Frances McDuffie Geddie believed in the power of God, the importance of family, and the potential of children to grow up and make a difference in our world.
Her language was love. Translated, that might mean several things – spending hours reading to her grandkids, teaching hundreds of children during a 40-year career as an educator, joyfully volunteering at her church, and spending time with family and friends.
A strong Southern woman who experienced the loss of both a husband and two sons, Frances never let the sad times keep her down. Rather, she chose to focus on the positives in her life.
In her later years, Frances moved to Eastover, North Carolina, where she was lovingly cared for by her son David, daughter-in-love Lisa, grandchildren Logan and Tripp.
On Tuesday, May 19th, 2020, surrounded by her family, Frances traveled to her Heavenly Home. Her impact continues to be felt by loved ones who will be forever touched by Frances’s Christian example. She was the epitome of grace. Kind and thoughtful, she had a special place in her heart for all children who she treated like her own.
She was born on January 23, 1931, on a farm in St. Pauls, North Carolina. She was the youngest of 8 children.
Education was important to Frances, but her family could not afford to send her to college. Her minister stepped in to ensure that she received a scholarship to Flora MacDonald College in Red Springs, where she earned her teaching certificate in 1953. She taught third-grade students in Red Springs schools from 1953 through 1961.
Frances drove to Greenville on weekends to attend East Carolina University, where she received her Master’s degree in 1960. She taught kindergarten and first grade on Fort Bragg from 1961 through 1993.
Frances married the love of her life, David Williford Geddie Sr., in 1959. The couple built a home in Fayetteville, North Carolina, where they raised their family. Prior to marrying her husband, she adopted her deceased brother’s two children, Mary and Jimmy, before having two more sons, David and Richard.
The Geddies also found a church home at Camp Ground United Methodist. She was a devoted member and servant in many facets of the church, which gave her much joy. Later in life, Frances would be heavily involved in the Golden Elite seniors group and the Weslyanna Sunday School class. She was known for bringing home-baked treats to many church functions.
With an insatiable curiosity of the world, Frances enjoyed traveling near and far. Among the countries she explored were Scotland, England, Holland and Germany.
She was preceded in death by her husband in 1976, and also endured the heartbreak of losing sons James Ernest McDuffie Sr. (Jimmy) and Richard Benjamin Geddie.
Her survivors include: son, David Williford Geddie Jr. and wife Lisa Kennedy Geddie of Eastover; grandchildren, Logan Elizabeth Geddie Heine and husband Austin, and David Williford Geddie III (Tripp); daughter, Mary McDuffie Stoneman and husband Major (retired) William M. Stoneman Jr. (Bill) of Elgin, Oklahoma; grandsons, William David Stoneman and wife Melanie, Richard Neel Stoneman, Mark Randall Stoneman and husband Shon, Jacob Benjamin Geddie, James Ernest McDuffie Jr. (Jim) and wife Lisa and great-grandchildren Ashley and Preston.
In the words of her son David, “She was the most loving, caring and giving person that I’ve ever known. Besides being a wonderful mother, wife, daughter, sister, aunt and friend, she made a major impact on the lives of so many, and being a grandmother was her greatest joy. She spent as much time as possible with her grandchildren, reading to them and doing countless activities, which has left a lasting influence. Mama didn’t know the words, ‘No’ or ‘I can’t.’ Anything she was called to do, she did without complaint and enjoyed doing it.”
“As most of you know, Mama’s quality of life deteriorated over the past few years. Although it hurts to see her leave us, I couldn’t be happier to know that she is walking, talking and getting to see all her loved ones in the Promised Land. It is a sad blessing, but I know in my heart if there is a kitchen in Heaven, she is already whipping up a big pot of chicken and pastry and Mississippi mud cake, making sure that everyone has plenty to eat. We are all going to miss her, but we thank God for all of our precious memories.”
Because of COVID-19 concerns, the family has chosen to hold a graveside service at Camp Ground United Methodist Church, 4625 Campground Road in Fayetteville, on Friday, May 22nd, at 1:00 PM. Jernigan-Warren Funeral Home is in charge of handling the arrangements.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to: Camp Ground United Methodist Church, 4625 Campground Road, Fayetteville, N.C. 28314.
The family would like to thank everyone who has loved and supported Frances over the years, especially her dedicated caregiver, Dawn Barefoot, for her unconditional love and care. They would also like to send special thanks to 3HC Home Health Care and Hospice.
Online condolences may be left at http://www.jerniganwarren.com
Arrangements by Jernigan-Warren Funeral Home, 545 Ramsey St. Fayetteville, NC 28301.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Frances (McDuffie) Geddie, please visit our floral store.