October 19, 1921 – August 23, 2013
Frances S. Burd passed away peacefully on August 23 in Yakima, Washington, with her three daughters by her side. She was born Frances Jeanne Stickles on October 19, 1921, and lived in Southern California during her childhood and early adult years. After marrying Sherman K. Burd, she moved to the Pacific NW where she graduated from the University of Washington. She and Sherm spent nearly all of their 72 years of married life in the house they purchased in Bellevue in 1948. Sherm preceded her in death last December. Her sharp memory of people, events and connections was her strong suit making this big world a little smaller. Frances had a gift for nurturing things and watching them grow. She accomplished this with her beautiful yard, her garden, and especially her girls Janice Kay (Jon), Nancy Rae (Geoff) and Stephanie Jeanne (Steve). Besides her daughters she is survived by her loving grandsons Andrew Conrad (Melissa), Benjamin Conrad (Melissa), Ian Mallahan, Peter Weise (Jessica), and Joel Weise.
A memorial service will be held on Saturday, September 14, at 11:00 am at the Lodge at Beaver Lake 25101 SE 24th St, Sammamish, WA.
Frances and Sherm dedicated themselves to maintaining and improving their south Bellevue neighborhood so that it would remain the family-friendly place their girls enjoyed when they were growing up. In lieu of flowers the family asks that contributions be made to: Bellecrest Neighborhood Association Attn: Erin Powell 1015 106th Ave SE Bellevue, WA 98004 A community in which Frances lived and loved and called home for 65 years.
- Frances Burd Memorial Saturday, September 14, 2013
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October 27, 2013
October 27, 2013
September 18, 2013
P's & Q's
We all have milestones in our life when we can identify a “growing-up” moment; those events that we can look back on and say changed our behavior and our way of thinking.
As a child, I always heard the expression, “remember your P's and Q's.” Whenever I went into a birthday party, Mom would call out,”remember your P's and Q's!”
The problem was that I had no idea what p's and q's meant. I would just call back “I will” and skip off to the party. When I skipped back to the car, Mom would always ask if I had remembered my p's and q's and I would shake my head affirmatively or mumble uh uh.
Many times I would avoid the hosting mom because I did not really know what I was supposed to be saying. Then the day came when Mom stayed and helped at one of the parties. I knew she would end with her routine question and I was certain that I would get caught in a lie. I hovered around the host mom hoping that my mom would think that I was busy remembering my p's and q's. Finally, seeing Mom approaching, I tugged on the hostess and blurted almost as a question, “I'm supposed to remember my p's and q's?!”The mom looked down at me and said, “why your welcome! Thank you for coming!” When Mom and the hostess were saying their goodbyes, Mom looked down at me and asked me again the P& Q question and the hostess interjected something like, “why yes, she did. She was very polite.
Knowing that Mom was always going to ask me or the hosting parents the same question if I had spoken with them , I continued to go up to them and say “I'm remembering my P's & Q's”. I knew that I would never be allowed to sneak out to the car and avoid the head of the household. I would have to speak to them in a polite and formal manner, even if I delayed it until the last minute. But knowing that it would be the first question out of Mom's mouth forced me to get it over with.
But here is where the growing up moment occurred. One day, while a mother was speaking with my mom I listened to her tell mom how much she appreciated my thank you. No one at the party, including any parents had shown their appreciation for the invitation.
First of all, I finally realized that saying p's and q's meant saying thank you! Yeah! Over time, I learned to actually say “thank you for inviting me”.
But secondly, I saw that it put me in good graces with adults. I was suddenly thought of as more mature than others my age simply by saying thank you.
And over time I said thank you even when I really didn't mean it. Mom taught me that it really didn't matter if I had a good time or not or if I didn't win any prizes, that I still needed to say thank you. And now, as an adult, I know that it is not a matter of how I feel but how I can build others up with two simple words.
Another task that revolved around birthday parties was the dreaded task of writing thank you cards. Mom never failed to produce a list of names with corresponding gifts right after the party was over. I would hear the irritating question, did you write your thank yous? I dreaded this task and thought it was so unfair that my birthday and Christmas were so close together. But as an adult I can see the lessons that this task taught me: that relatives like childlike scrawled cards and put them on their frigs, that I learned to address envelopes and use stamps, that I got to practice cursive and put hearts as dots on I's, and if I used a bigger font or smaller cards I wouldn't have to write as much!
I once played a game with my husband's family where they all had to vote on the characteristic that best described me. Out of the whole list they unanimously voted “Thankful.” This surprised me at first until I reviewed my upbringing. I was raised by a mother that believed in the importance of expressing thankfulness and letting others know how much they are appreciated.
Very few of you here today have not received a written note from my Mom. Just look around this room and imagine how many notes she has written expressing her appreciation of you're your kindness, that someone had thought of her, had taken time out of their day to do something that she appreciated, or remembering their significant day.
And in typical Frances style, she would always remember something from a past conversation or event, often including a cutout magazine or newspaper article or brochure amazing us that she could even remember our mentioning anything about the subject.
Over there (point or indicate where) you will see moms card commode. It has always been packed with stationary and cards. I open it and think of all the cards and letters that she has written. These boxes are a piece of her history: perhaps a gift from one of you, bird and flowers on every box reflecting her love of gardening and chick a dees.
The traditional letter writing that my mom so enjoyed may become a thing of the past but I can't allow myself to believe that telling someone how thankful you are will become obsolete! One of moms favorite cards this past year was from her exercise friends on Mercer Island filled with signatures and saying that they were sending a big hug her way.
Take a little of my moms thankfulness with you today. As you leave, feel free to take a card, or even a handful of cards, and take time to write someone. Send them a big hug, recognize an event or just keep in touch but always remember your P's and Q's.
September 15, 2013
I met Fran in later life-about 16 years ago when we moved here from Houston. We met in refresher bridge classes at the senior center which then formed into a two table group that played weekly. Her sharp mind was apparent in her bridge moves and her kindness and consideration of others were always apparent. Our friendship blossomed into home visits and shared October birthdays at local restaurants followed by jaunts to local interests. She "adopted" me as a newcomer, taking me on the local Lake Washington cruise & supplying me with many local travel brochures, history, readings & lore. Our friendship developed & we grew closer. She was a born gentle-lady, exceptionally considerate, thoughtful & wise. She never made an unkind comment or action. Following the auto accident things deteriorated & her physical condition worsened, so her 3 lovely daughters made the oh-so-wise move of bringing her closer under their loving care. My last phone message from her ended with her saying, "Love you much". We always knew that love was mutual and precious to us. I miss her terribly. Love to Nancy, Ian and all of her handsome family.
September 14, 2013
Dear Jan, Nan and Stephanie, I was very sad to hear about your mom passing away late in August. So many of my memories of growing up in Evergreen Village include your mom and dad and you. I always knew that your parents were strong, kind, reliable and honest people - even when I was only 8 years old. My parents, Luke and Arlo, enjoyed their friendship so much. Your parents graciously let us build our many tents in the backyard and play tetherball in the front yard. Picking cherries from the tree in the back was a big treat. Your mom's apple fritters were and still are at the top of my list of most favorite breakfast treats. Fran kept me in the loop over the years of the changes in our old neighborhood and I always enjoyed our phone calls when we would catch up on the news. I was amazed that she would always remember and ask about our four sons. Fran and Sherm have left a loving legacy to their family and friends. How proud you must be of your parents and I'm sad for how much I know you will miss them.
Love Always, Pat Dailey Vigeland
September 12, 2013
I am sorry that both of your parents are gone. Both of your parents were really wonderful people. It has been long time since the last time I ran into them walking in the neighborhood. However, I think of you all everyday that I walk by your house. I know that you will miss them.
Jim & Barb Kenney
September 8, 2013
Our hearts go out to you all. Your parents were wonderful people who modeled how to be good citizens, with a broad view of the issues, not just how things effected them. We very much enjoyed them both.
Our prayers are with you all.
September 6, 2013
For over fifty years we have known Frances and Sherm but only once a year--at the Reid Carol Sings. We and Velma and Cy Bosworth (parents) have come to know Frances as an open, welcoming friend who never forgot our names, our children and family activities, and was eager to learn the latest. We have treasured this deep friendship with both of them, will ever keep that in our hearts. May Frances rest in Peace.
Shirley and Les Kirkendorfer
Frank & Dale Burns
September 5, 2013
Fran was a special person. I was so grateful she was there for Crystal, Rob and their children. It made me feel better about their being so far away. She truly was their Mom/Grandma. I had the honor of visiting with her on my visits. She will be missed very much. (Crystal's Mom and Dad)
September 4, 2013
Since 1978, Alan and I have had the privilege of knowing Fran and Sherm. Then our son Charlton came along in 1984, and he always enjoyed so much having visits at "the Burds'" home. It was also a great place for Trick or Treating! When we paid that last visit about a year ago, Charlton had a good talk with Sherm about medical matters as Charlton was going into his last year of medical school, and we chatted with Fran. What wonderful memories of a wonderful couple. Mary, Alan and Charlton Smith
September 3, 2013
Fran and Sherm were like family to my sister and her family when they moved to Bellevue, so far from their hometowns and families in northern NY many years ago. I will be forever grateful to them both for being such warm, loving people and stand-in mom, Dad and Grandparents for my loved ones. Beautiful people. A beautiful legacy.
September 3, 2013
Her door was always open.
Her smile, the first to greet us.
She would leave warm jars of applesauce on our milk box when the apples ripened in her yard.
Cards and flowers in time for May Day -I had never thought of celebrating May Day before I met her.
A knock on the door because I might need a hug the morning of 9/11...because "everyone probably needs a hug today."
There are so many things big and small that she gave to us. Her love and friendship a daily blessing in our lives.
I am happy she is free and so sad to be without her.
Grateful to have had time with her. Grateful to know you Janice, Stephanie and Nancy.
Knowing how deeply she imprinted on my heart, I cannot imagine your loss.
You are each wonderful and unique and reflect your Mom's beauty in so many ways.
Your Mom and Dad made a positive difference in this world and so will you.
Carolyn Reid & Gary Saaris
September 3, 2013
When Frances married our mother's brother Sherm, she soon became our favorite aunt, and they became designated to care for Barbara, Ken, and me if our parents died. Luckily, we were able to enjoy them and still have our parents as we grew up. Extended family gatherings with the three Henry/Jenny Burd children and grandchildren kept all of us close.
Aunt Frances welcomed Gary to the family with open arms. When Mother died in 1986, Frances did become a second mother, and grandmother for son Reid. She always remembered birthdays and other special days for our family. As the Burd family and we lived in Bellevue, we were able to carpool to extended family events, share annual carol singing, at Barb's or our house, and enjoy the impromptu meals she would always produce for a visit. The SKB home was lovingly and comfortably decorated to welcome every season and guests.
Mother and Frances truly loved each other. Frances was a warm, caring person, whose personality was more like Grandmother Burd's than any of Grandmother's biological children. She had a talent for focusing on other people (which allowed her to generally keep her own privacy). Frances always remembered anyone she met or heard of through us, and showed genuine interest in them. We sometimes thought she remembered more about them than we did! She shared plants from her garden with us, which I maintain in her memory. I reciprocated with gift plants for her garden, in which she and Sherm grew fruit and vegetables as well as ornamentals. We enjoyed some of their apple bounty, reminiscent of the apples of the Burd orchard when we were growing up. She and Grandmother inspired my love of birds.
As Sherm's and Frances' health diminished, our family was glad to be able to help them in small ways, but we will always owe them for their example and the love they shared with us. We are blessed by a loving relationship with our Burd cousins, who continue to live by their family values with integrity. Steph,, Nan, and Janny demonstrated tremendous commitment and caring as their parents needed them.
Frances will always be our second mother, and we will miss her sharing, hugs, warmth, and calm wisdom.
September 2, 2013
Thank you, Mom --
For being my oldest, dearest friend.
For your quiet grace,
For your sense of beauty,
For never whining,
For loving Dad and caring for him every day,
For loving your daughters as individuals
For having our backs,
For loving your grandsons and great grandchildren with all your heart,
For your love of birds, and for your understanding that, just like birds, your daughters, too, must fly.
For keeping your rules simple -- no bedtime, no curfews, just study and get good grades,
For making simple pleasures festive
For teaching us to survive and thrive as women --
Get a college education, be able to support ourselves, always have a dime in your shoe for a phone call.
For your small gestures --
A creatively packed lunchbox, a surprise display of flowers on the table for each season, a note to say "I care".
To understand seasons and their beauty
A favorite fall day with leaves to rake; a well-stacked pile of firewood; a warm fire; a snowfall outside the window; the spring bloom folding into the summer garden's bounty.
The gentle routine of rising, preparing coffee, the second cup, the day's unfolding, the table set for each meal, moderation in all things, another log on the fire, bedtime . . .
For my precious mother who "got" me -- from a daughter who "got" you, I will miss you every day of my life.
Liz (Williams) O'Connell
August 31, 2013
Fran was such a dear friend of the Williams family....we will miss her terribly but we have such wonderful and fond memories of growing up with her and Sherm ..living next door. After Dad passed, Fran and Sherm were always there for Mom....no matter where or when Mom was in need..
Steph, Jan and Nan...my very deepest sympathy. I will never forget your Mom....she was so very special to me.
Patricia (Conrad) Lewis
August 31, 2013
I'll keep so many extended lovely memories of times I shared with Fran and Sherm in Belleview - their 50th Wedding Anniversary, Sherm's 90th Birthday, and their hospitality in greeting us on our way to Vancouver all those years ago when Janice and Jon were on Sabbatical at UBC-Vancouver. They were a gentle, caring couple whose love touched so many for the better. Sending my love and condolences. Patty
August 31, 2013
Fran was a special person to me, as she was to so many -- welcoming and warm -- from my college days (as Jan's Whitman roommate), Thanksgiving dinners, Long Beach visits. I'll miss those (never-failing) Burd Christmas cards! My thoughts go out to the family. Lots of love, Dee
August 30, 2013
Because of my Mom
I will send hand written thank you's
I will always worry about and support my children
I will love gardens and visit them wherever I go
I will love my daughters-in-law
I will be fascinated by coincidences, ‘small world' stories and experiences
I will be interested in the passions of others
I will try hard to let go of all of my stuff
I will value my friendships
I will be mentally and physically active
I will maintain a peaceful home that my kids will want to come home to
I will keep loved ones in my memory
I will value my family heritage and honor my parents and ancestors
I will go to Shanghai Café and Ivars in her memory
I will value my upbringing, love my old neighborhood and miss Bellevue
I will love rooms with views
I will look for chick-a-dees in my yard
I will smell geraniums, tomatoes and cabbage in the hot summer sun and think of California
I will savor the pop of that first cherry tomato from my garden
I will be grateful for the time that I had with her in sickness and health
I will miss my Dad
I will love my sisters and call myself blessed to be one of her daughters
I will strive to continue the family legacy of long lasting marriages
And yes, Mom, I will mind my P's and Q's.
August 29, 2013
Nan, Jan and Steph --
It has taken me a while to organize my thoughts upon hearing of your Mom's passing. On one hand, she represented the last of that generation of Doc and Jenny's offspring. That hit me particularly hard because it pointed out how fleeting and fragile our remaining time here may be.
On the other hand, it gave me an opportunity to reflect on all that that generation did for you girls and the Burd cousins. Your Mom played a large role in giving us solid foundations and proper guidance. The fact that we are all different attests to the work our parents did on our behalf. They worked as a cohesive team through good times and bad to prepare us for whatever direction our individual lives took us. Your Mom was an important member of that team and I will always remember her contributions.