Lawrence Edward “Dick” Frederick

Lawrence Edward “Dick” Frederick, 98, of Falls City, Nebraska, passed away April 5, 2024 at Falls City. He was born June 4, 1925 near Arago, Richardson County, Nebraska, to William Charles and Ida Helen (Bauman) Frederick.

He attended country school through the elementary grades in what he often referred to as the “Dirty Thirties” and graduated from Sacred Heart High School in the spring of 1942, just a few months after Pearl Harbor. Although he wanted to join the military, he deferred enlistment for a year to help his dad on the farm.

When he was finally able to enlist, he was trained as a radioman in the U.S. Navy and assigned to the USS Tuscaloosa. Starting in February 1945, this ship and her six sister ships took part in the shore bombardment of Iwo Jima and Okinawa. The Tuscaloosa was considered a “charmed” ship. She was never damaged in battle while three of her sister ships were sunk and three were heavily damaged.

Although Dick never said much about the warfare he witnessed during intense battles, he often mentioned the dozens of places where his ship landed during the remainder of the Asiatic-Pacific campaign. Each place had an interesting story to go with its exotic name. As part of “Operation Magic Carpet” the Tuscaloosa transported more than 500 demobilized servicemen who were on their way home. The ship arrived in San Francisco in mid-January 1946. Even that city held an exotic experience for Dick: a performance at the Opera House.

After returning to civilian life, Dick married Anna Margaret “NiNi” Hall on August 7, 1947. He is survived by their two daughters, Mary Elizabeth Frederick of San Francisco, CA, and Christine Marie Brown (Randy) of Sandia Park, NM.

Dick’s ability to remember place names served him well during his long career as a postal clerk in Falls City, NE. Long after his retirement in 1988 he could still recite the names of those who had lived in any house he passed.

With two daughters attending Sacred Heart schools, he started volunteering to help with various activities, from score-keeping for basketball games to running the chain at football games to driving busloads of students several times a week to sports events and academic activities.

This second “career” was made possible by his work schedule whose days started at 5 a.m. and ended in the early afternoon. Fueled only by a quick lunch and a short nap, he was able to drive students safely to and from even faraway events that might end after midnight. After what could only be considered a long nap, he was up and ready to start a new day at the post office.

Dick was preceded in death by his wife, his parents and all of his siblings: Paul (who died as an infant); Grace Agnes (known as Sister Mary Anne after she joined the Ursuline Order); Ambrose Aloysius (known as “Jack”); Mildred Marie Carlisle; Irene Helen Austin; Mary Elizabeth McCurdy; Giles William; Virgil Joseph (known as “Shorty”); William John (who died less than a year old); Dolores Ann Austin, and Barbara Louise Wolfe.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Wednesday, April 10, 2024 at 10:00 AM at Sts. Peter and Paul Catholic Church with Father Jim Meysenberg as the presiding priest. Interment will be in Falls City Catholic Cemetery. Military graveside honors by Falls City Ceremonial Honor Guard.

A Parish Rosary will be recited on Tuesday at 7:00 PM at Dorr and Clark Funeral Home.

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