Brownwood - Frances Pearl Smith Thurman, age 92 of Brownwood passed from this life on April 9, 2021. A visitation will be held on Monday, April 12th at the Heartland Funeral Home from 4 to 6 pm. Funeral Services will be 2 pm on Tuesday, April 13th at the Rocky Creek Baptist Church with Pastor Rick Justice officiating. Interment will follow at the Rocky Creek Cemetery.
Frances was born July 12, 1928 in Munday, Texas to Willie Leo and Bonnie Ruth (Miller) Smith. Frances was their third of ten children and oldest daughter. Frances grew up in Goree, Knox City, and graduated from Anson High School in Jones County. She married Richard Lee Thurman on January 15, 1949 in the Thurman family home in the Corinth Community in Jones County. They farmed for a couple of years. Then they moved for his job in the oilfield. Their home in west Texas was Monahans. She and their children went overseas with him when he worked a couple of contracts for oil companies in the Sahara in North Africa. After he quit the oilfield, they moved to their Lake Brownwood home.
Frances then helped him with his refrigeration business. She also worked at the steak house at the lake. Frances went back overseas with her husband later on and lived in Abu Dhabi for a year.
Frances enjoyed growing plants and working in the yard. She loved her grandchildren and had the good fortune of many happy times with them. She was 'Nana' to them. Frances was a loving mother, friend, and always had a way of making everyone love her.
Frances belonged to Eastern Star in Anson, Texas. She belonged to the Baptist Church at Corinth, Monahans First Baptist Church, the Southern Baptist missionary church in Tripoli, Libya, N.A., and Rocky Creek Baptist Church at Lake Brownwood. As a Girl Scout leader in West Texas, she took the girls tp Mitre Peak in the Davis Mountains. On Sunday morning she took her Bible and the girls up on a high rock and told them she wanted them to know they could worship God even if they weren't in a church building. Frances established a girl scout troop in Tripoli and took the oil workers daughters to visit ancient ruins or just to eat pizza. Frances took her children to the Southern Baptist missionary church in Tripoli, which was attended by families of oil company workers and some airmen stationed at Wheelus U.S. Air Force Base. She held some of the Friday night Bible study 'get-togethers' at her villa in Georgimpopoli. Frances, always the adventurer, took a cruise around the Mediterranean, with her three children seeing Alexandria, Cairo, Giza, Beirut, Crete, and Athens. And while traveling through Europe visited London, Paris, Naples, Rome, and Zurich.
Frances enjoyed playing 'Bridge'. She was a member of the Petroleum Wives Club and Underwater Explorers Club in Tripoli, she worked as a nurse in the Stamford hospital and in the cafe in Anson before she married.
Frances was preceded in death by her husband of fifty years Richard Lee Thurman, granddaughter Christi Nelson, parents Leo and Ruth Smith, sister Mary Ruth Forkner, brothers Gene Smith, Leonard Smith, Clifford Smith, Johnny Smith, and Kenneth Smith.
She is survived by her three children: son Richard Doyle Thurman and wife Nany, daughters Judy Weatherford, and Janis and husband Carl Owen. Seven grandchildren: Emily, Espie, Jennifer, Richard Luis, Kevin, Rhonda, and Dustin. Six great-grandchildren and one great-great grandchild. Two sisters: Dot Falkner and Bea Calhoun, brother Harold Smith.
Frances had been a member of Rocky Creek Baptist Church for fifty years and will be buried in their cemetery beside her husband.
Frances' family would like to send a special thank you to all the staff at the Songbird Lodge Nursing Home for the love and care they have shown her over the years.
In Lieu of flowers donations can be made in memory of Frances to the Corinne T. Smith Animal Center, 3015 Milam Dr. Brownwood, Texas 76801.
Condolences, memories and tributes can be made to the family at www.heartlandfuneralhome.net
Posted online on April 14, 2021