Waldoboro — A lone figure being followed by the big, black dog, Mister, can no longer be found walking his blueberry fields in the early morning mist. Francis Greenwood Cross has parted from our world on Aug. 28, 2012, and wanders now with God. Knowing Francis, we are guessing that they are having some deep and long conversations.
Francis was born in Orneville, Maine, on July 22, 1936, to William and Violet Cross. He graduated from Milo High School in 1955, and then went on to receive his degree in Science Education from the University of Maine. After graduating, he found himself on the coast of Maine for his first teaching job at Waldoboro High School. It is here that he would meet the wife he cherished, Patricia Orff, with whom he spent the next 52 years.
During his tenure at RSU 40 from 1959 to 1996, Francis was a science teacher, the head of the science department, Director of Adult Education, and the assistant principal of Medomak Valley High School for 27 years until his retirement. He coached boys’ junior varsity basketball at Waldoboro H.S. and girls‘ varsity softball and basketball at Medomak Valley. He was also a proud member of the Heart Team. Even after retirement, Francis remained invested in the school system he had given so many years to by serving multiple terms on the school board. His passion was for kids; his goal was to make a difference in their lives.
Francis was a man of deep faith who made every effort to live for Christ every day. He was a lay speaker for the Methodist Church and served as a Trustee for the First Baptist Church of Waldoboro, as well as in his last years being in charge of the grounds and buildings. He has been an active member and fixture of the First Baptist Church for 42 years.
Above all, Francis loved his family. He unselfishly sacrificed his needs throughout his life to be sure that the needs of his family were met. He loved and adored his wife and daughters, and found utmost joy and pride in his grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Francis did not travel far from the Cross Compound where his most important treasures surrounded him.
His parents, sister, Maxine Bean, and brother, Albert Cross, predecease him.
He is survived by his wife, Patricia; daughter Elaine Baxley and her husband, Ron, of Waldoboro; daughter Michelle Wagstaff and her husband, Peter, of Waldorf, MD; daughter Jennifer Goode of Waldoboro; granddaughters Leslie Pratt and Kristine Wagstaff; grandson William Pratt and his wife, April; grandson Ian Goode; great grandson Julian; step great grandchildren, Katie and Tommy; sister Amy Nichols and her husband, Wilbur, of Milo, ME; sister Shirley Hutchinson and her husband, Fred, of Pawley’s Island, S.C.; nephew Charles Flint and his wife, Celeste, of Waldoboro; and many nieces, nephews, and friends.
Francis was in education for 37 years, but his gift for teaching went beyond those years and beyond the walls of any building. He taught all of us - family, friends, colleagues, students, even strangers - how to be a man of honor and grace.
Moxie in hand - Here’s to you!
We would love to hear your stories and memories of Francis. Please share them with the family at franciscross.wordpress.com or email them to firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also share your condolences with the family by visiting www.hallfuneralhomes.com.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to:
The Francis G. Cross Fund to support RSU 40/ SAD 40 educational programming. Make checks payable to RSU 40/ SAD 40 and indicate on the memo line the Fund. Mail checks to: RSU 40/ SAD 40, Attn: Francis G. Cross Fund, P.O. Box 701, Union, ME 04862.
Gibson Pavilion, Maine Medical Center, c/o The Development Dept., 22 Bramhall Street, Portland, ME 04102. Indicate on the check that it is in memory of Francis Cross.
A Celebration Service will be held for Francis Cross at the First Baptist Church in Waldoboro on Sept. 22 at 11 a.m. with reception following until 2 p.m. The service will be streamed live at http://www.fbcwaldoboro.org/, if you are unable to attend.
Services are entrusted to Hall Funeral Home and Cremation Service, 949 Main Street, Waldoboro.