Frances “Fran” Sweesy passed away 12/12/2019, 19 days before her 94th birthday. She was excited to finally join the love of her life, pre-deceased husband of 70 years, Bob Sweesy on his birthday. She leaves her son, Rob Sweesy, daughter Candy J. Lee, son-in-law Rocke Koreis, and grandsons Tim and Alan Sweesy. She is the last of her siblings, Mickey Connell, Alan Kehl and Maxine Hurst. She was born in Wapato to her parents Christ & Lydia Kehl where she later graduated from Wapato High School.
Fran was a red headed firecracker that energized all those around her. She was a passionate Zontian for over 50 years, leading many efforts to better serve the Yakima and international community. Fran had an intensity and desire to improve herself and all those around her.
Bob & Fran were always looking for reasons to have parties and socialize with friends. They loved going out dancing with friends and sharing martinis. She was a champion pie maker, turning her skills into a special party called the “Pie Night for Friends.” She would never miss her dirty dozen luncheons where 12 of her closest friends would share questionable jokes over lunch for more than a decade. Many of her friends also remembered the long 10 year run of the Sweesy Pig Parties.
Fran had a love of flowers, especially roses. She was known as the Yakima Rose Lady by her gardening friends. Her garden club was instrumental in restoring and expanding the Yakima Arboretum rose garden and she leaves her 500 plus roses to her daughter and son-in-law. She was a skilled stained glass artist, and many Yakima gardens display her customized stained glass stepping stones.
The Casey Family Program was an important institution in her life that she enjoyed decades as the office manager of Yakima office until her retirement. She especially enjoyed hosting the Casey foster kids graduation party at her home each year.
Everyone that knew her will miss her quick wit and supportive energy.
Please join us to celebrate her life and her birthday with brunch at the Yakima Arboretum on New Year’s Eve (Tuesday, December 31st) from 10 am to 12 pm.
Please make donations to Yakima Arboretum for the benefit of the Rose Garden, in lieu of sending flowers.