Theresa Frances Duffy

Sep 29, 1931 – Jul 15, 2014

Theresa Frances Duffy obituary image 1



Theresa “Frances” Duffy, age 82 passed away peacefully on Tuesday, 07/15 in Federal Way. Frances is survived by her sons, Greg (Terri), David (Louann) and James Duffy; daughters, Rosemary (Sam) Bechara and Valerie Morris; (12) grandchildren; (5) great-grandchildren; sisters, Philo Mitchell, Gertrude Hutchings and Barbara Russo; brother, Patrick Cleary; numerous nieces and nephews.  She was preceded in death by her husband, Leo in 2003.


Frances was born September 29th 1931 in St John’sNewfoundland to parents Augustine Michael Cleary and Mary Margaret Warren.  She was the 3rd of 10 children.  A large extended family of Aunts, Uncles and cousins surrounded her as well.  Large gatherings of family and friends were the norm for her while growing up.  Close family ties made for plenty of spirited revelry and song.  Music played a big part in Mom’s life.  Her love of music is something she passed on to all her children.  Singing in church and on Newfoundland radio shows were joys of her youth. 


Faith, love and family were the cornerstones of Mom’s life.  Those three simple beliefs were how she led her life.  She met, fell in love and married American Serviceman Leo F. Duffy Jr and moved to SeattleWashington in the 1950’s.  Together they raised their 5 children and settled down in Federal Way.  For the next 50 years Frances and her husband built a life together guided by those cornerstone values.  Through life’s journeys and struggles they always had each other and the faith and values from which she never wavered.


Frances was a stay at home Mom.  This is an underappreciated and often overlooked job.  Daily life’s duties were tireless and never ending while raising 5 children during turbulent times in a new country.  She was the person who got things done……all day….every day.  She cooked meals, kept the house, managed the money and took care of the children.   She was also an emotional touchstone and sanctuary for anyone looking for the loving comfort that only a Mother provides. Plenty were the times a friend of one of the children sat at the dinner table or stayed in her home and was treated as member of the family. 


How lucky to be a child (or adult) in the care of Mom. Her greatest gifts to her children were her love, tenderness and her ability to forgive.  With Mom you always knew where home was. No matter what your circumstance, you could always go home.  If you’re aching heart needed mending or you celebrated a great accomplishment. If you needed a reminder of what was most important in a world that could be at times unforgiving, you always went home. 


Home truly is where the heart is.  She loved the company of her husband, family and friends.  Warm hugs and kisses were the greeting in the Duffy house.  You knew you were loved.  Her grandchildren and her great grandchildren had it even better.  Mom loved the babies.  She was a natural caregiver.  It was what she was put on earth do to.  She spent a lifetime never losing her faith in any of those values she was taught early on as a young girl growing up in a large loving family.  On Tuesday Mom went to be with Dad.  Her legacy is of the Christian values she stood for all her life.  She passed these on to her children, grandchildren and grand grandchildren.  These are the greatest gifts. They will live on in the hearts, minds and deeds of those who loved her most.  We miss you Mom.  If only we could have just one more hug and kiss.  Heaven must be beaming with pride to welcome such a kind and gentle soul.  Dad finally has his best girl back. We love you.



There will be a Rosary on Friday, 07/25 at 7:00 pm at St. Vincent DePaul Catholic Church.  Funeral Mass will be celebrated on Saturday, 07/26 at 1:00 pm at St. Vincent DePaul Catholic Church, 30525 – 8th Avenue S., Federal Way.  This is the church Mom and Dad attended for their entire adult lives. It is fitting that they send her home.  All friends of our family are welcome to attend.  Thank You. 


marie quilty
st.john's , nl
Aug 4, 2014

I have lots of wonderful memories of aunt frances she was a sweetheart and had the most welcoming deepest condolences to all the family

Barbara Russo
Edmonton , AB
Aug 4, 2014

What s beautiful tribute to my sister Frances I love you very much and I will miss you I will miss our visits our talks and the fun we had .Frances rest in peace with your Leo the love of your life

The Schamerhorn Family
Auburn , WA
Jul 26, 2014

We are so sorry that Aunt Francis past away. She was a wonderful person who will be greatly missed. We love you Aunt Francis!

Stephany Bruell
Seattle, WA
Jul 25, 2014

What a lovely tribute to your mother. Your parents were so dear to my parents and always so kind to us children. I have so many lovely memories of both your parents. Please know that I thought often of both of them. Please know that I'm thinking of all of you. Warmly, Steffi

Steve & Kiki Burke
Ft. Thomas, Ky
Jul 24, 2014

No doubt she was a lovely lady, and that beauty still lives among us through her children. You have our deepest sympathy and prayers.

kelli mann
puyallup, wa
Jul 23, 2014

I only met her a couple of times. She was sweet and loving and I know she will be missed.

Jul 23, 2014

Frances and Leo used to visit our house on Calver St. before they moved to the States.My mom, Frances' Aunt Annie, played the piano and Frances would sing. She was such a beautiful woman and what a voice! She was a wonderful person and your tribute to her certainly portrayed her beautiful spirit. Condolences from me and my wife,Eleanor.

Terri Duffy
Austin, TX
Jul 23, 2014

Oh Frances, we will miss you so much and so hard. You were such a warm, loving person. You were fun to laugh with. It was a joy to speak mother to mother with you. It was a blessing and an honor to have been able to know and love you for as many years as I did. Sleep in peace, mom. So glad you're with dad now.

Auburn, Wa
Jul 23, 2014

Mom I love you with all my Heart

mary margaret davis roberts
bishop's falls, nl
Jul 23, 2014

an amazing tribute to a beautiful and wonderful lady, i had the pleasure of meeting a beautiful lady to, my mom florence was the same as my aunt frances, she was a beautiful lady, we send our deepest condolences , R I P aunt frances i love you , wish comfort and peace to all of her family

Dan Davis
Paradise Newfoundland, Nl
Jul 23, 2014

I was very fortunate to have meet Aunt Francis during a couple of her visits to Newfoundland. She had a wonderful positive outlook and reminded me so much of my Mom. It is so easy to understand this wonderful tribute to her. She was obviously the same way in her every day life . Say hello to mom for me

Brenda and Breiana Wendt
Edmonton, AB Canada, Ab
Jul 22, 2014

This is he most touching and beautiful tribute I've ever seen. My beautiful Aunt Frances was one of the most tender, loving, sincere, beautiful and giving women I've ever known. I will miss her immensely. How blessed I was to have lives with her and loved her. Rest I'm peace in the arms of man whom you loved. I'll love you forever and I will miss you always.

Daisy, Patrick, Jesse and Ruby McConnell
Colorado Springs, CO
Jul 22, 2014

What a beautiful tribute to a tremendous life lived, with so much love throughout. We send our deepest condolences and wish you all comfort and peace.

Armand and Dorothy ablanedo
Sanleanna , Tx
Jul 22, 2014

Our thoughts are with u

Stephen & Diana Cleary
St. John's, NL
Jul 22, 2014

Those words are a graceful and honest recognition of Aunt Frances. She was a remarkable lady. We enjoyed her and Uncle Leo's visits to St.John's especially for our wedding. Our prayers are with you all. Rest in peace Aunt Frances.

Patrick @ Nora Cleary
St.John's NL, --
Jul 22, 2014

A beautiful tribute to a wonderful mother and loving

sister. Frances you will be missed.

Sharon (Cleary) and John Morris
Mount Pearl, NL
Jul 22, 2014

Such wonderful memories come to mind in reflecting on Aunt Frances' life and how it impacted ours: a wonderful, welcoming host who opened her Federal Way home to us as we continued to enjoy our honeymoon and vacation in 1974; a joy to be around on those many visits back to her birthplace in Newfoundland to enjoy Cleary family reunions; a confidante and easy to converse with older relative but more like a close friend. Many more memories than can be related in these few sentences. Always loved and remembered. May she rest in peace!

Ted & Betty Rector
Charlotte, NC
Jul 22, 2014

We are so very sorry for your loss. Frances was very special to us. Your family is in our thoughts and prayers.

Bobby and Carrie Flammia
Florence (Italy), xx
Jul 22, 2014

What a beautiful way to remember your mom. We are incredibly sorry for your loss and hope for peace and comfort during this very difficult time. Sending all our love........

Los Angeles , Ca
Jul 22, 2014

What a beautiful tribute for a beautiful soul. She was lucky to have kids like you, and you were lucky to have a mom like her. Her hugs may be invisible now, but it doesn't mean her arms aren't around you.

Heather, James, and Danny McGowan
Albuquerque, NM
Jul 22, 2014

This is the most beautiful tribute I have ever read! Absolutely lovely. We will hold you all in our hearts; it is times like these that the miles are hardest. We send our wishes of peace, and love.

James Leo Duffy
Edgewood, WA
Jul 22, 2014

I love you Mom!

Jeanette(Cleary) & Morgan Lundrigan &Family
Witless Bay, NL Canada, Ca
Jul 22, 2014

This is such a great tribute to a very special Aunt and Mother may all the love she gave to all of you be with you forever never forget it and cherish them always our thoughts are with you all at this very difficult time.

Dianne Walsh(Cleary),Gerald Walsh&Family
St. John's,Nl. Canada, Ca
Jul 22, 2014

We met Aunt Frances and Uncle Leo on many ocassions during their visits to Newfoundland. She was a very special lady, and will be greatly missed. We have many happy memories of these visits.

Alice Phillips
Seatac, WA
Jul 22, 2014

What beautiful words. There is nothing more special then a Mothers love. My thoughts and prayers are with all of you.

Alice Phillips


Judy & Aunt Philo
Auburn, WA
Jul 21, 2014

What a lovely tribute to my special aunt & sister. We send our love and prayers.

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