Frances Feist '76 January 27, 2021 6:28 PM updated: January 27, 2021 6:34 PM
Frances Davis Feist
November 1, 1953 - December 27, 2020
Frances Davis Feist, loving mother and grandmother and friend and counselor to hundreds afflicted with addiction, died peacefully in Plano Dec. 27. She was 67.
Frances was born Nov. 1, 1953, in Cameron, Texas, and grew up in nearby Rogers.
She was the second youngest of 6 children. She joked that she was a shy bookworm until her younger sister, Laura, brought her out of her shell by dragging her to the local dance halls. Frances played clarinet in her high school band and twirled baton. She was academically recognized and was the first in her family to attend college, earning a Bachelor of Science degree in sociology from Texas A&M University in 1976.
In 1975 she married Joe Michael “Mike” Feist in Rowena, Texas. Their three children were born in Corpus Christi, Texas.
Frances had a deep faith in God that did not waiver despite hardship. She lost both her parents before age 26. After losing her mother, she was lovingly “adopted” by her husband’s extended family. She and her mother-in-law, Irene Feist, wrote letters, spoke on the phone and for the next 40 plus years never let anything get in the way of their relationship. She remained a part of the family even after she and her husband divorced.
Frances spent ten years in Lancaster, Texas, where she was a Girl Scout leader and member of a church community. She attracted friends through her talkative and honest nature. She had a special friendship with neighbor, Susan Youse.
It was her heart and profound compassion that led Frances to a career in social work, which she began in 1988. She was a licensed chemical dependency counselor, working for agencies in Dallas, then later in Bryan/College Station, San Antonio and then back in Dallas. Over her career she worked for Brazos Valley Counseling, Bexar County Detention Center, Dallas County 4-C SAFPF Unit, and Metrocare Services, among others. As a testament to her remarkable character, she maintained friendships with many former colleagues throughout the years.
Frances considered it an honor and a challenge to work with those who were battling mental illness as well as addiction. She humbly shared her life and her own struggles with her clients. She had a saying, “Pray, but move your feet.” Her impact on the world can’t be measured.
Frances courageously battled breast cancer into remission in 2002 but it returned in 2019. During the in-between years, Frances enjoyed life. She was a whiz at “Wheel of Fortune.” She was a night owl who loved sleeping in late on the weekends with a dog or two curled up next to her – she was undeniably an animal lover. She enjoyed ice cream, chocolate and watching shows like “Monk” and “House.” She also was a fanatic about the show “I Love Lucy.” She closely followed Texas Aggie sports and was passionate about the San Antonio Spurs. She was a voracious reader, especially mysteries and Stephen King novels. She never turned down a game of 42 or Tripoli. At a wedding or party, Frances was still dancing at the end of the night, not ready to leave. Always up for adventure, she traveled to Europe and Alaska. Her favorite trip was a safari in Kenya in 2017. Frances proudly stood beside her son Jason at his wedding in Bogota, Colombia, just five weeks before her death.
Frances gave the most valuable gift to her grandchildren – her time. Her grandchildren will not forget walking the dogs in the park, school concerts she attended, and the times she treated them to a night out at Medieval Times. She will be deeply and profoundly missed.
Survivors include her three beloved children, Shelley Warren ('00) and husband, Jason, of Arlington, son Jason Feist and wife, Ximena, of Bogota, daughter Allyson Feist of Plano; three grandchildren, Mizuki “Kyle” Feist, and Courtney and Emily Warren; and her former husband and friend always, Joe Michael Feist of San Antonio.
Other survivors include three sisters, Rose Maddux, of The Woodlands, Mary Adkins, of Gonzales, Louisiana, and Laura Wilde and husband Lloyd of Fort Worth, and numerous nieces and nephews.
A Life Celebration is scheduled for 2 p.m., Jan. 8, at North Dallas Funeral Home, 2710 Valley View Drive, Dallas, Texas. It will be live streamed for those unable to attend due to the pandemic.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests that donations in Frances’ honor be made to Breast Cancer Research Foundation (www.bcrf.org) or Frances’ local cancer support group, https://cancersupporttexas.org/.