Frances A (Chapin) Bass

January 25, 1932 ~ September 7, 2021 (age 89)


Frances A. Bass (née Chapin) passed away peacefully on Tuesday, September 7, 2021 in Tacoma, Washington.  She was born on January 25, 1932 in Washington, D.C. and grew up in the city first near Capitol Hill and later in Hillcrest.  She graduated high school from St. Patrick’s Academy in 1950 and Washington School for Secretaries in 1951. She worked as a secretary in the Chemistry Division, of the Naval Research Laboratory for the following six years.  She married her husband of 57 years, Charles, and assumed the life of a full-time mother after her first daughter was born a year later.  After bearing six children, she helped to move her large family to San Diego, California.  As children left home, she resumed work and increased her volunteering in the schools.  She and her husband retired in 2005 and moved to Williamsburg, Virginia. After her husband passed away, she moved into the Williamsburg Landing Retirement Community.  Later, as her health declined, she moved to Tacoma, Washington near her eldest daughter.

Frances was always a woman of strong faith and active in her church.  She enjoyed her time as an alto in the choir at Holy Family Catholic Church in Hillcrest Heights, Maryland, and a long-time member of the singing group at Our Lady of Mount Carmel in San Diego, California.  Later, in Williamsburg, she joined St. Bede Catholic Church. 

As an only child Frances learned to entertain herself with handcrafts including sewing, needle work and especially crocheting.  She carried these skills and interest through her life by bestowing her works on her children and grandchildren.  Later in life she became a prolific contributor of hats, blankets, and jackets for newborns through church charities. She was a regular at weekly knitting clubs at St Bede and Williamsburg Landing. 

Frances will be best remembered for her dedication to her family. She provided kindness, encouragement, support, and a strong moral example.  She succeeded in getting each of her six children through college and started in their life.  She was preceded in death by her husband, Charles Sr.  She is survived by her six children: Catherine, Charles Jr., Mary, Patricia, Stephen, and Michael; sixteen grandchildren; and one great-grandchild. 

In lieu of flowers, you may donate to the St. Bede Knitting Ministry at St. Bede Catholic Church, 3686 Ironbound Road Williamsburg, VA 23188 (Donation is to St. Bede, memo St. Bede Knitting Ministry)

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