Frances Ellen (Folger) Felber

Frances Ellen (Folger) Felber

Passed: July 07, 2024
Charleston, WV

Frances Ellen (Folger) Felber

Passed: July 07, 2024
Charleston, WV


Frances Ellen (Folger) Felber died at Arthur B. Hodges Center at Edgewood Summit in Charleston, West Virginia, on July 7, 2024. Frances, the fourth of six children, was born in Fargo, North Dakota, on November 30, 1928, to Frances Irene (Ritteman) and Virgil Francis Folger. She grew up in Hawley, Minnesota, supported by her extended family, including her Granny and great Aunt Roxey. She has maintained relationships with persons in that community since her childhood.

Fran graduated Moorhead State Teachers’ College in 1950 with a B.A. in English. In 1964, she continued her education at the University of Minnesota, graduating in 1966 with an M.A. in Special Education. In 1980-81. she completed post-grad training in teaching visually impaired and multi-handicapped students at the University of Virginia.

Fran’s first teaching position was in Fergus Falls, Minnesota, where she taught 8th grade English from 1946-51. From 1952-55, she taught high school English in Sisseton, South Dakota. After receiving her Master’s, Fran was an itinerant teacher of visually impaired students in the Twin Cities area for many years, employed primarily by Joint Independent District 287, until her retirement.

Fran was a member of Delta Kappa Gamma, Osseo Area Retired Educators organization and Retired Educators Association of Minnesota. She served as secretary of the Vikingland Retired Educators Association, and she was a volunteer for Red Cross in Alexandria, Minnesota.

Fran was God’s faithful servant, loving Him with her whole mind, body and spirit. She was always active in a local church, beginning at age five, when she first attended Hawley Methodist Church. She later served as a deaconess at Brooklyn Center Baptist Church in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota. She was a charter member of Grace Baptist Church in Alexandria, providing child care on Sundays for many years.

Fran met Rodney Jeanne Felber in biology class while at Moorhead State. They were married on June 10, 1951, and later had two daughters, Carolee and Stacey.

Fran and Rod camped extensively each summer, first as newlyweds, and later with their daughters. Fran developed a great love for the outdoors, becoming a gifted wildlife spotter. The family’s numerous tenting trips took them from East to West Coast and many destinations in between. Fran insisted on using a tablecloth at mealtimes, even when the “table” was an upside-down canoe. She saw to her family’s comfort in “the wild,” too, cleverly saving packing space by cutting old pillows in half to cradle their weary heads.

In 1968, Fran and Rod purchased a cabin on Woman Lake, and every year, as summer began, the family relocated to their log and stone refuge in the woods. Fran spent hours sewing, weeding the family’s swimming area and conducting expeditions to a nearby dump in search of “treasure.”

Fran and Rod had a lifelong interest in missions. Fran supported missionaries stationed in both Minnesota and abroad, building relationships with them through regular correspondence. She sewed dresses for the girls in a family stationed in Ethiopia.

In 1990, Fran and Rod moved to Vienna, Austria, where they worked with Child Evangelism Fellowship, supporting a team that served countries behind the Iron Curtain. The couple managed the European Outreach office that served as the base for 27 missionaries in Eastern Europe, and its associated warehouse, which provided Christian books to missionaries in their home countries’ languages. Fran’s four-year posting took her to Yugoslavia, Bulgaria, Hungary, the Czech Republic, and Slovakia. In 1994, she and Rod assisted with relocating the office to Poland.

On returning to Minnesota, Fran and Rod began wintering in Sun City, Arizona, and they traveled extensively. They greatly enjoyed learning about other cultures by visiting many countries in Europe on formal tours and on their own, and traveling to Australia and New Zealand.

Fran is survived by two daughters: Carolee Felber and her husband, Christopher Dutch of Charleston, West Virginia, and Stacey Lucius and her husband, Leland of Chanhassen, Minnesota; one brother, Dale, and many nieces and nephews.

Fran was preceded in death by her parents; her husband of 64 years; two brothers, William “Billy” and Keith; and two sisters, Carolyn Ward and Kathleen Christensen.

The family wishes to thank the staff at the Ridgemont and Arthur B. Hodges at Edgewood Summit and Hospice Care, who gave Fran a comfortable place to call home for the last two years. Also, thank you to the Powerback Rehabilitation staff who helped Fran maintain her independence.

A service in celebration of Fran’s life will be held in Minnesota at a date to be determined in August. Interment of ashes will take place at Fort Snelling National Cemetery in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Memorial donations may be made to the Grace Baptist Church Building Fund, 1704 Hazel Hill Road, Alexandria, MN 56308 or The Mailbox Club in Valdosta, Georgia, at .

You may send condolences to Fran’s family at .

Barlow Bonsall Funeral Home has been entrusted with arrangements.

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1 responses to Frances Ellen (Folger) Felber

  1. Carolee my condolences to your family. What a beautiful obituary of your Mother’s life. May God continue watching over your family

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