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Brown-Wynne Funeral Home

200 Southeast Maynard Road, Cary, NC

OBITUARY

Howard Owen Francis

August 28, 1926October 25, 2019
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Howard Owen Francis, born in Bamboo, St. Ann, Jamaica in 1926 to Kathleen and George Francis, died in Cary, North Carolina, USA on October 25, 2019. He is survived by his son, Dr. Howard W. Francis and daughter, Lisa A. Battle; grandchildren, Natalie Francis, Benjamin Francis, Anthony Battle and Camille Battle; daughter-in-law, Sarah Francis and son-in-law, Michael Battle; and several cousins, nieces and nephews. He was pre-deceased by his wife of 56 years, Millicent E. Francis, 10 months ago.

Howard attended primary school in Claremont St. Ann and graduated from high school at St. Simon’s College in Kingston. He then entered the Jamaican civil service as a customs agent in Kingston and then Montego Bay. He then transferred to the Tax Service and held several posts in Montego Bay and the head office in Kingston. After marrying Millicent Royes he settled in Montego Bay where they raised their family until his retirement in 1980.

Howard has been a lifelong student and teacher of the piano, organ and choral music. After completing the music curriculum of Trinity College, he committed his life to musical ministry as an organist at Methodist churches in Kingston, Claremont and Montego Bay. He promoted classical and sacred music as an accompanist, choir director and teacher. As organist and choir director at St. John’s Methodist church in Montego Bay he oversaw the recording of an album of Charles Wesley’s hymns. Howard was also a member and past president of the Montego Bay Lodge.

Howard immigrated with the family to Southern California, the United States in 1980, eventually settling in Carson. He had a second career with the Orange County Fire Department, leading the payroll department in the City of Orange until his retirement in 1997. He continued to contribute to musical ministry most recently at Lynwood United Methodist Church in Los Angeles County where he leaves a loving community that includes family and friends. After his second retirement Howard and Millicent moved to Seattle to be close to their daughter Lisa and her family. Since 2009 they have lived in North Carolina in Pineville and most recently, Cary, his final resting place.

Howie was much loved by all who met him. His reputation as a principled, wise and fair individual made him a trusted confidant, mentor and friend to many. He lit up a room with his laughter, optimism and love for others. He brought sincere compassion and good reason to difficult problems. He was driven by the desire to serve others, and had a deep devotion to God. Howie will be deeply missed but he remains in our hearts and in his legacy that lives on through family and friends.

Viewing will take place on Friday evening, November 1, from 6 to 8 pm at Brown-Wynne Funeral Home, 200 SE Maynard Rd, Cary, NC 27511. Funeral services will take place on Saturday, November 2, at 11 am at St. Francis United Methodist Church, 2965 Kildaire Farm Rd, Cary, NC 27518. Viewing will be held at the church prior to the service from 10 to 10:45 am.

In lieu of flowers the family requests that contributions be made in Howard’s name to the Alzheimer’s Association.

Services

PREVIOUS SERVICES:

  • Viewing Friday, November 1, 2019
  • Viewing Saturday, November 2, 2019
  • Funeral Service Saturday, November 2, 2019

OTHER SERVICES:

  • Inurnment

Memories

Howard Owen Francis

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Pam Barrett

October 28, 2019

From The Lynwood Methodist Church Photo Album where Uncle Howie served as our Organist for over 10 years. Deepest condolences from the church. They were both loved very much.

FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY

Wedding 12/5/1962, Claremont, St. Ann, Jamaica

FROM THE FAMILY

At dinner on the SS France 1966

FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY

At Disneyland 1975

FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY

Wedding 12/5/1962, Claremont, St. Ann, Jamaica

FROM THE FAMILY

At dinner on the SS France 1966

FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY

At Disneyland 1975

FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY