William Wallace Francis

William Wallace Francis

William Wallace Francis, 89, died Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2019, of heart failure.

“Wally” was born March 16, 1930, son of Charles T. Francis and Eleanor Bell Francis. He graduated from Swarthmore College, served in the U.S. Navy as an ensign and earned a degree from Columbia University Graduate School.

He had a long career at the U.S. State Department, heading the Information Systems Office.

He met Mary Rae Law, or “Mamie,” as she was known to her friends, at Swarthmore College, and they married in 1952. They had five children: Jeffrey James, Thomas Andrew, Lynn Elliot, Nicholas Alexander and Daniel Gregory. His youngest son, Danny, died at the age of 10 from leukemia.

Wally and Mamie lived a vigorous and happy life at their home in Maryland before Mamie died of cancer in 2003. Wally spent his remaining years living part-time in New Hampshire, bringing wit, intelligence and hard work to bear on many projects here, the conservation of forested land to protect the New Hampshire watershed chief among them.

He is survived by four children, eight grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.

The family will hold a memorial service in the summer of 2020.

The Harris Center for Conservation Education at 83 King’s Highway, Hancock 03449 is accepting donations in his name.