>Frances Beaumont Norris

6 May


Florence lost one of its brightest lights on Wednesday evening. Frances Beaumont Norris — “Mima” to one and all — died suddenly after becoming ill earlier in the week. It’s almost inconceivable that a spirit that feisty could ever go dim. She was our person, the one we all went to with every little worry and she always had something witty to say to help. Some pearl of wisdom to get us over the hump.

Most days she could be found with the Lamplighter crew around lunch time. Her friends and family were everything to her. Gatherings on her front porch with a glass of wine were a mainstay in all of our lives.

She was born in Florence, SC at the Florence Infirmary on January 14, 1921 to Mr. and Mrs. George A. Beaumont. Always a smarty-pants, she graduated a year early from high school and spent lots of time at dances with the boys. One finally caught her eye and she married Frank C. Norris, Jr. (F.C.) on February 22, 1941.

After a few years traveling around with the Air Force, she settled back in Florence with her first child, Kathy, while F.C. fought overseas during World War II.

Always a feminist, she spent her time working while he was away and progressed in her career to become the Chief Financial Officer at TranSouth.

Even though she was a consummate southern belle, her insistence on equality and her modern views kept her ahead of her time. And, most recently, she scared off a home intruder with a loaded pistol. Don’t mess with Mima.

Anyone who knew her was better for it and the world is left with a gaping hole in her passing.

She is survived by her daughter, Kathy Norris, her daughter-in-law, Lucia Thompson, her “adopted” son-in-law, Prentice Thompson — all of Florence, SC; a granddaughter, Cassy Matthews, her husband, Kenny, and their two daughters – Lucia and Sella of Boulder, CO; a grandson, Cory Norris, his wife, Erin, and their three daughters – Ella, Sophie and Lola of Chapin, SC; and lifelong friends, Major and Louise Summerford also of Florence. Her husband and son, Frank Norris, III, preceded her in death.

The family will receive visitors on Friday, May 7 after 5pm at 610 S. Dargan Street. The visitation will take place at Waters-Powell Funeral Home on Saturday, May 8 at 1pm. A procession from the funeral home to Mount Hope Cemetery will be followed by graveside services at 3pm.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in her memory to the Florence Area Humane Society.


3 Responses to “>Frances Beaumont Norris”

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