Francis Moritz, 78, of Windsor, Missouri died Wednesday morning, February 6, 2019, surrounded by family.
He was born April 29, 1940, in Dora, Mo., the son of George Moritz and Mary (Steaker) Moritz. On May 26, 1962, in Mountain Grove, Mo., he married Neva LaVelle Gourley and she preceded him in death on January 7, 2018.
Francis graduated from Dora High School and then worked for the shoe factory in Mountain Grove. He served in the United States Army from 1963 to 1965. After his discharge, he worked for Ford Motor Company in Kansas City for a time and then drove a school bus at Fort Leonard Wood. He and LaVelle moved to Windsor with their two daughters, Deneen and Missy, in 1970 and he began work as a carpenter with Civil Service at Whiteman Air Force Base. During his time at Whiteman he expanded his work beyond general carpentry to include locksmith training. He also helped several area farmers including Jack Hunt, Bill and Larry Hamilton and Rob Longan. Retiring in 2000, Francis drove a bus for the Windsor School District until 2010.
Never one to sit still, Francis loved being behind the wheel. Volunteering to plow snow, helping drive tractors and trucks on the farm, and driving the school bus were jobs he enjoyed. He was a member of St. Bartholomew Catholic Church in Windsor and helped with groundskeeping and maintenance at the church. He was a member of the former Windsor Fire Department (now Windsor 4-County Rural Fire Department).
Survivors include 2 daughters, Deneen Girgin and her husband Aydogan, and Melissa “Missy” Moritz, all of Windsor; 2 granddaughters, Ashley Girgin and Autumn Girgin, both of Springfield, Mo.; 2 brothers John Moritz and his wife Wanda, Ozark, Mo., and Philip Moritz and his wife Linda, Ashland, Mo.; and numerous nephews, nieces, great-nephews, great-nieces and 1 great-great-niece. In addition to his wife LaVelle, he was preceded in death by his parents and a sister, Susie Lawson and her husband Dale.
Mass of Christian Burial will be 10:00 a.m. Monday, February 11, 2019, at the St. Bartholomew Catholic Church, Windsor. Burial will be in the Laurel Oak Cemetery, Windsor. The family will receive friends from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. Sunday afternoon, February 10, at the Hadley Funeral Home, Windsor. The family suggests contributions to the St. Bartholomew Catholic Church or Heartland Hospice in care of the funeral home.