Let me start out by saying, most things I have written in my life have been edited by someone, but one exception is my obituary. It’s my last chance to cut out the middle man and tell the world about me.
I, Charlene Francis-Carter was released from this worn out shell of a body and have left this world of incomprehensible chaos. I am now transferring into another life exploring the infinite cosmos and our immense universe. I entered the eternal life on Friday, May 11, 2018. My spirit will be carried on by my two adult children: Clarence (husband of Judy) and Juanita (fiancé of Richard) and two grandchildren: Ronita and Clarence Jr. Also, my dear sisters and brothers: Mary Turner, Lena Dodson, Dawn Dodson, George Dodson, Walter Dodson (Wife Tawni), Cathy Dodson, Vivian Hill and my angel sister Darla Davis (Husband Steve), along with many nieces, nephews, cousins, friends and others too numerous to list but not forgotten.
I was preceded in death by my husband, mother, daughter, son, two sisters and one brother along with several aunts and uncles.
I was born in West Chester, Pa on June 9, 1946, at West Chester Memorial Hospital. I grew up in Malvern and graduated from Cheyney University in 1978 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology. After earning my degree, I worked as an instructor at the ADAPT program for special needs adults and then later became Case Manager and Case Manager Supervisor for Chester County MH/MR. I than move to Chester County Administrative Office and worked as an EI Coordinator. As I was getting older I decided to transfer to Chester County’s Office of Aging where I worked as a Contract Monitor. I retired and ended my career with the County in 1998 after 20 years of service.
I enjoyed my flowers, jigsaw puzzles, taking pictures, exploring topics on my computer and reading about various forms of worship. I also enjoyed leisure strolls with my son and flea market shopping with my daughter. I was an avid watcher of political television and especially enjoyed watching how often politicians tell you a bald face lie and then observe their unwillingness to admit that they told us a bald face lie.
I was given the gift of life, and now I have to give it back. This is hard but I am no different than the leaves on the tree or day and night, everything changes and nothing is permanent, not even me or you. Death is a natural part of life, we are born to die. I was a lucky woman, who led a wonderful existence and for this I am grateful. I first got sick in November 2017. When I found out it was cancer, I decided to be joyful about having had a full life, rather than sad about having to die. Amazingly, this outlook worked for me. (Well, you know, most of the time.) My volunteer work with Hospice and Yoga meditation and deep breathing along with reading about middle eastern philosophies helped me accept what I could not change. At any rate, I am at peace. And on that upbeat note, I take my mortal leave of this constantly changing world and go now to greet my long-lost family and friends who have waited so patiently for me all these many years. Peace and love to each and every one of you.
I’ve decided not to have a viewing as I have chosen to be cremated and placed in an urn standing on a pedestal in front of you.
At my request, a portion of my ashes will be placed in a bio gradable container to be placed in the ground as a Japanese Maple tree and the rest will go in lockets for my family and in my urn. I will then be buried with my sister Pam in Philadelphia Memorial where the grave and headstone await us.
So, in the end, remember to do your best, follow your goals and make something amazing out of your life. Oh, and remember sometimes you have more rewards in life by helping others rather than chasing after the money. Whatever, you do stay strong, keep smiling and don’t let life reduce you to a puddle of tears. Cry when appropriate and get in there and fight when needed. If you want to, you can look for me in the evening sunset or the Japanese Maple tree at my former home. Of course, that will probably comfort some while agonizing others, but it’s up to you. I leave you with this…. Please don’t cry because I’m gone; instead be happy that I was here. (Or maybe you can cry a little bit, after all, I have passed away).
My beloved friends and family, how precious you all have been to me. Knowing and loving each one of you was the success story of my life. Metaphorically speaking, we will meet again, joyfully, on the other side.
Love Always, Charlene Francis-Carter
My family will be receiving relatives and friends from 9 to 10 am on Saturday, May 19th at the James J. Terry Funeral Home - VALLEY TOWNSHIP, 1060 W. Lincoln Highway, COATESVILLE, followed by her memorial service at 11 am.
Following the interment, a repass will take place at 1 pm at the Downingtown Area Senior Center, 983 E. Lancaster Avenue, Downingtown.