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Frances P. Chmelewski

7/23/1961 - 6/9/2018
Service Details
Saturday June 23, 2018 1:00 p.m. Concert Hall Jerilyn S. McIntyre Music Building CWU Campus, Ellensburg
Obituary
Frances Paddack Chmelewski (née Wagner) passed away on June 9, 2018 at the age of 56. A memorial service will be held at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, June 23 in the concert hall of the Jerilyn S. McIntyre Music Building on the Central Washington University campus.

Fran, as she was known to friends, was born in Cincinnati, Ohio on July 23, 1961 to Marjorie and Edward Wagner III. After attending Indian Hill High School, she went on to receive a B.A. in Political Science from Tufts University, graduating in 1983. She spent her junior year studying at the Institute of Political Science (Sciences Po) in Paris, France. Her time abroad cemented her love of travel and her affinity for adventure. She spent the years after her college graduation working at the United Nations Association of Greater Boston.

Fran later moved to Washington State to attend the University of Puget Sound Law School, where she met her husband, Mark and many of her lifelong friends. She graduated from law school in 1989 and began working with the Seattle City Prosecutor’s Office shortly thereafter. Fran then decided to move to Ellensburg with Mark in 1991 “for one year, at the most.” One year turned into 27 years, as Ellensburg ultimately became the home where they chose to raise their son, Stephen.

Her time in Ellensburg was defined by her commitment to public service. While living in Kittitas County, Fran served as a public defender, Ellensburg’s City Prosecuting Attorney, and a Special Assistant Attorney General working on behalf of Child Protective Services. The highlight of her professional career, however, was the time in which she served as a Superior Court Judge, a position that she held from 2011 to 2017. Outside of work, Fran loved to be active outdoors and was especially fond of hiking the Manastash Ridge. She also had a flair for music and could often be found playing piano at home or seeking out the nearest drumming circle. Fran’s spirit is characterized by a lust for life, a deep intellectual curiosity, an unrivaled sense of humor, and her unbounding love for her family, friends, and career.

Fran will be dearly missed by her husband Mark, son Stephen, sister Emily, loving brothers- and sisters-in-law, many adoring nieces and nephews, and countless cousins, friends and colleagues.

Memorial contributions in Fran’s honor are suggested to a charity or organization that reminds you of Fran. Steward & Williams Funeral Home and Crematory of Ellensburg has been entrusted with caring for Fran’s arrangements. Online condolences may be shared directly with the family at www.ourfranmemories.com
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