Therese Jane Francke

Therese Jane Francke

September 28, 1932 - April 18, 2005

Therese Jane Francke

September 28, 1932 - April 18, 2005


Jane Francke 72, devoted wife, beloved mother, cherished grandmother and treasured friend passed away in Los Angles, CA on Monday April 18, 2005 after a two-year battle with cancer. Born in Franklin, New Jersey September 28, 1932 to Myrtle and Lou Kulsar, Jane graduated from Franklin High School in 1949; attended the New Jersey College for Women from where she graduated in 1953; followed by her marriage to Second Lieutenant Bill Francke in 1954. Three wonderful children, Brad, Dave and Mary Beth followed over the next eight years and became a focal point in Jane’s life. Embracing her role as the wife of a career military man, Jane immersed herself in many aspects of military life, including being recognized as Air Force Wife of the Year at Westover Air Force Base in 1974. Over the 27 years of Bill’s military career, Jane was actively involved at every base that they were assigned to, becoming a mentor and confidant to many military wives and their families during that time. She was also extremely active in the civilian community, so much so that a tree was planted in Jerusalem by the Hadassah, a Jewish Women’s group in Portsmouth, New Hampshire that Jane helped in many ways during Bill’s assignment as Base Commander at Pease Air Force Base. The Portsmouth Herald wrote about Jane, ‘Can you possibly comprehend the extent to which your time could be in constant demand by others, not only from every conceiveable corner of your base, but also from your immediate civilian community. Any group would find it difficult to equate a lady of Jane Francke’s personal dedication to any they have ever known in her position as wife of the Base Commander.’ After moving into 23 different homes and living in various parts of the country over a twenty-three year period, Jane and Bill moved to Redwood Tree Lane in Irvine, CA during the fall of 1976. Shortly thereafter, Jane began a twenty year career in the retail business, finishing her career at I. Magnin in Newport Beach as the manager of the St. John Knits department. More importantly, she continued her service activities by generously donating her time to charitable organizations such as Casa Teresa, a home for unwed expectant mothers and the Irvine Medical Center, where she was actively involved in the creative design and daily operation of their gift shop, being recognized by the hospital as one of their outstanding volunteers. Jane also served as Chairperson on the Architectural Board of their housing association in Irvine for many years, retiring from that role in 2004. Many treasured friendships developed over the years and Jane made sure each one of their friends and family was always kept abreast of all Francke family developments. She created ‘Jane’s Christmas Letter’, as everyone affectionately referred to it, which has become legendaryin the annals of holiday communications, filling hundreds of households annually with a recap of all the Francke family news for the past year. Jane and Bill shared many wonderful experiences over their fifty year marriage, highlighted by the births of their ten grandchildren, whom Jane deeply loved. A strong woman of faith, she exhibited a Christian spirit that was an inspiration to everyone who knew her. Jane was blessed with many talents, too numerous to mention, but will always be remembered as a caring, selfless person, with an unbelievable sense of style…a true woman of dignity.
She will be deeply missed by her husband Bill; their children Brad Francke, Dave Francke and Mary Beth Walsdorf; grandchildren Matthew Francke, Allison Francke, Michael Francke, Kevin Francke, Colleen Francke, Christopher Francke, Brian Francke, Joseph Walsdorf, Peter Walsdorf and Jane Walsdorf; Daughters-in-law Kelly Francke and Clare Francke; Son-in-law Jack Walsdorf; two surviving brothers, Lou Kulsar and Bill Kulsar and many other friends and family. ‘May your Strength give us Strength…May your Faith give us Faith…May your Hope give us Hope…May your Love bring us Love’

Jane Francke-Celebration of Life-Schedule:

Sun 4/24 6-9 pm Visitation and Vigil Vigil/Rosary 7-7:30:
O’Connor Laguna Hills Mortuary
25301 Alicia Parkway
Laguna Hills, California 92653
Toll Free: 877-872-2736

Monday 4/25 Funeral Mass 10:00:
ST. Elizabeth Ann Seton
9 Hillgate
Irvine, CA 92612-3265
Phone 949 854-1000
Fax 949 854-0079

Burial Service immediately following Mass approx 12:00:
Holy Sepulcher Cemetery
7845 Santiago Canyon Road
Orange, CA 92669
714 532-6551

Lunch Reception following Burial Service Approx 12:45:
Orange Hill Restaurant, 6410 E Chapman Ave Orange CA 92869 714 997-2910
Restaurant is located at top of hill up long driveway called Cliff Drive-coming  from Cemetery go left on to Santiago Canyon out of cemetery  then right on Newport Blvd then right on Chapman to restaurant.The major cross street before you get to restaurant driveway is Orange Park Road-restaurant driveway is on left side of Chapman it is real hard to see just after passing Orange Park Road and after passing the large hill.

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38 responses to Therese Jane Francke

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  1. jan stevens says:

    Dear Bill and family
    We remember fondly the Mawnan Smith visits that we shared with you and Jane. Mum was pleased to host the ‘Stevens’ gatherings reminising about The Harveys and our great grandparents. We all enjoyed Jane’s company.
    She will not be forgoten and our memories of her will stay with us.
    With Love
    Jan and Phyl Stevens

  2. Here are a few special memories I have with Grandma Jane..
    I remember when my mom and I flew out to California for my cousin Allison’s First Communion, and Grandma would always rub this “Coco Perfume” on me. I always felt so proud when wearing any of Grandma’s articles. I also remember how I adored her pins. How many she had! I always had a special love for the bumble bee pin, which I now take pride in owning, for Grandma knew just how much I loved it. I cherish the memory of when we’d be going to the beach for a few hours in Cape Cod, and Grandma & I would walk down together, but it always took ages, because Grandma had to look JUST right for the beach. I always remember knocking on her bedroom door exclaiming, “GRANDMA! COME ON!” And when she’d walk out, I’d remember thinking, “She gets herself all ready, and yet, she doesn’t even come in the water? Oyy vey!” This certainly goes to show that Grandma was a very classy lady. When Great Nanny, or Grandma’s mother, passed away, Grandma planned most of the funeral. She was so organized. I remember at the beach at Cape Cod, how she’d constantly be cracking jokes that we’d all be chuckling about for the remainder of the vacation. When I was very little, I’d get out of the bath tub, and Grandma would give me “Rubby Dubbies” and then wrap me up, and read me a story. My childhood days were spent hardly waiting for the next visit with Grandma. I’ve only been alive for 13 years.. but all of those years have been blessed with love from my dear grandmother, Jane. We have so many memories together, the whole Francke family..especially at the beach at Cape Cod with the Gorman, O’Leary, & Upchurch families, as well as their friends. My grandmother loved all of you so much. To Juanita & Cliff McCormick, not a day on vacation would pass before Grandma would tell me all of your wonderful memories together. She loved you both so much, so please, don’t hasten to hold on to those memories with a firm grasp. To Grandma’s friends & relatives in the UK, I’m so very happy to see that some of you have had the opportunity to sign this guestbook. My grandmother told me stories about the times she’s had in England, and how much she adored those visits. To all of her beloved Hospital Gift Shop Coworkers & clients, Grandma enjoyed being there for you. To Grandma’s neighbors, she really did love living near you. Almost every time I came to visit, we’d walk through Redwood Tree Lane, and she’d explain exactly who all of you were to me. To Grandpa Bill, I want you to know that Grandma never meant to leave you so soon. She loved you more than anything. Everyone tells my cousins and I that atleast one of us would come up in every conversation they had with Grandma, but I neglect to listen, because I know myself that Grandma was so proud of us. To all of my grandma Jane’s friends that she met on vacations or on any of the bases they moved to with my Grandpa’s work, she never forgot you guys. She always talked about all of you, and cared deeply about each and every one of you. Since all of you had a special place in Grandma’s heart, all I have to say is that it must’ve been pretty big. And that it was. Please never forget the memories you’ve had with my Grandma Jane. Words cannnot describe how much all of you meant to her. I know for a fact, that if you follow that pact…Jane Francke will never be forgotten.

    I love you Grandma! Please watch over & guide me through every obstacle I’m to come across.

    – Colleen Francke

  3. Rich Kulsar says:

    When somebody lives a life as fully as my Aunt Jane did, it makes it that much harder to imagine her not on this earth any longer. I don’t think she took anything for granted, and savored every moment she was given to live. I have great memories of time spent on family vacations in California, Jane always kept us running, looking for something fun to do. More recently, whenever I was in California to perform, Jane and Bill were always there to cheer and dance!!! Even if they danced the same, to whatever style of music was being played, it didn’t matter, because they were having FUN!!!!!! I thought sometimes, Jane could be a bit too much in others business. But in retrospect, I think she was just making sure we were staying on the right path!
    THANKS Jane, for truly sharing your life with us. I’m really going to miss you!
    LOVE, Rich K.

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