Francine Rose Fish, 69

Francine Rose Fish passed away in her home at the age of 69 on Sunday, February 20, 2011, surrounded by her family.  She was born in Warroad, Minnesota on December 24, 1941, to Mabel and Patrick (James) McCourt.     She married John (Jack) Fish in 1961 and raised her family in the Lake of the Woods area.

She is survived by her five children, Russell Fish of Williams, April Stavig (Dennis) of Williams, Alan Fish (Wanda Welch) of Baudette, Christine Dorry (Rob) of Grand Rapids, Rita Fish-Whitlock (Brett) of Roseau: Sisters, Pat Martagon (Val) of Motley, Mary Hamilton (Bill) of Baudette, brothers, David McCourt (Linda) of Roseau and Jim McCourt of Baudette.

She is also survived by her grandchildren: Hailey Fish, Amber and Stephanie Stavig, Jasmine Fish, Ashley Welch, Brandon Young, Cheyenne Keeler, Grant, Garrett and Katelyn Dorry, Samantha, Tara and Josie Whitlock.

Francine was born and raised in Williams, Minnesota where she graduated in 1959. Always the entrepreneur, Francine started her own tax preparation business while raising her family in the area.

She also dabbled in real estate until she took the leap and enrolled in college at the age of 40.  Francine earned her Bachelors of Science degree in Accounting in 1987.  Following employment with Lake of the Woods County environmental services department, Francine found her way back to real estate where she purchased Lake Country Realty and Woodland Mobile Home Park in 1993.  Francine loved helping young people buy their first homes.  As a lifelong student who was fiercely independent she was never afraid of a hard day’s work and often tackled her own repairs in the rentals she owned. She was a savy businesswoman who was well respected amongst her peers.

Francine enjoyed socializing with friends over coffee, playing cards, dancing, reading, camping, golfing, counting cards at the casino, building her empire and spoiling her grandchildren.  Much like her mother Mabel, she was known to take in stray souls to give them a hand up in life, even when she didn’t have much herself.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Mabel McCourt and James Patrick McCourt.

Funeral services will be held on Thursday, February 24th at 2:00 pm at the Wabanica Lutheran Church north of Baudette, MN.  Visitation will be one hour prior to the services at the church.  Interment will be at the Pine Hill Cemetery in Williams.

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