Jennifer Franet

The loss of a family friend over Christmas affects us all as we mourn her passing and send our heartfelt sympathies and love to her family.


Jennifer Eve Franet
April 27, 1975 ~ Dec. 25, 2008 Resident of Arcata Former Resident of Pleasant Hill and Burlingame Our beloved Jennifer tragically passed away Christmas evening in a car accident in Mendocino County, CA. A beautiful spirit, Jennifer was born in Walnut Creek, CA and raised in the East Bay. She graduated from College Park High School in Pleasant Hill in 1993. She graduated with distinction from University of California, Berkeley in 2001 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in English. Jennifer was an extraordinary, loving, spirited, bright, affectionate, beautiful, courageous person … these words only begin to describe the wonderful woman that she was and always will be to those who loved and cherished her. Jennifer’s dearest love was to her children Zachary and Sage. Her passions were many: writing, reading, teaching, learning, music, meeting new people. She felt very strongly about helping those in need and had plans to start a non-profit organization to help underprivileged children in third world countries. Jennifer was a free spirit, a wild soul, and passionate about all that she did. While she was taken from us far too young, she was fortunate enough to have achieved her life’s ambition: she left the world a better place for being in it. She was a mother, a teacher, a writer, an environmentalist, and her amazing energy lit up any room she entered. From an early age, Jennifer was concerned about the earth and was captivated by the beauty of nature. She was a tireless advocate for the environment and single-handedly rescued more lost, sick, or injured critters than could fit in a small zoo. She finally found her home in the beauty of the redwood forest in Arcata. She spent endless hours hiking, exploring and feeding her soul. She was a strikingly beautiful child who grew into a woman more lovely for her amazing intellect and compassionate heart. She funnelled that beauty, and all the beauty she saw in the world into her writing. A published author, Jennifer had the power to captivate with her words. She used them to take us on emotional journeys of laughter and tears and to challenge us to explore the depths of human nature. Jennifer loved children. From an early age she worked with children with special needs and continued that passion into adulthood working as a teacher and job coach. In fact, Jennifer so loved children that she wanted to give the gift of parenthood to a couple unable to carry their own child by being their gestational surrogate. In October of 2005, Jennifer gave birth to a healthy baby boy. Perhaps the greatest gifts she gave the world were her children, Zachary and Sage. Jennifer loved her children more than anything else and felt a great responsibility for raising them to be good, caring, responsible people. While they are not yet adults, it is clear from all who know them that she has done just that. Jennifer Franet was a renaissance woman. She leaves in her a wake a trail of compassionate action, beautiful words and amazing human beings. She is a person whose inner beauty and passion for living was a brilliant light for us to follow. And while we mourn the loss of this light, we celebrate its burning on in the hearts of all of us forever changed by her love. Jennifer is survived by her son Zachary, daughter Sage, and surrogate son Miguel. Also survived by her mother Joan Franet, father Vanda Boutte III, ex-stepfather Lawrence Hornbeck, her sisters Julia Franet-Hornbeck and Rachael Franet-Hornbeck, her grandmothers Florence Franet and Barbara Johnson, her ex-partner Jenna Smith, her Aunts Diane Franet, Michelle Boutte-Burke; her Uncles Michael Franet (wife Kate), Ronald Boutte, Stephen Boutte, Jerard Boutte, David Keala, and many friends and relatives. She was preceded in death by her Grandfather Francis Franet, Grandmother Marylynn Hornbeck, Great Grandmother Florence Boggs, Great Grandmother Marjorie J. Stansbury, Great Grandparents Elizabeth & Clarence Cunningham, Great Aunt Bernice Franette Du Long, and Aunt Susan Franet. Jennifer was also survived her extended family and friends from many walks of life. Services and burial will be held on Sunday, January 4th at 1:00 p.m. at Fernwood Cemetery: 301 Tennessee Valley Rd., Mill Valley, CA 94941. All are welcome to attend. A trust fund for her children, Zachary and Sage, will be set up at a later date.

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3 Responses to Jennifer Franet

  1. Gina says:

    I was so blessed and grateful to know Jennifer. I was lucky to spend time with her and took this shot with my camera phone after we spent a few moments playing along the beach in Trinidad. She was so vibrant and happy that day! (as anyone who knows her, knows she often way) She was amazing and my very best friend. She will be deeply missed.
    Thank you for the loving tribute and showing more photos of her.
    With Peace and Blessings,


  2. Rachael says:

    I miss my sister dearly and will think of her often. She was an amazing person. Far too amazing to have been taken from this world at such a young age. I am still in denial that she has since been burried and I will never see my beautiful sister again. It is surreal. It feels like a nightmare. And all I want to do is to wake up from this nightmare. Love to you always, Jenny.
    Your baby sister, Rachael


  3. Prima says:

    We were very saddened by the news and hope that somehow Sage and Zack get this message. We were their pre-school teachers in Berkeley.

    Hi Sage,

    I’m hoping you’ll remember me–I was your pre-school teacher at Cedar Creek with Melissa. We were thinking of you yesterday because it was my daughter’s birthday and we remembered that it was your birthday too. So HAPPY (BELATED) BIRTHDAY In this day of technology, we thought we could “find” you on the web. What we found was the news of your mom’ terrible accident. We were so saddened by the news. Please know that you and Zack are in our thoughts. Please keep our email address, should you ever have a need to get in touch with us—even if it’s just to say hi, we’d love to hear from you. I hope you’re doing well.




    Happy Birthday to my favorite student (a day late!!!). Here’s my email address: Write soon and we’ll talk about art-



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