Obituary of Farid Francis
Passed away peacefully on Palm Sunday morning April 2, 2023 at the age of 78, surrounded by his family, his (new) friends and extended family of the Hospice of Windsor Essex.
He is survived by his loving wife Arlette (nee Nader) of nearly 50 years, children Eddie, Roger (Tiffany), Fred (Carolyn), and grandchildren Pierce, Sienna, Preston and Phoenix, and is predeceased by his daughter-in-law Michelle Prince (Eddie), brothers, and sister.
Farid was born on June 9, 1944 in the small town of Zeghrine, Lebanon, 21 kilometers east of Beirut, and was the youngest son of ten children to Choucri and Tuffaaha Francis.
Although his heart remained rooted in his beloved homeland as the memories and spirit of Lebanon maintained his youthful joy, he was passionately loyal to his adopted home of Windsor, which in 1970 welcomed him as an immigrant who was seeking a better opportunity and in turn was rewarded with a life filled with meaningful purpose, surrounded by a loving family, amazing friends, and a caring compassionate community.
Farid married his wife Arlette in 1973 in Lebanon, and together they left their families and life as they knew it for a new and exciting journey in Windsor. A jeweler by trade, Farid immigrated to Windsor with little money and no formal education. He had a strong, determined work ethic and, like many immigrants of that time, he endured the humbling hard grind of scraping together savings from a variety of unfamiliar jobs, overlapping shifts, and little rest.
He was grateful for the opportunities afforded to him as he began to plant his family roots, working as a cook at Windsor Raceway; on the line at Kelsey Hayes as a member of CAW 195; and with his free weeknights and weekends, he moonlighted as an aluminum siding installer.
Farid’s entrepreneurial spirt inspired him to cofound Francis Mediterranean Bakery on Tecumseh Road East in 1977, one of Ontario’s first pita bread manufacturers and distributors, serving the large Arab population on both sides of the Canada-USA border. Two decades later, his craft and expertise was instrumental in the establishment of the Royal Pita Baking Company.
Over the course of his career, Farid has been recognized and celebrated for sharing Lebanese cuisine and culture in both Canada and the United States providing newcomers with the same chance, employment and opportunities that Windsor gifted him.
In his later years, Farid spent much of his time traveling between Windsor and his beloved Lebanon, where he visited with his family and friends. Farid was a loving husband, devoted father, grandfather, and loyal friend to many. He will be missed dearly.
Over the last three months we have been grateful for the love, support and friendship of all the volunteers, staff, personal support workers, nurses and doctors of the Hospice Windsor Essex. We are eternally grateful to Nancy Brockenshire and her team of angels who give of themselves every day attending to the wishes and needs of our families, loved ones and community during our time of need. Each of you made it possible for us to enjoy the most of his final days sharing our memories with our father and husband and of course discovering his new found love for Ginger Ale.
A special thank you to Dr. Paul Ziter for his care and friendship over the years. Also, many thanks to Dr. Alex Tsiaprailis, Dr. Garghill, Dr. Bergeron, Dr. Rukavina and the entire team of doctors and caregivers who provided Farid with the care and support over the years. To each of the nurses and caregivers at Hospice we cannot in words express our gratitude to each of you for your round the clock care, compassion and support over the past several months. All of you are indeed inspirational and we are grateful that he had you there every day watching over him as he was part of your family.
To know him was to appreciate his determined work ethic centered around strong sense of purpose and principle, but to appreciate him was to know of his loyalty.
Visitation will be held at WINDSOR CHAPEL (South Chapel) 3048 Dougall Ave., Windsor, ON (519) 253-7234 on Tuesday, April 11, 2023 from 1-5 p.m. and 6-9 p.m. Funeral services on Wednesday, April 12, 2023 at 10:15 a.m. from the funeral home, then to St. Peter's Maronite Church, 166 Tecumseh Rd. W. for funeral mass at 11 a.m. Interment to follow at Heavenly Rest Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in memory of Farid to The Hospice of Windsor. Online condolences and cherished memories may be shared with the family at www.windsorchapel.com
1700 Tecumseh Rd. East
Windsor, ON N8W 1C7
Phone: (519) 253-7234