Frances May Forscutt Hartshorn Griffiths, age 91, of American Fork, Utah peacefully passed away in her sleep Wednesday, November 22, 2017 of natural causes due to age.
Fran was born February 22, 1926 in Wellingborough, Northamptonshire, England to loving parents, Harry Arthur and Frances May Forscutt. Although she was born during the great depression she enjoyed a very happy childhood with her parents, older brother Charles, sister Margaret and younger brother Harry and extended family.
During her youth, she was an active member of the Congregational Church and the Girls Brigade. When World War II broke out Fran’s life changed drastically. After completing her education at fourteen years old she went to work in a factory sewing uniforms for the Royal Air Force. She often shared stories from this period in her life. She once had many Sunday School children in her care and was assigned to get them home safely from church when a bomb was dropped on her city. She managed to get all of the children into a shelter. All of their mothers were so grateful they cried tears of joy when she safely returned the children to their homes.
Although the rationing and horrors of war surrounded her she was able to develop her great love of ballroom dancing as she attended dances at the US Army Base that was close to her home. It was during this time she met and fell in love with an American GI, James Hartshorn, Jr. They were married May 21, 1945. Her new husband was quickly restationed to France. A year later after Armistice Day he was sent home to Lehi, Utah. She patiently waited for permission to join him in America. After a lengthy storm filled crossing of the Atlantic Ocean, on the Queen Mary, she arrived safely in New York Harbor. Her journey continued on a train until she disembarked at a whistle stop in Lehi. As she stepped off the train onto the dusty road she was sure she had arrived into the wild and woolly west. They would eventually become the parents of two children, Sylvia Jean and Clifton Lee. Jim and Fran raised their children in American Fork. After 25 years of marriage their union ended in divorce. In 1970 she married A. Warren Griffiths. They were sealed in the Temple in 1974 and enjoyed 35 years together.
Although not a member of the LDS church, while living in Lehi, she was asked by a Bishop to teach a Sunday School class. Through her weekly lessons she discovered her testimony and was baptized a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. She would go onto serve in many church callings, including teaching Sunday School for 20 years and as a temple worker for another 20 years. She had a great love of the gospel for the rest of her life.
She was a hard worker. Her employment included working at the Utah Woolen Mills in SLC, as a lunch lady at American Fork Junior High School, and later at the American Fork Training School. She also shared her great talent of sewing with many friends and family.
Her lifelong passion of dancing continued up until the time of her death. The highlight of her week was going to the Murray Heritage Center where she seldom sat out a dance. Her love of travel also took her to many far away destinations. But nothing was more important to her than her family. She loved to spend time with her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.
She is survived by her children: Sylvia Jean Baker and Clifton Lee Hartshorn, grandchildren: Gregg (Synde) Benson, Tami (Todd) Burgon, Michelle (Jeff) Jensen, Shauna (Ryan) Marcusen, Ryan (Kristi) Hartshorn, Clint Hartshorn, Matt (Katie) Hartshorn, and 20 great-grandchildren. She was warmly greeted on the other side by her parents, siblings, her second husband, a son-in-law, a granddaughter, and two great-granddaughters as well as many extended family members and friends.
Funeral services will be held, November 27, 2017 at 11 a.m. in the American Fork 6th/8th Ward, 300 North 100 East. A viewing for friends and family will be held Sunday from 6-8 p.m. at Anderson & Sons Mortuary, 49 East 100 North, American Fork and Monday 9:45-10:45 a.m at the church prior to the services. Burial will be in American Fork Cemetery. Please share a memory below.
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American Fork Chapel
49 East 100 North
American Fork, UT 84003
Lone Peak Chapel
6141 West 11000 North
Highland, UT 84003