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01/11/09 06:46 AM

Frances Stahlberger, retired librarian, volunteer

March 2, 1926 — Dec. 19, 2008

Frances Stahlberger, a retired librarian who actively served the community, died Dec. 19, 2008, in Beechwood Nursing Home, Getzville. She was 82.

Born Frances Alburn in Buffalo, she was the valedictorian of her graduating class at Mount St. Mary Academy in the Town of Tonawanda and earned a teaching degree from D’Youville College. Her first teaching job was in a one-room school house in Schooleys Mountain, N. J.

After earning a second master’s degree from the University of Buffalo, Mrs. Stahlberger went to work as a librarian at the Northwest Branch of the Erie County library system.

She later worked approximately 25 years as a librarian for the Grand Island Central School District, at the Charlotte Sidway and William Kaegebein elementary schools. She retired in 1989.

While vacationing in Alaska during three successive years, she helped establish a library outside Fairbanks.

In retirement, Mrs. Stahlberger was an active volunteer for Hospice Buffalo, where she read to patients. She was honored as the organization’s Volunteer of the Year in 1991.

She also was a volunteer with Niagara Frontier Radio Reading Service for the blind.

Mrs. Stahlberger had formed a Brownie troop at St. Mary’s School in Swormville, and served as a Eucharistic minister and lector at St. Pius X Church in Getzville, where she was a parishioner. She ministered at Millard Fillmore Hospital and to shut-ins in her neighborhood.

Mrs. Stahlberger also had served as an usher for Studio Arena Theatre and made annual trips to the Stratford Festival and to Artpark. She enjoyed travel.

Her first husband, Walter P. Frank, died in 1975.

Survivors include her husband, John C.; two sons, Sean and Brian Frank; and two daughters, Melanie Emillani and Michele Cellino.

Mrs. Stahlberger donated her body to UB’s Medical School, and her hair was donated to Locks of Love.

A memorial service will be scheduled in March.