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Frances Ellison Hamby
  • Ashley River Baptist Church
    1101 Savannah Highway
    Charleston, SC 29407

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J. Henry Stuhr West Ashley Chapel

3360 Glenn McConnell Parkway
Charleston, SC 29414
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Memories & Candles

“Dear Steve and Family, We are saddened to hear your mom, Mrs. Hamby, has passed. My sisters and our late mother, Sue Clink, have always had very...Read More »
1 of 9 | Posted by: Natalie Clink - Work

“Fran was such a gracious, beautiful lady. And she was a fabulous cook. Sending hugs to her family. ”
2 of 9 | Posted by: Barbara Kamp - Reston, VA

“The perfect lady, the perfect Navy Wife, the perfect caterer and a perfect friend. I will miss her. Rest In Peace dear Fran. ”
3 of 9 | Posted by: Barbara G. Epstein

“She set the standard for Charleston hospitality and catering. To this day, no party is complete without the recipes she created and perfected. May...Read More »
4 of 9 | Posted by: Roy Willey

“So sorry for your loss. She was a legend in catering, and a true lady, very nice. ”
5 of 9 | Posted by: Chris Bockman - Work

“I'm so sorry! She was a great lady. She set the bar high with catering in Charleston. Once a Hamby customer always a customer. I still pick up items...Read More »
6 of 9 | Posted by: Mary Murray - Charleston, SC

“Excellence is a word Mrs. Hamby always strived to achieve for her products and service. She always cared about her clients and tried to help them get...Read More »
7 of 9 | Posted by: Roy DeHaven - Charleston, SC

“Such wonderful memories of assisting this fine lady in her catering kitchen 25 yrs. ago, although it was short lived for me, i´ll always remember...Read More »
8 of 9 | Posted by: Chef Robert Dickson

“SORRY TO HEAR OF YOUR PASSING, GOD SPEED TO YOU. ”
9 of 9 | Posted by: BRUCE BOBO


Frances Ellison Hamby, 94, of Charleston, SC, widow of Thomas Severn Hamby, entered into eternal rest on Friday, December 10, 2021. Her graveside funeral service will be held Saturday, December 18, 2021 in Live Oak Memorial Gardens, 3093 Ashley River Rd, Charleston, at 12:00 pm. The family will receive friends prior to the service in the J. Henry Stuhr Inc., West Ashley Chapel, 3360 Glenn McConnell Pkwy, beginning at 10:00 am.

Fran was born February 4, 1927 in Williamston, SC, daughter and youngest of 11 children of the late Walter Ellison and Nannie Elrod Ellison. She was a graduate of Anderson College, now University, in Anderson, SC.

Fran was a long time member of Ashley River Baptist Church, where she served on numerous committees and directed the kindergarten for several years.

Fran is best known as the Founder of Hamby Catering and the author of the best selling cookbook, Catering to Charleston. From 1979 to 2009, Fran was the preeminent caterer in the South Carolina Lowcountry, and the recipient of numerous awards and accolades. Her greatest legacy, however, is her enduring love of her family and friends. Her's was truly a life of service to others.

Fran is survived by her daughter, Debra Hamby Izard ("Bru"); and her son, Steven T. Hamby (Cheral); as well as three grandchildren, Megan Hamby Chalmers (Sean), D. Austin Bersinger (Elizabeth), and Blake T. Bersinger (Allison); and six great grandchildren. In addition to her husband and parents, Fran was preceded in death by all of her siblings.

Memorial donations may be made to the Alzheimer's Association, 225 N. Michigan Ave., Fl. 17, Chicago, IL 60601; Ashley River Baptist Church, 1101 Savannah Hwy, Charleston, SC 29407; or to a charity of one's choice.