Lillian Frances Sutton Anabtawi

Published 3:26 pm Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Lillian Frances Sutton Anabtawi was born in Crockett County Tennessee, on December 1, 1929.   She was the first child of Garland Sutton and Pauline Lewis. The oldest of ten children, 3lbs at birth she was the light of her mother and father’s life.  Upon her birth, her father proclaimed, “This little girl will wear nothing but silks and satins”. They moved to Jackson, Tennessee where she attended local schools, always top of her class. Education was a joy for Frances. Her favorite quote, which is inscribed under her photo in her high school graduating album, is: “I take all knowledge to be my province”. A motto she ascribed to each and every day of her long and fruitful life. She briefly studied law before finding her passion in the political arena. She was Campaign Manager for the successful election of Frank Clement, Governor of the State of Tennessee and remained as his assistant.  Local, state and national politics became her forte. In Nashville she met Dr. Isam N. Anabtawi who was doing his medical residency at Vanderbilt University where she was secretary to the dean of medicine. They were married in a civil ceremony on May 25th 1961.

They moved to Augusta, Georgia where two daughters and one son were born and then to Groves, Texas in 1969 to pursue with her husband, his surgical practice. Frances was Woman of The Year and longtime member of the Port Arthur Historical Society, Service League and Medical Auxiliary. She engaged herself in every conceivable civic, social, charitable and political endeavor possible. She was a born fundraiser who raised funds in large sums for many organizations and charities. She was a devoted wife to her husband, cardiovascular thoracic surgeon, Isam, who was the love of her life.  Frances was a loving wife, mother, grandmother, sister and friend who will be missed dearly.

She was preceded in death by her loving parents, Pauline & Garland Sutton and treasured brothers, Henry Von, Tex, and Bonny Ray Sutton. She is survived by her 6 brothers and sisters, Jerry Sutton, Joyce Sutton Price, Paul Sutton, Judy Sutton Baker, Cecil Sutton and Steve Sutton, who lovingly referred to her as simply “Sister”.

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She is survived by her husband, Dr. Isam N. Anabtawi, her three precious children who adored her, Rima Anabtawi, Karim Anabtawi, Nadia Lowery and her dear son in law, Norman Lowery.  She is also survived by her grandchildren Jeremiah Paskus, Noah Paskus, Andrew Gearen, Bianca Karim Anabtawi, Shawna Farrel and two great grandchildren.

She was devoted, beautiful, generous beyond measure, loving, resilient, funny and feisty. She relished life itself, endured hardship with grace, touched everything and everyone with kindness. May she walk always in beauty and may almighty God hold her in the palm of his loving hands for eternity.

A memorial visitation will be held on Monday, November 14, 2016 from 5 pm until 8 pm at the Clayton Thompson Funeral Home. In honoring her wishes, arrangements for cremation are entrusted to Clayton Thompson Funeral Directors in Groves.