Francine "Cennie" Ruth White McCants was born in Pittsburgh, March 9, 1943, to the late E. Beatrice (White) Wise and Andrew White Jr. She departed this life peacefully at home, surrounded by her family, Saturday, Nov. 14, 2020. Francine spent her early years in the Woods Run (North Side) section of Pittsburgh. She was the oldest of three daughters. Francine accepted Christ at an early age at Metropolitan Baptist Church under the pastoral leadership of the late Rev. Obadiah L. Sims, where she served as a member of the choir and other ministries. She met the love of her life, Thomas McCants, when her family moved to East Jefferson Street in the Central North Side of Pittsburgh. They began dating in the eleventh grade and attended their senior prom together. They graduated in 1961 from Allegheny High School in Pittsburgh. Francine continued her education at The Lillian S. Kaufmann School of Nursing. She accepted a nursing position at Montefiore Hospital, where she was identified as a favorite babysitter for the families of several doctors on staff. (Later in her career, she was also known to "babysit" the doctors.) In 1966, Francine and Thomas exchanged vows at Metropolitan Baptist Church. Immediately after their wedding, Thomas was drafted to the Vietnam War to fulfill his Army ROTC commitment. After Thomas served his tour, he and Francine were stationed at Army bases in Texas, New Jersey and Kentucky, where Francine served as a registered nurse at the base hospitals. After Thomas' retirement from the Army in 1971, he and Francine returned to Pittsburgh and settled in Monroeville. To their loving union, two children were born, Tracey Renee and Bari Lynn. Francine continued her nursing career at Magee-Women's Hospital in the labor and delivery department, where she eventually became the head nurse. While working, Francine continued her studies at LaRoche University, where she received her bachelor of science in nursing (Magna Cum Laude). Francine's expertise and bedside manner made her a sought-after instructor in labor and delivery for the Pittsburgh Paramedics, community instructor on female reproductive health and an expert witness in various court cases. She was also a consultant with the Miramed-Magee team that trained Russian physicians, nurses and midwives on the modernization of birthing techniques and facilities. Francine made numerous trips to Moscow, Russia (Saviors Hospital for Peace and Charity) to assist with their modernization project. Nursing was her true passion and calling and she was the consummate professional. While out in the community, she was often recognized by her voice, a strong, confident yet calm voice, that provided instruction during the birth of their child. She was also an often-sought-after "emergency" nurse on Firethorn Drive who tended to many cuts, bumps and bruises of the children and adults on her street. During her retirement, Francine enjoyed traveling with her husband, children, grandchildren, family and friends. Francine was a supportive participant in her daughters' lives. She was a homeroom-mother at their schools and favorite Girl Scout Troup leader. She was also their guiding force, confidant and role model. She was a doting grandmother who helped with the rearing of her oldest grandson, Marcelius. She was a veracious reader and all of her reading paid off when she was selected to try out as a contestant on Jeopardy. As a fierce advocate of education, she was an honors student from elementary through high school and a Magna Cum Laude in college. She was a proud member of the Sigma Theta Tau (Theta Mu Chapter) International Honor Society for Nursing and recipient of their 1993 Experience in Practice Award. She was preceded in death by her mother, E. Beatrice Wise, her father, Andrew White Jr., Henry Wise (her daddy who raised her after her father's death), and her nephew and Godson, James Raymond Wise Thomas. Francine leaves to cherish her memory her loving husband of 54 years, Thomas McCants; two daughters and a loving son-in-law, Tracey McCants Lewis and Bari (Tiderro) Williams, all of Pittsburgh; four grandchildren, Marcelius Lewis II, Alaysha Williams, Tiderro Williams II and Kiara Williams; two sisters, Constance Renee White and Gail Wise Thomas; two sisters-in-law, Annette Green and Carole McCants; an aunt, Lillian (Henry) Barksdale, Godson, Kiere Bulls, and a host of cousins, nieces, nephews, other family and numerous friends. Family and friends will be received from 4 to 8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 20, 2020, at WHITE MEMORIAL CHAPEL, 800 Center St., Pittsburgh, PA 15221. (Masks are required for entrance to the funeral home. All recommended social distancing practices will be followed.) On Saturday Nov. 21, 2020, a private service will be held at White Memorial Chapel at 11 a.m. Guests may view the service via livestream on Zoom (Meeting ID 886 3144 9079) (Passcode: 878809). In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to Alzheimer's Association
, The Greater Pennsylvania Chapter.