Virginia Beach ~ Frances Donaher, age 78, passed away peacefully at her home in Virginia Beach, VA on May 8, 2020. She was born on June 20, 1941 in Boston, MA and was raised in Medford. MA. She is predeceased by her parents Domenic and Margaret (Russo) Bellistri. Fran married her longtime friend and love, Joseph Donaher Sr., in September of 1960 and they were happily married for 60 years. They spent most of their married life as residents of Milford, MA. In 2019, the lure of warmer weather and ocean beaches brought them to Virginia Beach.
Fran and Joe always wanted a big family and were blessed with 6 amazing children (3 sons and 3 daughters), 15 grandchildren and 10 great grandchildren. Fran will be sorely missed by her children, Joe Donaher Jr. and his wife Carol, of Hopedale, MA; Theresa (Donaher) Wright, and her husband Larry of Lincoln, RI; Edward Donaher and his wife Carol, of Virginia Beach, VA; Karen (Donaher) Klag and her husband Michael, of Jackson, NJ; Mark Donaher and his wife Tara, of Milford, MA; and Julie (Donaher) Motuzas, and her husband David, of Nashua, NH. Fran is also survived by her brother Frank Bellistri and his wife Ruth, of Windham, NH; and her sister Jody Bellistri, of Reading, MA.
Fran was an independent spirit and a social butterfly who loved people. She could enter a room full of strangers and leave having made a room full of new friends. Both her heart and her home were always open to everyone.
Fran loved taking cruises and traveling in general, baking with her grandchildren, quilting, sewing, reading, and entertaining family and friends.
Throughout her life, Fran was involved in many groups that kept her very active in the community. Her most recent involvement included the ‘Red Hatters,’ and being a member and volunteer at the Milford Senior Center. She was also a volunteer with Hospice which she found particularly fulfilling. For many years Fran worked at Coram Healthcare in Hopkinton, MA as an office administrator.
Fran was a devout catholic and was very involved in the church. She was a member of the Parish Council of Saint Mary’s church in Milford, MA. She also taught CCD and was active in many other church activities. Saint Jude was her patron Saint.
Fran would always say in times of grief or obstacles that life presented, “You only have 24 hours to feel sorry for yourself and then get over it and celebrate the good times and good memories.”
We welcome family and friends to attend a Celebration of Life which will be held in Hopedale, MA.
Due to the COVID 19 Pandemic, time and date are undetermined at this time.