Fred Elmo Larson II, “Freddie”, 72, of Surprise, Ariz. passed away Friday, Oct. 14, from lung disease. His humor never wavered during his illness and everyone that cared for him during this time enjoyed his sweet nature and sense of humor. Fred was a caring and loving husband, partner, father, grandfather, brother, teacher and friend to many.
He is survived by his PARTNER, Kathleen Wardle of Surprise, Ariz.; CHILDREN Michelle Vernon of Vancouver, Wash.; Cheryl Payton (Bryce) of Camas, Wash.; SISTERS Linda Moses (Bill) of Old Town, Fla.; Mary Hudak (Doug) of Marblehead; Carol Larson Sweeney of Tampa, Fla. and Rebecca J Evans (deceased) of Tampa, Fla.; BROTHERS Michael Ohlemacher of Old Town, Fla.; Matthew Larson (Rebecca) of Tampa, Fla.; NIECE Heather Ohlemacher, Sandusky; NEPHEW Gary Larson of Sandusky; GRANDCHILDREN Dylan and Owen Vernon; and Lillian and William Payton.
Fred was born to Fred Sr. and Phyllis Reed Larson on April 28, 1950, in New Albany, Ind., and later moved to Port Clinton to finish his high school years. He was an accomplished athlete with a passion and talent for basketball which took him on a full ride scholarship to Montana State University – Northern in Havre, Mont. Following graduation from college, he began his teaching career and retired from Huntley Project High School in Worden, Mont. as a biology teacher. In addition, he taught Drivers Ed, PE coach, basketball coach, referee for basketball, and managed a public pool during the summer months while residing in Billings, Mont. He married Marlene Althoff in 1977 and they had two daughters in 1978 and 1979, Michelle and Cheryl.
Following retirement, he moved to the Pacific Northwest where he met his longtime partner Kathy Wardle of 15 years. They moved to Arizona in 2012 where he was able to enjoy his love of golf and traveling.
Fred was known not only for his intelligence but for his witty sense of humor, great friendships, mentorships – he truly touched the lives of many. His passion was teaching illustrated by his students and colleagues who have fond memories of him.
A public celebration of life and spreading of ashes, will be held in Washington state where Fred’s children and grandchildren reside.