Frances Maureen Greathouse Profile Photo
1927 Frances 2007

Frances Maureen Greathouse

February 3, 1927 — September 24, 2007

Frances Maureen (Eden) Greathouse, 80, wife of the late C. Richard Greathouse, Jr. died at her home September 24, 2007 following a cancer-related illness. Her death falls four days before the fifth anniversary of the passing of her husband. She is noted for her lifetime dedication to the causes of Mentally Retarded and Developmentally Disabled Butler County children and adults, and her profound faith in God. She was a 50 year resident of Middletown, following her marriage to Dick Greathouse who was a direct line descendant of Stephen Vail who, along with Daniel Doty, founded Middletown. Her friendly manner and always-cheerful personality in the face of adversity made her loved by those who knew her.

Fran was a founder of Middletown’s Doty House, one of the nation’s first facilities designed for education, physical therapy and rehabilitation of any handicapped child in the area. The renovation of the original building was accomplished 100% by the volunteer work of Middletown craftsmen and community volunteers including electricians, plumbers, carpenters, masons, plasterers, painters and others. Doty house grew to become Abilities First Foundation, providing pediatric therapies, a transitions program, an early childhood learning center, employment services, an adult day program as well as Doty House and Hopewell residential facilities. She served on the boards of countless bodies dedicated to MR/DD causes.

As the mother of Charles Richard “Dick” Greathouse, III, she personally cared for a physically-challenged son for 54 years. Dick is doing an outstanding job of transitioning to a new home and level of independence thanks to his support team including Mr. Ron Smith, Dr. Kevin Strait, Peggy and Jim Jones, his two younger brothers and many more dedicated supporters. During Dick’s transition, information relating to his well-being can be accessed by emailing As Dick’s care was Fran’s life work, his transition and assembly of his support team are her crowning achievements.

To add perspective to Fran’s dedication, 54 years of care relates to over 100, 000 lifts of a full-grown man from wheelchair to bed and bath, etc., although to be fair, she only did about 70, 000 lifts before acquiring a hydraulic lift as she approached her seventies. Although only 5’ 3” tall, the expression “My mom can beat your dad at arm-wrestling” was occasionally heard in the halls of various Middletown schools in the 1960’s. She logged over 19, 000 days in a row providing meals, medication, bathing and moral support.

Fran was born on February 3rd of 1927 on a farm in Liberty, Kentucky on a very cold day. Her father was killed in a motorcycle accident while she was a little girl forcing her mother, Ruth, to move north to Cincinnati to find work to support her only child. Her maternal grandmother cared for her on the family farm while her mother established a career, becoming a “Rosy the Riveter”, producing airplane radios at the Crosley plant in support of the WWII effort. Rue Sebastian, a handsome and strong young man also from Kentucky married Ruth and cherished Fran as his own only child. The love and dedication of Rue and Ruth were the cornerstones of Fran’s upbringing and faith.

Upon graduation from North College Hill High School in Cincinnati, she attended Miami University and graduated in 1949 with a B.S. in Sociology. She met her college sweetheart on the first day of classes and spent the rest of her life with him, building friendships that would last the next half-century.

Spirituality was the very core of Fran Greathouse’s life and she studied the Bible and religious texts and prayed for hours each day. At the First Presbyterian Church, she served as a Deaconess, Sunday school teacher, participated regularly in study classes and Presbyweds a very long time ago.

Frances Greathouse is survived by sons Dick, Doug, Dan (Mary), and grandchildren Charles, Deanna, Katie, Paul, Sebastian, James, Peter, Sarah, Sophia, Emma and Gabriel Greathouse. She is also survived by her beloved In-laws Mary E. & John W. Montgomery who were steadfast companions and supporters as well as nephew and niece Jeff (Sheila) Hawley and Beth Ann Hawley. She deeply loved her many cousins and their families, spread throughout Ohio and Kentucky. Her cat, aptly named Lucky, as a result of being found orphaned and hungry while husband Dick was mowing the lawn, (with the cat narrowly escaping the mower blades) also survives her, albeit not known to be in the will.

Funeral Service will be held Friday, Sept 28, 2007 at 11:00 AM at the First Presbyterian Church of Middletown with Reverend L. Timothy Doty officiating. Visitation will be prior to the service from 10:00 – 11:00 AM. Interment follows at Woodside Cemetery.

Memorial contributions can be made to Abilities First Foundation, Inc., 4710 Timber Trail Dr., Middletown, Ohio 45044 or the First Presbyterian Church of Middletown, 2910 Central Ave., Middletown, OH 45044.

Funeral Home:
3805 Roosevelt Blvd.
Middletown, OH
US 45044

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Friday, September 28, 2007

10:00 - 11:00 am (Eastern time)

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Friday, September 28, 2007

Starts at 11:00 am (Eastern time)

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Friday, September 28, 2007

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