Wednesday, January 13, 2021
11:00 AM EST
St. Frances de Sales
171 West 13th Street
Holland, MI 49423
At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.
St. Frances de Sales Church
171 West 13th Street
Holland, MI 49423
Life Story / Obituary
Vibrant, loving, and joyful, Frances M. Manifold lived a life rich in family and friends. With a zest for life and room in her heart for all, Fran was an inspiration to all who were blessed to know her. A devoted mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother, Fran embraced each moment as a gift and every person as a friend. She freely gave of her talents, lightening burdens and sweetening days. A powerful role model, Fran was treasured by many; she will long be remembered and ever so missed.
The beginning of 1929 continued to ride the decade's roaring wave of peace, prosperity, and hope. The nation celebrated the recent inventions of Penicillin, the iron lung, bubble gum, and the Yo-Yo, as well as Charles Lindbergh's Congressional Medal of Honor and Amelia Earhart becoming the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic. As the wave of sweeping social and economic growth rapidly increased, nowhere was there more hope for the future than in Blue Island, Illinois, as Roy & Helen (Aszman) Scheidel welcomed their daughter, Frances, into their family on February 16, 1929.
The fifth of the ten Scheidel children, Fran grew up during the Great Depression. Her Pa served as the Blue Island Police Lieutenant, while her Ma ran the home and tended to children. As the police were not paid at that time, her mother not only managed a very active household, but she also worked as a seamstress and baker. Family life centered around faith, family, resourcefulness, and perseverance. Their clothes were often homemade or acquired from St. Benedicts Church. Once, when Fran went to the church to pick out a pair of shoes, she came home with a pair of boots that held a knife for playing Mumbly-peg. As they were her only shoes, she had to wear them everywhere, including to church!
From a very early age, Fran loved being outdoors. Many days were spent enjoying games of tag, Red Rover, hide and seek, and marbles. Fran kept the marbles she won and her favorite "shooter" her entire life. Fran enjoyed going down the hill where all the neighbor kids would play ball, putting pennies on the railroad tracks to get them flattened, and attending a free family church camp during the summers, where she especially enjoyed swimming and hiking. Throughout her life, Fran fondly reminisced about shoveling the sidewalk and driveways down the whole block in the winter, just because she enjoyed it. In warmer weather, she would leave the house in the morning. She spent hours and hours walking and wouldn't return home until dark.
As a fourth-grader, Fran took harmonica lessons from a nun, inspiring a love for the instrument she shared until her final days. As a teen, Fran was a shy student. Though she enjoyed Math and English, especially writing, she refused to get up in front of her class to recite her work. Consequently, she had to repeat her "favorite" class to graduate from high school. During her senior year and the year after, she attended Turner Camp in Fox River Groves, Illinois, where her older sister Helen paid her entry fee. Turner Camp, or Turnverein, which means "gymnastics club" in German, focused on physical fitness and athletic instruction. While in attendance, Fran competed in the high jump and on the volleyball team. She just missed going to the Pan Am Games for volleyball.
A 1947 graduate of Blue Island High School in Illinois, Fran worked as a cashier at A&P, and at 19, she signed on to the Blue Island Dianas baseball team. Much like the stories documented in the movie, A League of Their Own, Fran was a part of a sports revolution, skillfully playing first base and batting as a switch-hitter.
In the late '40s, Fran met Bill Manifold, who, upon returning from service in WWII, rented the house next to the Scheidel's and opened the "Foto House," where he made his living shooting portraits and commercial photos. The pair began to date and were soon setting their hearts on building a future together. In May of 1951, the couple exchanged their marriage vows, officially beginning their 59-year adventure.
The newlyweds settled into married life and focused on saving up to buy property and build a home. While Fran worked as a cashier at Jewel, Bill was as a route man for Bowman Dairy. With hard work and commitment, the young couple purchased the lot at 151st and Cicero and began to build their house. Once the foundation and framing were complete, Fran and Bill finished all the inside work, including all the electrical and plumbing. Fran even made their kitchen cabinets. The home quickly became a welcome space for many neighborhood and family picnics; their yard was always filled with neighborhood kids playing on the tree swing. A few, including Judy and Dottie Neander, stayed close with Fran and Bill throughout their lives. During this time, Fran and Bill opened their hearts and home as foster parents (Bonnie Muza) and also started their own family. Three of their four children, Alan, Peggy, and Jim, were born while they lived in the home.
In 1962, Bill's parents, wanting to retire, asked Bill and Fran to take over their business in Michigan. After ten years of being together and raising a family in Illinois, they sold their home and moved to Saugatuck. They bought the business from Bill's parents and began running Pottawattamie Beach on Goshorn Lake. Two years later, their son John was born, completing the family.
For 20 years, the family ran the business, ensuring many a traveler's good time. During this time, Fran also tended to the good care of her family. She was an excellent cook and baker, as most of the town knew from pot lucks and birthday and anniversary cakes. Well, into her 80's, she still made birthday treats for the "boys" to bring to work and baked cookies for the doctors and nurses at the hospital. In addition to "mother," she had many other titles. These included Cub Scout troop leader and chauffeur. Many an hour was spent taking her children to and from organ lessons, recitals, and sports practices. Fran tirelessly supported all of her children's endeavors and was their greatest fan, enthusiastically cheering on their basketball games, track meets, band performances, and choir recitals. Her home was also a safe harbor for many treasured pets, including frogs, snakes, turtles, fish, white rats, and squirrels. The squirrels, Blackie and Charlie, were even carried in a coat pocket and treated to Tastee Freeze on occasion. A menagerie of dogs and cats became part of the family; Queenie and Ginger were two of the many.
Never one to be idle and always eager to contribute, Fran had a lot of jobs and participated in many activities. For a time, she served as a volunteer Gym Teacher for St. Peter's School and later helped Mr. Fries with gym classes at the old Saugatuck High School. She ran bingo for years at St. Peter's Church and sang in the church choir. Through her church friend, Bernie Boles, she joined the Douglas bowling league and later in Holland, winning many league championships over almost 30 years. For years, she and her friend Martha Kupres organized softball and volleyball leagues. She worked for the Laketown Township Parks and Recreation as Treasurer and board member and was a talented photographer. She developed and printed her work, shooting weddings, sports, and other memorable events in Saugatuck. Many of her photos were published in the Commercial Record. In honor of her work documenting countless school events over the years, Saugatuck High School dedicated a yearbook to her.
Many of the things Fran loved in her youth became lifelong passions. Her love for baseball found her taking the field all through her life, playing softball in Douglas, Michigan, on summer recreation teams, and on many church leagues throughout the years in Holland. Fran was still playing first base and switch-hitting at 70 years of age, on Alan's church league. Not only did Fran continue to play harmonica into her 90s, entertaining her great-grandchildren, friends, and neighbors alike, her love of walking also carried on her whole life. Fran walked with Peggy in the evenings around Clearbrook Golf Course, sometimes picking wild asparagus along the way. Fran also walked with her neighbor, Pauline Nichols. In her 80's, she was still walking three times a day up to six miles around her Holland neighborhood or on her treadmill. Fran enjoyed some traveling with her sisters, Marie and Harriet, family gatherings for holidays and birthdays, and many trips to the casinos with Harriet.
As Fran aged and required more support, she was lovingly enveloped by many family members and friends, including Aunt Harriet and Nancy Rosie. It was with this support that Fran's dynamic spirit continued to shine throughout her final days. Though it is difficult to imagine life in the absence of Fran's steadfast presence, may we find comfort in carrying her legacy forward. With each moment we choose to live wholeheartedly, freely give of ourselves in service of others, welcome a stranger as a friend, and enjoy a good long walk, we celebrate the many ways Fran gifted us. In this way, we keep her bright spirit alive and inspiring others as she so inspired us.
Frances M. Manifold, age 91, of Holland, passed away Friday, January 8, 2021.
Fran was preceded in death by her son, Jim; husband, Bill; brothers, Roy and Lee; and sisters, Helen Margaret, and Bea.
She is survived by children, Alan and Lori Manifold, Peggy Manifold and Daryl Petsch, John Manifold and Rob Zeller; grandchildren, Hollie Manifold, Alysa and Jon Hoffman; and great-grandchildren, Kammryn, Kylee, Spencer, and Daxton.
The family will receive visitors from 5:00pm to 8:00pm on Tuesday, January 12, at the Dykstra Funeral Home - Mulder Chapel, 188 West 32nd Street, Holland. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11:00am on Wednesday, January 13, at St. Frances de Sales Catholic Church, 171 West 13th Street in Holland. Father Charlie Brown will preside over the ceremony. Interment will be in Riverside Cemetery in Saugatuck, Michigan.
Memorial contributions may be made to St. Frances de Sales Church, 171 West 13th Street, Holland, MI 49423 or to Hospice of Holland, 270 Hoover Blvd, Holland, MI 49423.
Professional service entrusted to the Mulder Chapel.