Memorial services Tuesday for Fran Flood
A memorial service is set for 3 p.m. Tuesday at the Beaver Creek Chapel, with Rev. Eugene Scott officiating. A second memorial on the Jersey Shore will be held in the spring.
“Fran faced her entire disease with remarkable courage, along with warmth and good humor,” said Dr. Wag Schorr, her primary physician in Vail. “That’s a rare combination in people who are facing their mortality. To me, this was a demonstration of Fran’s underlying spirit.”
Among her special gifts, friends said, was the ability to make everyone feel an important part of her life. She battled cancer without complaint and faced death in the same way she lived, with dignity and grace, they said. As her health failed, her thoughts and concerns turned to her friends and care givers. She stayed as independent as she could, even hooking up her own IV.
A strong lady, she was very determined not to allow the cancer to spoil her final days with her husband and friends,” said Phil Smiley, who met the Flood when his late wife, Jane, was receiving treatment at the Shaw Cancer Center.
“A positive, loving and caring person, Fran gave so much attention and love to Jane while she was going through the last days of her life,” Phil Smiley said. “I was so appreciative of that.”
Anne Snyder, a close friend, described Fran as one of those people who used her gifts to be able to talk to anybody and bring out their best qualities. Flood was a good listener, Snyder said, and as a teacher, she touched many, many lives.
A career educator in the state of New York, Flood worked with many challenging students, coordinating and administering a school/business partnership and the School-to-Career programs. As a mathematics and special-education teacher, she became the first administrator for Special Vocational Education for the Nassau Board of Cooperative Educational Services. She was director of the Long Island Regional Education Center and worked collaboratively with both community and four-year colleges.
She loved her Rocky Mountain lifestyle, and was thrilled to have conquered powder last ski season. She also enjoyed snowshoeing, hiking, biking and golf. Active in her community, she served on the board of directors of the Beaver Creek Homeowner’s Association and the Volunteer Guild of the Vilar Center for the Arts.
“Fran was one of the loveliest people with such a lust for life,” said Kris Sabel of the Vilar Center. “Although she struggled with cancer for a number of years, she was still always so upbeat, energetic and had an infectious love for life, which she passed on to those she came in contact with.”
As a backstage volunteer, Flood worked with costumes and props for the Vilar Center’s bigger shows. As both a patron and volunteer, Fran had an appreciation for what it takes to make it all work.
“We will all certainly miss Fran and the infectious energy she brought to the Vilar,” Sabel said.
Another close friend, Tommie Campbell, remembered Flood as kind, considerate, intelligent and a great organizer.
“She was one of the most wonderful women I’ve ever met or known,” Campbell said. “Fran appreciated real sincerity. It was never about her, but about others. She had great strength, coupled with a sweet, warm, loving attitude that kept her focused on the positive side of life, despite all the treatment she endured.”
Campbell, as well as Flood’s husband, Frank, were especially pleased with the professionalism and care given by the volunteers of Mountain Hospice.
“The Hospice was the most wonderful organization I’ve ever come across,”
Campbell said. “I knew nothing about it before, and didn’t understand what it was. When I saw them in action with Fran, they were gentle and supportive to both the patient and their families. I could feel their strength and
Frank Flood said his wife lived a life that would afford no regrets. Her one sadness, he added, was that she was going to miss out on the adventures ahead with children and grandchildren. Blessed with a great sense of humor, she once she would not reach the age at which she could receive a social security check, he said.
Born Jan. 11, 1941, in Morristown, N.J., Fran Flood spent her early years in Mountain Lakes and Seaside Park, N.J. She earned a bachelor’s degree from St. Elizabeth’s College in Caldwell, N.J., and obtained two master’s degrees from the State University of New York.
She is survived by: husband, Frank J. Flood of Beaver Creek; daughter Karen Freck and her husband, John Freck of Vienna, Va.; son Scott Piscitello and his wife Chandra Emory of Portland, Ore.; and grandsons Peter Green Freck and Henry Clay Freck of Vienna, Va.
Other survivors include: her brother and sister-in-law, Jack and Eileen Ketcherick of Mountain Lakes, N.J.; and brothers- and sisters-in law James and Sharon Flood of San Diego and Margaret and Robert Kurmis of Daytona Shores, Fla.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made through the Frances Flood Educational Foundation, c/o J. Hanna, 4002 the Fairways, Baiting Hollow, N.Y. 11933 or to Mountain Hospice, attn: Lynn Hoehn, P.O. Box 40,000, Vail, CO, 81658.