Frances Roena Sturgill Chaves, 91, died Feb. 24, 2007, at Deaconess Hospital in Oklahoma City of complications brought on by pneumonia.
Visitations will be until 7 o’clock tonight at Gray’s West & Co. Pioneer Chapel, 1500 Dewey Ave.
The rosary will be said at 7 p.m. Friday at Gray’s West & Co. There will be reception afterward at the Best Western Sunridge Inn, 1 Sunridge Lane.
Her graveside service will be at 10 a.m. Saturday at Mount Hope Cemetery.
Born on Jan. 15, 1916, at Baker City, she was the third child of Cecil R. and Jessie Osborn Sturgill. She was a 1935 Baker High School graduate.
She married Wilfred “Willy” Chaves Oct. 28, 1940, at New Plymouth, Idaho. They started their married life at Ontario. Other stops included Whitehall, Mont., and Arlington, before they returned to Baker City to raise their two children, Sandra Kay (Vigil) and Joseph Cecil Chaves.
Fran was a former member of the St. Francis de Sales Altar Society and the St. Francis Academy Mother’s Club. Willy’s work subsequently took the family to Lewistown, Mont., in 1959 and then on to Kansas City, Mo., in 1965 where she and Willy lived until his retirement in 1972.
They moved to Midwest City, Okla., in 1973 to be close to their daughter and their grandchildren, Jeffrey and Janni Vigil.
Fran volunteered for the American Lung Association for many years and was an active member of the Deaconess Better Breathers Club, which was founded by her daughter.
Each year she traveled with BBC to the Oklahoma Christian Camp near Guthrie, Okla., for two-day camp outs called Camp Spirit. She enjoyed time spent in the wilderness and formed many friendships with the other members.
While they were still able to travel, Fran and Willy took annual trips to visit their son, Joe, in the San Francisco Bay area where he lived and worked. They liked to venture into the city on sightseeing excursions and for dining out.
They liked taking trips up and down the California coast, and to the Napa Valley, Reno, and Lake Tahoe. They also visited Hawaii and Mexico.
Fran was a people person and constantly put the health and welfare of her family and others first. She loved the holidays and decorating for them and parties of any kind. Her candy, dessert, and snack-making abilities were legendary among family and friends. The family favorites were her homemade caramels and her chocolate sundae pie. She loved reading romance novels and attending women’s prayer dinner events at their church.
In February of 2006, Fran and Willy moved into St. Ann Nursing Home at Oklahoma City. Fran was voted Resident of the Month in July. She was an esteemed member of the Red Hat Society and stayed active playing card games and dominoes with her friends and family. She looked forward to each opportunity to venture out for a special coffee treat and dessert at Starbucks.
She adored pets and relished visits from her “granddogs,” as she called them. Their antics always brought smiles to her face.
Survivors include her loving husband of 66 years; her two children; two grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren, Emily and Abby Vigil; and several nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her parents; her two sisters, Cecille and Lettie; and her brother, Kenneth.
Memorial contributions may be made to the American Lung Association, the American Heart Association, Catholic Charities, or to the charity of one’s choice in the name of Frances Roena Chaves through Gray’s West & Co., 1500 Dewey Ave., Baker City, OR 97814.
Used with permission from: Baker City Herald, Baker City, Oregon, March 9, 2007
Transcribed by: Belva Ticknor