Frances Spielfogel

Frances Spielfogel

Frances Spielfogel, died peacefully on Monday, March 4, 2013, with her loving niece, Helene Muldoon, at her side. Fran was born June 7, 1916 in Asbury Park to Antoinette and Anthony Yavarone. She had 5 sisters and 3 brothers and lived in a small house on Borden Ave. Anthony's tragic and untimely death made Fran, at 12, the family's primary breadwinner. She held jobs at the 5 & 10, the Paramount theater, Consolidated Laundry and elsewhere, yet managed to graduate with honors from Asbury Park High School. In evidence even at this young age was her strength of character, selflessness, dedication to family, innate intelligence and hard work.

In 1939, she married Stanley Spielfogel. She adored, "my Stanley" and they enjoyed many very happy years together. Their daughter, Helene, however, was severely damaged at birth. Fran, with great courage and love, took care of Helene, at home, until she died in 1957 at age 12. In 1960, Stan died after a long battle with kidney disease. He was 44. She would lovingly speak of her Stanley until her last days. Only Fran's deep-seated Catholic faith and her inner strength enabled her to endure these losses and go forward. She had taken a job with World Book Encyclopedia as a sales person and was very good at it. She would go on to have a successful and rewarding career; becoming a branch manager and handling strategic assignments in Louisiana, California, Massachusetts, Italy, England and finally Australia as head of sales. As her working days came to a close, she continued to be the loved and loving "Aunt Fran" to her many nieces and nephews and their children; became the irreplaceable volunteer at Jersey Shore Medical Center, taught reading at the local elementary school, swam, played tennis, well into her eighties, did the Sunday Times crossword puzzle, took courses at Monmouth College, getting all A's and knitted beautiful things for the kids. Fran was inspirational to all who knew her, intelligent, well read, infectiously ready to laugh; a woman of great integrity, honor and character. She was truly one of a kind.

Fran is survived by her son Kenneth, her daughter-in-law, Susan, her adored grandchildren Will and Emme, her sisters Grace and Isabel and her nieces and nephews and their children. A mass will be held for Fran at Sacred Heart Church in Bowie, Maryland.


Published in Asbury Park Press on Mar. 16, 2013