Our mother, Margaret Jean Francisco Steiner (Jean) passed peacefully in Delta, Utah, December 14, 2023. Mom was born to C “Frisco” and Opal Short Francisco in McGill Nevada.. She attended McGill Grade School and was a very proud McGill Tiger. She graduated from WPHS and married the love of her life, Gerald “Jerry” Steiner in 1959. For a short time mom lived in Southern California with dad’s sister as she awaited Dad’s return from his stint in the US Navy. She loved the beaches and returned on occasion.
Mom and Dad made their way back to Ely where they started a family and a long life together. Frances was the first to be born, followed by David and Theresa. Mom was a homemaker first but held a variety of jobs over time; she was always busy! Some of her notable positions were sales clerk at JC Penney, bookkeeper at Western Auto, parts person and pilot car driver at Harvey Young Company and parts person at E-Lee Ford. She was very proud to be one of the first few people hired to deliver UPS in White Pine County in 1975. Later she and Dad opened their store, Rail Place.
In addition to being our mom, she was the initial driving force behind Lil Girls Softball in the mid 70s, but her determination and drive for grass roots community service projects did not stop there. Mom, Dad, and many like-minded locals were in on the ground floor of what White Pine County knows as “The Ghost Train of Old Ely”. During this endeavor, mom opened the first gift shop in conjunction with the railroad, “Rail Place”. Mom and Dad dedicated countless hours creating unique railroad related memorabilia as well as volunteering with the Friends of Nevada Northern Railway, a group of volunteers who worked on the trains, provided tours and raised money towards the restoration of Engine 40, the Ghost Train of Old Ely, and continued preservation of the NNRY. It was with this group of “friends” that Mom and others produced a fund-raising book “Nevada Northern Railway and the Copper Camps of White Pine County”.
Besides Mom’s commitment to the future of the railroad, she was first and foremost committed to her family. Of course she loved Dad deeply. She also loved her children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren. Mom could be seen doing her signature “chicken dance” with the younger generation as well as regularly singing hits from the 1950s.
Mom leaves quite the legacy. After Dad passed in 1993, Mom became the maker of the rail items sold in her store. It was not wise to tell Mom that she couldn’t do something as she would usually prove you wrong.
Mom was preceded in death by her parents, husband Jerry, brother Donald Francisco, and good friend TJ Lani. Mom is survived by her children; Frances (Jeff), David (Jeannie), Theresa (Ben); grandchildren Chad, Ross, Kenny, David, Jennifer, Andy, Derek, Darleen, Nicholas, Gia, and Garrett. Additionally mom leaves many great grandchildren, great-great grandchildren; her sisters Elva Decker and Fern House, sister-in-law Annie Mathews as well as numerous nieces, nephews, cousins, extended family and friends. Mom was one to make friends anywhere she was.
Our family would like to thank the Millard Care and Rehabilitation home for the care, compassion and love they shared with our loved one.
A celebration of life will be held at a later date.