Charles H Francis

Born: Wed., Nov. 9, 1921
Died: Sun., May 26, 2019


Visitation

11:00 AM to 12:00 PM, Sat., Jun. 01, 2019
Location: Rhodes Funeral Directors


Funeral Service

12:00 PM Sat., Jun. 01, 2019
Location: Rhodes Funeral Directors


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"Chuck” began his life in Pittsburgh, PA over 97 years ago.  He lived there over 40 years before migrating to Clearwater, Florida, in 1973.  Growing up in Pittsburgh he was surrounded by a large and boisterous family.  His mother, Jennie Chadwick Francis, was the center of the family’s universe.  Older siblings were his brothers William and David (d. 1924), and sisters May, Eleanor, Hazel, Betty and Katherine who preceded him in death.  He is survived by his youngest brother, James Francis.   He and his brothers became master ceramic tile setters under the tutelage of their father, David.  Graduating from George Westinghouse High School in 1940, he was drafted into the U.S. Army in 1942 and served as a radio operator in various stations in the United States and the South Pacific theater.  After World War II he attended the University of Pittsburgh for a year.  He met his soul mate, Dorothy Panner, in 1947, and they married in 1948.  In 1949, their daughter Doreen was born.  They spent many happy years in the Penn Hills area of Pittsburgh, where Chuck was an avid fan of the Pittsburgh Steelers and enjoyed tinkering around on household projects.  Grandchildren Willian and Cynthia were added to the family.  Moving to Clearwater, they joined an exodus from Pittsburgh of many members of the Francis and Panner families.  Beginning a new career in maintenance for the Veterans Administration at Bay Pines Hospital in St. Petersburg, he enjoyed playing cards and telling stories with family and friends.  He attempted, fairly unsuccessfully, to learn the game of golf, and never ceased enjoying the game on TV.  Retirement for him and Dorothy brought contented, happy years until Dorothy’s death in 1996.  Beginning a new life as a single man, he learned new skills like doing dishes, laundry and balancing a checkbook.  He enjoyed the company of his many friends at the Safety Harbor VFW and American Legion.  He was very happy to be able to spend time with his daughter Doreen, and his son-in-law Roy Nelson, and  to greet his new great-grandchildren, James Cooper and Maitilda Cooper.  Chuck was known as a great storyteller, and regaled many with his tales of World War II and other events from his life.  He took the time to write poetry and put his imagination to use by writing short stories and a few novels.  Many of the female heroines seemed to resemble his wife, Dorothy.  Living independently almost until his death on May 26, 2019, he savored life, TV and, above all, football.  We all wish the Steelers had managed to win just one more Super Bowl for him.  RIP Dad, you are so missed.

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