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860 North Webster Avenue
De Pere, WI 54115
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Frances Vande Ven

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Frances Vande Ven Obituary
Vande Ven, Frances Lillian

Frances Lillian Vande Ven, 75, found peace in God's loving arms after a lengthy and hard-fought battle with Parkinson's disease. Fran, a beloved wife, mother, grandmother and friend, passed away at home with Bob by her side on Sunday, April 27, 2014. Fran was born on April 8, 1939 to the late John and Lillian Nesvacil in Denmark, Wisconsin. She was ready to rejoin the late members of her family and especially looked forward to be greeted by the pink flowers in heaven.

Fran and Bob met when they both worked at Fort Howard. Fran worked in the offices and was always impressed when Bob came to pick up his paychecks several days after pay day. On October 13, 1962, Fran married Robert Vande Ven at Holy Trinity Church. Together, Fran and Bob enjoyed camping, skiing and entertaining their friends. Fran also loved her various Bridge Clubs with her friends throughout the years. Fran and Bob were blessed with two beautiful daughters and five grandchildren: Holli (Larry) Surges and their children Bree, Gabrielle and Isaac; and Trisha (Earl) Buss and their children Martina and Renee. She is also survived by her sister, Delores (Dick) Kane.

In addition to her parents, Fran is preceded in death by her sisters, Lorraine (Dave) Gay; Marlene (Vern) Kummers and her brother, Jim Nesvacial.

Fran was known for her dedication and commitment. Throughout the 60s, 70s and 80s, she volunteered, sat on boards and chaired at numerous charities. Among them: St. Boniface Home and School; St. Vincent Auxiliary; Our Lady of Charity; City of Hope; Civic Music; Next Door Theater; Nazareth Guild; De Pere Catholic Women's Club; Cancer Drive (chairman); Girl Scout (leader); and Antiquarian Society. In 1972, Fran was awarded Most Volunteered in Brown County.

Fran had an extremely successful career in Interior Design where she earned even more honors of distinction. She never lost her passion and continued to help clients long after she retired from Ethan Allen. There is no doubt she is rearranging the furniture in heaven at this very minute! Fran will be remembered for her classic, glamorous style and her love for fashion. Despite Bob's protests, Fran loved sneaking off on shopping excursions and, in her later days, ordering clothing from catalogues. Fran loved her designer clothing and enjoyed sharing her wardrobe with her daughters and granddaughters.

Fran faced Parkinson's with an incredible strength and grace. She was a passionate, loving and strong woman with a radiant smile and an impeccable sense of style. May her strength, confidence and selflessness live on within our family. Fran, please continue to protect and guide us until we are together again.

Family and friends may call Wednesday, April 30, 2014 from 11:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. at Cotter Funeral Home, 860 N. Webster Ave., De Pere. A Celebration of her life will be at 2:00 p.m., with Steve Donovan officiating. Entombment will be in Allouez Mausoleum. Online condolences may be expressed at

A special thank you to her devoted caretakers, Carol and Laura (from Home Instead), who loved Fran dearly.


Published in Green Bay Press-Gazette from Apr. 29 to Apr. 30, 2014
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