and intelligence in this setting. Lastly, Fran always had a special love of animals, particularly her beloved dog Juggsy, as well as the others that came before her.
Frances is survived by her sister Jacqueline Stankus, her nephews Albert Stankus, Joe (Stacey) Stankus and Chris (Melissa) Stankus; her grand nieces Hannah and Sedona Stankus and her grand nephew Julian Stankus. She was preceded in death by her parents, her sister, Mary Alexia Smith and her brother in law, Edward Stankus.
The family will receive friends from 4:00 – 7:00 PM Monday, May 9th, 2022 at The Abbey of Willoughby, 38011 Euclid Ave. (located on the grounds of McMahon Coyne Vitantonio Funeral Home). A memorial mass will be held at 10:30 AM Tuesday, May 10th at St. Mary Magdalene Church, 32114 Vine Street, Willowick (Please meet at the church). Burial to follow at All Souls Cemetery in Chardon Twp.
Donations can be made in Fran’s honor to: Camp Ho Mita Koda 14040 Auburn Road, Newbury OH 44065
Arrangements have been entrusted to Jeff Monreal of Jeff Monreal Funeral Home & Cremation Services.