Fred and my father met in elementary school. Fred and his beautiful wife, Charlotte, fell in love at the University of Washington, and are two of my parents' dearest friends. We came to know them when our children were in elementary school, and I will give you a few examples of why I love them both so much.
|Dad & Fred in the desert|
|David & Katie in the pool at TVC|
Fred & Charlotte are fun, intelligent, warm and adventurous. They have taken some wonderful guided trips with my parents and other friends. Some of their best stories come from the Stan Boreson Tours that they took together. We loved having them to our house for visits, sharing dinner at Burrata Bistro or a clam-feed on our deck, and they always appreciated a gift of lefse from our local Norwegian bakery (Charlotte is of Norwegian heritage).
Fred has a very dry sense of humor. He and my father are hilarious together, because my dad is theatrical and Fred is understated. Fred has a way of sputtering, especially in response to my father's more dramatic story-telling. We loved hearing Fred's gentle rumblings as he teased my dad. "Unbelievable!" was often all he had to say, but it was the way he said it that made it work.
|Dad & Fred|
Fred was a hugger and kisser whenever we would get together. I will miss his loving greetings. He was always perfectly dressed and groomed, a very dapper and handsome man. He was a Marine who had been wounded three times in World War II, and still had his helmet with the hole in it. He was modest, but when we asked to see the helmet (and his Purple Heart medal), he showed them to us. It is impressive, as is his service record.
Fred and Charlotte came to the hospital to visit us when Katie was sick, and brought a book for her. They have been the most loyal, thoughtful, affectionate and sympathetic friends to my parents, coming all the way from Seattle to attend Katie's memorial service. They have encouraged us and supported our efforts in Katie's Endowment for Cancer Research. They have been kind, generous, always interested in David and in us. They are like extended family...and I feel as if my uncle has passed away.
Charlotte has asked that donations in Fred's memory go to either the Ryther Child Center or the Katie Gerstenberger Endowment for Cancer Research at Seattle Children's Hospital. We are overwhelmed with gratitude to her for thinking of the endowment, particularly at this painful time. Please remember our dear friend Fred and his family in your thoughts and prayers.