Jeanette M. Franzen

Oct. 8, 1950 – May 4, 2021


Jeanette Marie (Coffey) Franzen was born in Friend to Leonard and Reta Mae Coffey on Oct. 8, 1950. She passed away at Bryan West Hospital in Lincoln on May 4, 2021. Jeanette was the fourth of five children and loved all her siblings more than life itself. She graduated in 1969 from Exeter High School. Raymond and Jeanette were married on June 22, 1973, and would have celebrated 48 years together this June.

Together, Jeanette and Raymond raised three daughters, Brenda Ann, Denise Marie and Corinne Elizabeth. Jeanette spent the majority of her life being a homemaker and also did babysitting in her home for many years. Those children are now grown adults, and continue to have fond memories from Jeanette’s house to this day. Jeanette also spent more than 20 years working at Gator’s Pub in Exeter. She made many lifelong friends while working there. Jeanette and Raymond enjoyed many fun and memorable trips while married, some top picks were an Alaskan cruise, Hawaii, New York and Branson. The length of the trip was never an issue as Jeanette also enjoyed frequent road trips which often were with extended family or close friends. Another memorable trip for her was her 60th birthday trip to Las Vegas with her three daughters and her sister. If any of these places included a slot machine that made the trip even better for her. She was a lifelong member of the St. Stephens Catholic Church and an active member of the American Legion Auxiliary in Exeter. Jeanette was very fond of angels, and her collection multiplied over the years. She also thoroughly enjoyed playing cards, both 5 and 10-point pitch were her favorites to play. Many fond memories of card games will be cherished by both family and friends.

Outside of her daughters, her pride and joy were her six grandchildren, five grandsons and one grand-daughter. She enjoyed the time she spent with her grandchildren and enjoyed watching them grow, attending their activities and keeping in contact with them with the wonderful technology of texting and Facetiming. Our dear mother surprised all of us when she embraced the use of Facebook and really came to enjoy using it. Jeanette was also promoted to great-grandmother in December of 2019, when her first great-granddaughter Emmarie arrived. She also was looking forward to the arrival of her second great granddaughter due in August 2021. In her years of retirement, she was a devoted and dedicated caregiver of her own mother and visited her faithfully. Jeanette will be fondly remembered for her smile and her ability to have a fun time with family and friends. She also took great pride in helping and taking care of others whenever she had an opportunity.

All the angels in Heaven have welcomed her with open arms.

Jeanette was preceded in death by her parents, Leonard and Reta Mae Coffey; her in-laws, Arnold and Rose Franzen; brothers, Richard Coffey and John Coffey; brother-in-law, Ernest Christensen; sister and brother-in-laws, Ruth and Jim Kellum,;and brother-in-law Dencil Janes.

She is survived by husband, Raymond Franzen, Exeter; daughters, Brenda (Mike) Motis of Geneva, Denise (Pericles) Gabriele of Pennsylvania, Corinne (Paul) Downey of Omaha; grandchildren, Thane (Megan) Motis, Caroline, Gatlin and Travien Motis, Dante and John Downey; and great-granddaughter, Emmarie Motis; sister, Sylvia Christensen, Columbus; brother, Bob (Peg) Coffey, Grand Island; sisters-in-law, Barbara Coffey, Beaver Crossing, Shirley Janes, Exeter, Anna Griese, Washington State, Frances Nelson, Valparaiso, Sandi (Ron) Jones, Lincoln; brother-in-law, Leonard (Don) Franzen, California. She is also survived by a host of nieces and nephews and many cousins and other extended family.

A Mass of Christian Burial for Jeanette was May 10 at St. Stephen Catholic Church in Exeter with a graveside service at the Exeter Cemetery. Memorial contributions are suggested to St. Stephen Catholic Church or Exeter American Legion. Condolences may be left for the family at


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