Frances Lyman

Service Information

2:00 pm
Saturday, July 20, 2013
Congregational Church of South Glastonbury
16 High St. South
Glastonbury, Connecticut, United States

Obituary of Frances Lyman

Frances Needham Lyman, age 95, beloved wife of Melville Henry Lyman, Jr. (deceased), died July 2, 2013. Born December 29, 1917, in New Rochelle, NY, she was the daughter of Jeanette and Benjamin Needham. She lived for many years in Ledgewood, NJ, moving to Glastonbury, CT, in 1998. She was active her entire life in church work first in the Presbyterian denomination, and then, in her latter years, in the United Church of Christ. In 1983, she was elected Moderator of the Newton Presbytery in New Jersey, the first woman to hold the position. Twice she was a representative to the national meetings of the Presbyterian Women's Organization held at Purdue University. As an elder of longstanding, she helped guide the lives of the congregations in which she served. She was a Sunday school teacher and Bible study leader for over 60 years. She also served on the Missions Board of the Congregational Church in South Glastonbury. Frances was very active in historical societies both in Ledgewood and in Glastonbury where she served as a docent at the Welles-Shipman-Ward House, taking pleasure in leading school groups through the historic home. Frequently, she donned period dress and spoke in the first person to the children, making history come alive for them. Frances was well known for her story-telling. She also lectured on subjects ranging from women going west on the wagon trains in the 19th century, to the life of Susanna Wesley, the wife of John Wesley, founder of the Methodist church. She leaves a sister, Mary Louise Lundquist, of Whippany, NJ, and a brother Robert Needham, of Columbus, OH. She also leaves six children: Melville H. Lyman, III, James D. Lyman, Kathleen L. Housley, Stuart D. Lyman, John C. Lyman, and Elizabeth A. Lyman; her daughters-in-law and son-in-law: Elizabeth Lyman, Leslie Lyman, Peggy Lyman, Laura Lyman, and Timothy Housley; eight grandchildren: Christopher Lyman, Pamela Stark, Jeffrey Lyman, Marc Housley, William Housley, Matthew Lyman, Joshua Lyman, Benjamin Brishcar; and thirteen great-grandchildren. A memorial service will be held at the Congregational Church in South Glastonbury at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday. July 20. There are no calling hours. Burial will be in Arlington Cemetery, Washington D.C., alongside her husband, a World War II veteran who held the rank of Commander in the Navy. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to the Maine Seacoast Mission, 127 West Street, Bar Harbor, ME 04609. For online condolences please visit
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