Obituary: Frances Short (Feb. 5, 1928 – Oct. 6, 2013)

By Laura Wiens, The Triplicate October 11, 2013 02:21 pm

Frances Short
Frances Short
Fran Short passed away peacefully Oct. 6, 2013. Fran was born in Crescent City Feb. 5, 1928, where she lived her entire life with the exception of five years in Central Point, Ore. She attended local schools, graduating from the Del Norte High School class of 1946. After high school she attended Humboldt State College and eventually went to work for the Draft Board in Crescent City.

During that time she met John Short, whom she married in 1952 at her family home on Ninth Street in Crescent City. Shortly after they married, she and John purchased Farmers Insurance, which they owned and operated as John W. Short Insurance for nearly 30 years. Fran loved the business and, more importantly, loved the people that came through the door. The business was a “family affair” as Fran and John’s daughter grew up in the office.

Fran loved Crescent City and being involved in the community. During her working years she was a part of the Chamber of Commerce, Eastern Star, Soroptomist, the square dance group, the United Methodist Church and Salvation Army as well as being wholeheartedly involved in John’s and her daughter’s activities. Upon retirement in the mid-1980s Fran was honored to have the opportunity to serve on the Sutter Coast Hospital Board, her time spent as an Ombudsman and many years as a “Pink Lady” at Sutter Coast Hospital and Rogue Valley Medical Center. She enjoyed being a member of the Del Norte Historical Society as well as continuing hers and John’s nearly 40 years of volunteering for the Salvation Army. They could often be found ringing the bell with the kettle daily during the Christmas season. She so loved her church home, the United Methodist Church and all the wonderful people whose paths she crossed there, truly her church family. Fran’s greatest joy was being a grandma and in recent years could always be found in the bleachers cheering on the Warriors and her granddaughter at track meets and volleyball games.

Fran was preceded in death by her husband, John, whom she loved dearly; her parents, Roy and Lillian Ward; sisters Barbara Phipps and Virginia Ferguson.

She is survived by her daughter, Barbara Laney of Crescent City; granddaughter Morgan Laney attending college in Sacramento, as well as nieces, nephews and extended family and friends whom she loved so very much. Fran lived the last months of her life at Addie Meedom House, where she was surrounded by a loving, caring staff of terrific people who treated Fran and her family so kindly.

Fran touched many lives, and she too was touched by many. The many people in her life and in this community brought her such joy, and for that,  a sincere thank you to all of you. Fran was a kind and gracious lady who brought happiness to so many. We have been blessed to have had her in our lives, and her beautiful spirit is a gift that remains with us forever.

A Celebration of Life will be held Friday, Oct. 11, 2013, at 3 p.m. at the United Methodist Church, 664 H St, Crescent City.

Memorials in Fran’s honor can be made to The Salvation Army, 516 Second Street, Crescent City, CA 95531.

Please sign the family’s online guest book at

Arrangements are under the direction of Wier’s Mortuary Chapel.