Obituary Listings


September 26, 1926 May 11, 2018
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Mary Jane (Lawson) Francis passed away on Friday, May 11, 2018 in Republic, Missouri. Mary Jane was born September 26, 1926 in Sedalia, Missouri.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Guy W. and Laura I. (Engler) Lawson; and a brother, Major (Ret.) Robert W. Lawson, USAF.

Mary Jane is survived by her sons, Henry W. (Shirley) Francis, Jr., and Robert W. (Patricia) Francis; and a daughter, Janet L. (Eldon) Williams; six grandchildren, Theresa (Jamie) Kenny, Lori Francis, Katie (Eric Cunningham) Francis, William Francis, Lauren Francis, and Michelle Williams; five great grandchildren, Madelynn, Allison, Emelia, Tristan, and Cole; one step grandson, Dale; and two step great grandsons, Blake and Ryan.

Mary Jane was raised in St. Louis and Victoria, Missouri, and attended Hillsboro Public Schools. In her high school freshman year she was selected Homecoming Queen. During the latter part of World War II, Mary Jane worked in a small arms ammunition plant in St. Louis.

She spent many years of her life raising horses and ponies. Her children rode Shetland ponies in horse shows throughout the area. Mary Jane’s sewing skills were quite evident in the riding apparel her children wore in competition, and the tack accouterments that adorned the ponies. She was one of the original members of the DeSoto Trail Riders Saddle Club.

Mary Jane owned and operated The Hitchin Post restaurant in Hillsboro, and also restaurants in Festus and Lake Tishomingo. She also managed a Rembrandt Photography Studio, in St. Louis County. In the mid 1970’s, Mary Jane went to Alaska and cooked in a restaurant located on the Alaskan pipeline. She said her favorite job was being a cook on a tug boat that transited the Mississippi River; and her favorite pastime was making Indian Jewelry.

During her parents elderly years, Mary Jane provided love and care for them. She will be laid to rest next to her mother and father in Sedalia, Missouri.

In 2014 Mary Jane was a contestant in the Ms. Missouri Nursing Home Pageant. “Our hearts are so grateful to the staff of Republic Nursing and Rehab for their loving care of our Mother, and also to Regional Hospice."

A graveside service will be held for Mary Jane at noon on Wednesday, May 16, 2018 in the Memorial Park Cemetery, Sedalia, under the direction of Meadors Funeral Home, Republic. Family and friends may share online condolences on this website, at

To send flowers or a remembrance gift to the family of MARY JANE FRANCIS, please visit our Tribute Store.


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