February 21, 2023
It is with great sadness that we announce the unexpected passing of our wife, mother, and grandmother, Frances Marie Lafreniere (Farkas) nee Hrytzak on February 21, 2023. She was blessed with 79 fulfilled years.
Frances, the eldest child of Eugene and Susanna Hrytzak was born in Victoria, BC July 13, 1943. She had two younger siblings, Christine and David. She spent most of her life growing up in Taghum, BC on the Hrytzak’s family farm (today, part of this farm is known as the home of Georama’s Nursery). Frances graduated from LVR in 1961, then attended college in Nelson for secretarial/office training. She was employed for a time in Nelson, BC. Frances met her future husband, John Farkas in 1965. They had two children, Ramona and John. She became a widow at the young age of 24 (Ramona, 18 months and Johnny, 4 months at the time) when John was involved in a work-related accident at the Canadian Exploration Mine near Salmo, BC. Her and her family resided in Nelson for a short time then moved to Kinnaird (Castlegar) in 1970. Frances was employed first for the Town of Kinnaird in 1971 then the City of Castlegar (after its amalgamation in 1974). She had a variety of positions over her 20+ year career for the City.
In 1984, she met Luc Lafreniere, the love of her life. Luc and Fran married in 1996. They shared a total of almost 39 years together. Fran had a wide range of interests and was very involved in the community through various groups and clubs. She had been a member of the Selkirk Lady Lions; Castlegar-Robson Legion LA; St. Rita’s CWL, choir, and church council; Castlegar Quilters; IRIS; Golden Oldies Choir; Good Sam Club; and Cultural Interpretive Society. She loved to sew, knit, crochet, embroider, make ceramics, travel, camp, play the piano, bowl, and go walking to name a few.
Frances was predeceased by her first husband, John Farkas; her son, John Farkas; her sister and brother, Christine and David Hrytzak; her mother and father, Susanna and Eugene Hrytzak. She is survived by her husband, Luc Lafreniere; her daughter, Ramona Knudsen; and her only two grandchildren, Joshua and Mandi Knudsen.
Cremation has taken place. Funeral service will be held at St. Rita’s Catholic Church in Castlegar, B.C.
Friday, March 10, 2023, at 11:00 am with a luncheon to follow.
Burial at the Robson Cemetery will be held at a later date.
The Knudsen/Lafreniere family would like to extend their heartfelt appreciation to Dr. Nic Sparrow from the Kootenay Emergency Response Physicians Association (KERPA); Robson Fire Dept; BC Ambulance; and the Castlegar RCMP for all their efforts.
In lieu of flowers, a donation to KERPA in Frances’ memory would mean a lot to Ramona, Josh, Mandi, and Luc.
Funeral arrangements are under the guidance of the Castlegar Funeral Chapel.
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