Frances DuPre Fitzhugh
Frances DuPre Fitzhugh, 91, cherished wife, mother, grandmother and great grandmother passed peacefully, October 17, 2023.
She was born April 2, 1932 in Memphis, Tennessee to Clotilda Belle Mitchener and John Anderson DuPre. She was the eldest of two children. All have preceded her in death, as well as William Marsh Fitzhugh (Bill), her beloved husband of 50 years.
Frances lived her early years in Memphis, then attended the University of Mississippi and pledged Kappa Kappa Gamma. As a young adult Frances worked for her father’s company, John A. DuPre & Co., a cotton brokerage firm and a member of the Memphis Cotton Exchange. Though she ended up spending the majority of her life in Southern California, she remained a consummate “Southern Belle.”
Frances met Bill (affectionately known as “Pete”) on a blind date when he was stationed with the U.S. Air Force in Tennessee. The couple married in Memphis, November 30,1957. Frances was by Pete’s side as he completed his law studies at Stanford and Vanderbilt Universities. It was in Nashville that their first daughter Marion was born. Frances and Pete then moved back to Memphis where the births of Elizabeth, Lee and William completed their young family. They were blessed to have Frances’ parents and extended family nearby. The Fitzhughs lived in Memphis for a full eight years as Pete practiced law, before moving to San Marino, in 1968.
Once in California, Frances was dedicated to establishing new roots for her family. She raised her children in San Marino and made wonderful lifelong friends. She loved visiting Pebble Beach where Pete’s parents lived and enjoyed Carmel, Monterey’s Fisherman’s Wharf and bonfires on the beach. Frances embraced the Fitzhugh family legacy and carried the torch for the next generation. As a devoted daughter, she visited Memphis regularly and brought her Southern traditions back to the West Coast. Frances was a gifted cook and well known for her hospitality and hosting holiday dinners for her ever expanding family. She was famous for ringing in each New Year’s Day with her lucky black-eyed peas, cheese grits and greens.
In the timespan of 55 years, Frances was active in the San Marino PTA, Junior League of Pasadena, San Marino League, Pasadena Town Club and the KQ Chapter of PEO. One of Frances’ favorite positions was as a docent at the Huntington Library and Gardens leading tours for school children. She loved little children and had such a special way with them. She was a great neighbor and friend, always welcoming others into her lovely home.
Frances will be remembered for her wide variety of hobbies that gave her such pleasure. She was an avid gardener, loved her two dogs, and was interested in genealogy. From needlepoint, to tending her flowers, to her passion for blue and white, Frances was always engaged in something creative. She loved traveling, art, music, and theater but above all her greatest love was being “Nana” to her grandchildren.
Frances is survived by four children: Marion (Greg) Maxwell, Elizabeth (Gary) Guthrie, Lee (Sean) O’Brien and William (Monica) Fitzhugh; and by nine treasured grandchildren, Sarah, Julie, Allison, Kate, Will, Megan, Grace, Henry, Katrina; and her great-granddaughter Isabella. She will be deeply missed.
A memorial service will be held at Church of Our Savior (535 W Roses Rd, San Gabriel) on Wednesday November 15, 2023, at 2:30 p.m. In lieu of flowers, please donate to the Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens: https://huntington.org/donate.
- Date & Time: November 15, 2023 (2:30 PM)
- Venue: Church Of Our Savior
- Location: 535 W. Roses Road San Gabriel, CA 91775 - (Get Directions)
Huntington Library, Art Museum & Botanical Gardens
- Website: https://huntington.org/donate