Frances R. Harkey
July 25, 1937 – March 13, 2021
Frances Harkey, a native Charlottean and longtime west side advocate, passed away on March 13, 2021. She spent many years leading grassroots efforts to improve Charlotte’s West Side. Frances began her career at Jefferson Pilot Communications in 1962, known as home of WBTV and radio stations WBT/WLNK. She retired as General Services Supervisor for those stations in 2002. Her civic activities and church were her passion and mission. In 1998 Frances Harkey, Judge Fulton, Neighboring Concepts partners and other stakeholders from the city began writing the West Morehead Corridor Study for the Charlotte Mecklenburg Planning Commission. The group met for over a year to develop that plan. With its close proximity to uptown, the area has since shown steady business improvements and residential growth. In 1999 she was awarded the Sam Walton Business Leader Award sponsored by WalMart Foundation. Harkey was chosen to be the award recipient by the Charlotte Chamber, which received a grant in the honoree’s name. She also served on various boards over the years: Wilkinson Corridor Business Association 1999 and Chair 2000; Wilkinson Boulevard Residents’ Association Chair since 1986; Chair of the Chamber’s Airport Area Council 1997-98 and Board Member of the Charlotte Mecklenburg Development Corporation. Frances was a talented soprano and enjoyed participating in choirs. Music came natural to her, and she encouraged everyone to join in saying “we all have a voice”. Later in life she was part of a group called the “Ole Gang” that met quarterly. Her loving spirit was infectious and known for her calming personality as a great listener. If ever you needed someone to talk with, she was the gal. Frances Harkey was preceded in death by her husband, Willie “Joe” Harkey, and her son, David “Mark” Harkey. She is survived by four special ladies she claimed as family: Terry Mace, Janie Kaufman, Kayla Tackett and Debbie Thomas. We were grateful for her care in her final days at Olde Knox Commons Full Care Center in Huntersville, and especially for her compassionate nurse, Ashlee. As you walk through the atrium of Charlotte Douglas International Airport, take a moment to notice the welcoming line of white rocking chairs for weary travelers. That was her idea, and you will be witnessing just one symbol of a life well lived.
A Celebration of Life service is planned for May 17, 2021, Monday at 11 a.m. at Calvary Baptist Church, 2727 Mt. Holly-Huntersville Road, Charlotte NC 28214. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Calvary Baptist Church Benevolence Fund.
A Celebration of Life
Calvary Baptist Church
Frances R. Harkey
March 22, 2021
She was the person who pushed me into my dreams. She would say what are waiting for Ginny don't waste time waiting for it go and get it. Sometimes you think of pivotal people in your life and she was like a godmother to me and and don't know and don't care why it was love and mutual respect. She had an understanding of the pain life could bring and that we must endure and be productive through it. It has stayed with me all this years and she was so proud of me, but her shoulders carried me through lost and gains. I will miss you Moma.
March 15, 2021
She had a high soprano voice in the choir at Calvary Baptist ...” O Holy Night” I Believe was one she sang ... what a blessing ! My sister and I grew up with Mark and kept the nursery for Adult choir practice ... those were special times in our lives ! We were all like Family ...the way church should be!! She will be missed! Candy P.🌹