On February 21, 1951 I was born in Concord, NH, to
alcoholic parents. I was named Frances Irene, after an Aunt I never knew. My name means Freedom-Peaceful, which certainly
I was removed from my birth mother at age 14 months
for gross neglect and physical abuse and made a Ward of the Court in Merrimack County, NH. I was raised in six different
foster residences - most of which were OK. The residence I remained in for 12 years, from age 5 to age 17, was extremely
abusive; verbally, mentally, physically, emotionally, sexually, and spiritually.
I attended church, but was reminded that "God doesn't
love you. Your own parents don't love you. If they did you would be with them. If they don't love you, how
could Jesus love you. That's why you are here." You can see by my writing "they" were wrong! I don't
discuss those years as it is too painful, but, yes, I have written about them. And yes, Jesus loves us all.
I graduated with Honors from Pembroke Academy, Pembroke, NH in 1969. I was the
Circulation Editor and Assistant News Editor for the highschool newspaper, The Spartan Scroll. I won 3rd place in the
Annual Talent Show (doing a Richard Pryor skit) and 1st Place in the Speech Contest! I was a member of the Chorus and
Drama Club, and was always decorating highschool hallways with my signs or art! Fun times! I was chosen to represent
my highschool in the Junior Miss Pageant in New Hampshire, 1968, but had to resign the competition due to expectations at
the foster residence I was in at the time.
I will always consider Curtis and Evelyn Stockford as my parents. They
were excellent folks who set me on the right path. But my dearest parent ever is my stepdad, James Shea. Rest
his soul - he journeyed to rest - but of all my "dads" I loved him BEST! He could challenge your wits with decades of
National Geographic that he read from cover to cover! And he would remember every story!
I wrote a beautiful poem for him about saving a place at Niagara Falls, because
it was his favorite place to view the Falls. I recited the poem to him over the phone shortly before he died.
Miss you DAD...
I attended White Pine's College, Chester, NH, in 1975-76, studying photo/journalism. I attended Niagara County Community College, 1985-87, majoring in Communications and Media Arts,
with an Advertising minor. My college years were some of the best - great people, fun times and lots of creative energy
My grown children are Candace Marie, age 36 and Damian Andrew Judson, age 31.
I have one grand daughter, Quinn Cydney, 13 and a grandson, Talan Jai, 1. They all live in Southern California which
is why I relocated here.
My husband is Specialist Anthony Joseph Tolfa. Anthony served with
the USMC, US Army, NY Air National Guard and NY Army National Guard. He completed 20 years of military service in 2004.
I have survived cancer twice, Cervical Cancer in 1985 and Ovarian Cancer in
2001. From 1963-1967 I battled a very stubborn case of osteomyelitis in my left heel. It was corrected with
surgery. I am disabled with Fibromyalgia Syndrome and full body arthritis. I still present my poetry at readings
in the Western New York area.
Update 2007: We now reside in the beautiful city of Oceanside, CA.
Anthony is a Security Officer Supervisor with Legacy Security System. He participated (June 4, 2006) with the arrest
of a career criminal wanted by America's Most Wanted, http://www.AMW.com James McDowell - Anthony assisted Carlsbad, CA Police with the arrest of McDowell at the Motel 6 in Carlsbad, where
Anthony was a Security Guard. See the story at the AMW website!
Update 2006- I am Blessed with the production of six poems into beautifully
inspirational songs by Executive Producer Tom Hartman of HillTop Records in Hollywood, CA.
The songs are "HELP EACH OTHER THROUGH" and "LOVE'S GOLDEN LIGHT" on the AMERICA
CD - #ACD-390.
"FOR YOUR SAFE RETURN" and "WALK TOWARD THE LIGHT" on the COLOR ME COUNTRY CD
"REST, MY WEARY SOLDIER FRIEND" and "SHARE THE SUNSHINE" on the LAND THAT I
LOVE CD - #LLC-113.
I will always stand and deliver - even if it is from a wheelchair! I wrote
this 2 years ago - I rarely use a wheelchair now, 2006! - although I do use a very unusual hand-beaded cane to balance
my Fibromyalgia/Arthritis legs' wobble!
To all who journey through this site, be strong in your hearts, keep the Faith,
and sometimes, when absolutely necessary, LET IT ALL GO! Always be kind to yourself!
Update 2007: May 2, 2007 my birth mother Merle Kathleen, journey to rest.
Before she died we had several conversations over the phone. I had the chance to forgive her and tell her I love her.
One of the last things she said to me is, "Let's let bygones be bygones. I love you dear." It was important to
both of us to share those conversations. Rest in Peace, Mother. Now you know the TRUTH.