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1923 Frederick 2024

Frederick Norton

July 10, 1923 — May 28, 2024

Sebring

Frederick Homer Norton was born July 10, 1923, in Port Henry, NY, and passed away on May 28, 2024, at Crandall Medical Center, Sebring OH, surrounded by family. The son of Homer Jay and Sarah (Kimball) Norton, he grew up near Lake Champlain and the Canadian border.  He was very much “the self-made man” who came from humble roots.  Fred went to the first consolidated school in the United States, Chazy Central Rural School, built by a local multi-millionaire to provide a good education for the children in that impoverished area.

Fred served in both World War II (in the European Theater, 66th Division, Panther Unit) and in the Korean War. He was an Army Ranger, a sniper, a cartographer and a Master Sergeant.

Fred met his future wife, Mary, at the Chazy soda shop when they were 16 and 15 years old.  They dated until after WW II and married in 1946 as soon as Fred returned home. They had 62 wonderful years of marriage before Mary passed in 2008.

Fred put himself through college…Plattsburgh State, Carnegie Tech (now Carnegie Mellon in Pittsburgh) and finally Kent State.  His college years were interrupted by service to his country.  He graduated from Kent with degrees in engineering and architecture.

Goodyear Aerospace in Akron became his employer for well over thirty years.  He designed radar systems for planes and ships, defense missiles and many other classified items.  He was a talented artist, wood worker, carver, painter, needle worker, gardener, handyman.

Church was an important facet of Fred’s life as a member of United Methodist churches in Akron OH, Williamsburg VA and most recently, Alliance OH. For many years, he was a proud member of Masonic lodges in both Akron and Williamsburg.  He enjoyed a good round of golf with friends and family.

Fred and Mary have three children whom they raised in Cuyahoga Falls.  Camping, traveling, church, education, and artistic endeavors were important parts of their lives.

Mary and Fred moved to Williamsburg VA in 1977 so Fred could be Goodyear Aerospace’s liaison to the Naval Base in Yorktown VA.  They spent 25 glorious years there before they moved to Copeland Oaks, Sebring OH in 2002. They loved traveling to all parts of the USA, to Europe and especially to Fort Myers Beach FL.

Fred has been a survivor all his life, most recently dealing with 18 years of being “legally blind” due to age-related macular degeneration.  He continued to live courageously and independently for many years, making adjustments and accommodations.

Those left to cherish Fred’s legacy are his children, Kathryne  “Kay,” David, and John Jeffrey “Jeff”  (Toni), 13 grandchildren and 42 great-grandchildren.  Fred also leaves behind his dear companion of many years, Ruth Spalding.  In addition to his wife Mary, he was proceeded in death by his son-in-law Robert and his daughter-in-law Jennifer.

His family would like to thank the staffs of Crandall Medical Center and Aultman Alliance Hospice for their loving care at the end of Fred’s life.

Fred lived a long remarkable life, filled with service, purpose, wisdom, wit, spirit, and strength.  Continuing his generosity to others, he chose to donate his body to NEOMED in Rootstown OH for medical research.

Donations may be made to Union Avenue United Methodist Church, 1843 S. Union Ave., Alliance OH 44601 or to The Oaks Foundation, 715 S. Johnson Road, Sebring, OH 44672.  A family celebration of life will be held at a later date.

Friends and family may send condolences online at www.grfuneralhome.com (Gednetz-Ruzek-Brown Funeral Home).

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Frederick Norton, please visit our flower store.

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