Francis Achten
Francis Achten

Obituary of Francis Christian Achten

Beloved husband, father and grandfather, Francis Achten passed away peacefully June 2, in Kernersville N.C. He is survived by his wife of 50 years, Theresa “Terry”, their two sons, Christopher, (Sherri) and Patrick (Christine) as well as five grandsons, Christopher, Anthony, Timothy, Jaxson and Caleb.

Born December 12, 1944, in Basel, Switzerland to the late Herman Achten and Martha Eschle Achten, he was the youngest of three children. Francis was preceded in death by his parents, his brother, Peter Achten and sister, Heidy Rubin. 

Growing up Francis enjoyed equestrian horseback riding and skiing in the Swiss Alps. As he grew older playing soccer or “Futbol” became his passion, playing throughout high school and breaking his nose twice. For several years after high school Francis fulfilled his Swiss civic duty by serving as a soldier in the Swiss Army, and then went on to become an instructor in sharpshooting. Due to the fact that the Swiss military was not a year-round commitment, Francis was able to go to England where he continued his studies majoring in English and got his accreditation to teach English. 

In 1969, Francis began his career in finance and traveled to the U.S.A as a trainee for Swiss Bank. Living in Queens, N.Y. he met his future wife Terry as a result of a blind date set up by mutual friends. While living in Queens, NY, he grew to be a devoted and suffering fan of both the N.Y. Mets and the N.Y. Jets. Married in 1974, Francis and Terry then moved back to Switzerland while he continued to work for Swiss Bank. They resided in Switzerland until 1980 during which time both their sons were born.  Work brought him back to N.Y.C. where he began working on Wall Street for an international firm. 

Francis and Terry moved their young family to Westchester, N.Y. where they went on to raise both sons. In August 2000, Francis realized a long-time dream by becoming a U.S. citizen 

One of Francis’ greatest joys in life came later on when he became a grandfather. Affectionately named Papapa, the Swiss term for grandpa, he was born for the role. He was never short on finding ways to play with his grandchildren and supporting them in all they did.

A memorial service celebrating Francis’ life will be held at 11:00AM Saturday, June 8, 2024, at the Pierce-Jefferson Funeral Services Kernersville Chapel. 

Friends and family may offer online condolences at


Memorial Service

11:00 am
Saturday, June 8, 2024
Pierce-Jefferson Funeral Services Kernersville Chapel
213 West Mountain Street
Kernersville, North Carolina, United States
(336) 904-1053
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