BAGGS, JOAN "FREC" ORR
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Ocala - Joan "Frec" Orr Baggs, 92, passed away in Ocala on December 22, 2013.
Frec was born on October 20, 1921 in Athens, Georgia and raised on historic Carrs Hill. As an undergraduate, she attended the University of Georgia and received her Master's degree in Romantic Languages from Northwestern University. During World War II, Frec served in the WAC and the Red Cross, where she met the love of her life, William Calhoun "Bill" Baggs. Bill Baggs Cape Florida State park is named for him, due to his efforts to conserve the land for the people of Miami. Bill Baggs preceded her in death in 1969. Her husband was best remembered as Editor in Chief of The Miami News which under his leadership and tenure, the paper won four Pulitzer Prizes. He was also a civil rights leader, diplomat and Presidential advisor to John F. Kennedy. He was nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize in 1968 for his efforts to bring closure to the Vietnam War.
Frec was a renaissance woman, with style and distinction. Bill and Frec were active members of the Biscayne Bay Yacht Club. They enjoyed sailing on the Bay and many cups of her favorite chowder. She was an English teacher (Ransom Everglades School) a tutor, an author, a realtor, member of the Junior League, bridge player, avid tennis player and fashion designer of her own clothing line named, Frec Baggs.
Frec adored her two sons, Craig and Mahoney, who were raised in the French Village of Coral Gables. The Baggs family entertained dignitaries at their home, a role in which Frec was very comfortable, as she was an accomplished Southern cook and hostess. Frec's legacy will live on through her many acts of kindness. She was admired and will be deeply missed by her family.
Preceding her in death, are her parents, Craig and Sally Orr; husband Bill; sisters Sally Orr Nathanson and Ann Orr Morris. Joan is survived by sons Craig (Mary) Baggs of Ocala and Mahoney (Valerie) Baggs of Miami; grandchildren Kate, Trevor, Ann Taylor and Ramsey; great granddaughter Savannah Jenkins; nieces, Joan Morris (Charles) Hodge, Julia Nathanson (Drew) Cobb; nephew Bob (Denise) Morris; grand nieces, Annie and Charlotte; grand nephews John and Will; and a host a cousins and friends.
Frec by faith was Episcopalian and a member of the Chapel of the Venerable Bede in Coral Gables, Florida. A private memorial service will be held in Athens, Georgia on January 18, 2014. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations in her memory be made to the Red Cross.
Published in Ocala Star-Banner from Jan. 5 to Jan. 6, 2014