Francine Felt Louise Potter was born September 30th, 1937, to Jerda Aurelia Peterson Felt and Richard Norman Felt. She passed away without suffering on New Years Morning, January 1st, 2024. Francine is one of the elite warriors in the battle for free agency. As a young girl she became curious about everything in life. There was not a stone that she did not want turned over. Her creativity, talent, and “out of the box” thinking, was ever-present and constantly affected, profoundly, every person with whom she became acquainted.
Francine loved deeply. Her empathy was unmatched when in full bloom. She had a gift of feeling people’s pain, and sorrow, and she wanted to help all those that she saw who had pain. Also, like most of us, she suffered her fair share of pain in life. But she fought this pain as valiantly as a child of God might.
She was an attentive and bright child who kept her parents on their toes. She and her older sister Marylin Anderson, learned to play the violin as young girls. They both excelled greatly. Francine was very talented, but worked extremely hard at becoming the best violinist she could be.
While attaining a bachelor’s degree from the University of Utah to become a music teacher with a minor in French, Francine was nominated by a fraternity to become Miss University of Utah, which eventually led to her winning and becoming Miss Utah in 1957. She then went on to compete in the Miss America pageant. As a contestant of intense depth and character, her authenticity left a wonderfully unique impression on those around her. She was awarded the Most Talented Musician, by playing Kreisler’s, “Tambourine Chinois” on the violin. Her talent was extraordinary.
As talented as she was, she also learned to weather the storms of life. She battled through life courageously and nobly. Always an active member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, she served in many capacities and was extremely loyal. However, she was not self-righteous and when it came down to it, she was forward-thinking and intentionally kind towards all people.
In 1962 she married Brent Elliot Heninger. She and Brent loved each other very much. While married, Francine was working as a music teacher. Being epically talented and creative she invented the “Scale-0-Phone”. This xylophone like creation, had notes of the staff painted on them and she wrote a music book to go with it, to teach children how to read music. The school districts went crazy for this tool, and it helped untold numbers of kids learn to read music. She also invented other creations, like the “Mini Mop”, and “Ear-replaceables”.
Brent and Francine divorced in 1974. Francine played violin for the Utah Symphony to help support her family. She taught her five kids to fish during this time. She also showed them how to spy on fellow fishermen and extract information on what was working best. She often cast her bait as close to the other bobbers as
God gave us music that we might pray without words. possible, many times crossing their lines. But she usually caught her limit of fish!
Francine married George John Potter in 1977. He had already raised 5 kids of his own and took on five more. She shared countless rich memories with “Dad” Potter and his wonderful kids and grandkids.
Francine played for the Utah Symphony Under Maurice Abravanel and retired after 16 years. In her life, Francine composed a musical, “Matchkeeper”, countless compositions, arrangements, and played as concert mistress for the Paradigm Orchestra under Joel Rosenberg up until her early 80s. For decades she and her sister Marilyn have brightened up the world with their violin music.
Francine is preceded in death by her parents, Richard Norman Felt and Jerda Aurelia Peterson Felt, her Husband, George Lund Potter, stepdaughter Tony Noh, step grand-daughter Krista Kirsch, and 1st husband Brent Elliot Heninger. She is survived by her loving sister Marilyn Anderson, five biological children Sherilyn Greene (John Greene), Brent David Heninger (Tammy Heninger), Johnny Elliot Heninger (Anka), Rick Van Heninger (Ann Heninger), Joseph Brian Heninger (Jennifer Marie Heninger), and 4 stepchildren David Potter, Denise Kirsch, Dorothy Day (David Day), Tammy Hansen (Ken Hansen) and a combined number of around 100 grandchildren and great grandchildren.
Viewing will be on Friday January 12, 2024, from 6 to 8 PM at 3862 E. Oakview Dr. Memorial Services to be held on Saturday, January 13, 2024, at 3862 E. Oakview Dr.
Mom, Nana, Francine, we LOVE you to the ends of the earth!
May peace be with you and your sweet soul.
See Dignity memorial for future posts.
Life Story Info
Religion and Beliefs
- Utah Symphony
Bachelor'sU of U