Fredrick George Kaiser
May 18, 1943 – May 21, 2020
Fredrick George Kaiser (LtC, ret.), 77, a long-time resident of Quinton, went to join his beloved wife on Thursday, May 21, at Memorial Regional Medical Center. His son and daughter were with him.
Fred was born in 1943 in Ilwaco, WA to Fredrick and Mildred Kaiser. He was the older of two sons. Fred married Jerri Rich in 1966, and was drafted for Vietnam almost immediately afterwards. The Army quickly recognized his leadership abilities and sent him to Officer Candidate School. After finishing OCS, he chose the highest-paid specialty: Forward Observer for the Field Artillery. He didn’t realize until later that the reason it paid well was that it was so dangerous! Fred served in the U.S. Army for twenty years with great distinction. He earned many decorations, including the Silver Star and Bronze Star for valor and the Purple Heart (twice) for being wounded in action. Fred won the Silver Star by saving his infantry platoon from a Viet Cong ambush after having been wounded himself. He single-handedly held off the enemy and called in artillery fire on his own position.
Fred served in Vietnam, Korea, and Germany, as well as in Oklahoma, Nebraska, Virginia, Kansas, Washington and California. While in the Army, he earned a BS in psychology from the University of Nebraska (Omaha) and an MA in Human Resources from George Washington University. Upon Fred’s military retirement in 1986, he and Jerri moved to Springfield, VA, from which he worked as a defense contractor until 2000. They then moved to Quinton, where Fred spent his retirement spoiling his grandchildren, watching John Wayne movies, smoking the world’s best ribs, and reading vast quantities of military science fiction and history.
Fred knew how to fix everything and always had useful advice. He was brave, tough, stubborn, a wonderful public speaker, a gifted woodworker, an incredible shot, a passionate debater (he would always say that he loved us, even if we were wrong!), a good sport, and a creator of pithy sayings that stuck with his listeners. He had a wicked sense of humor and loved a good joke, even at his own expense. He made sure his family knew the importance of patriotism, integrity and a good handshake.
Everyone who knew Fred and Jerri benefited from their generosity and hospitality. Fred was a devoted husband and loving father, grandfather, father-in-law, brother and friend. He is survived by his daughter, Kelly (Dan); his son, Jason (Meredith); five grandchildren: Evan, Analiese, Ames, Elizabeth (Joshua) and Stephen; and his brother, Kirk (Marilyn) . A private service will be held at Christ Presbyterian Church and will be livestreamed on Friday, May 29 at 11 a.m. and can be watched at https://www.facebook.com/NelsenFuneral/. Interment for Fred and Jerri will be in Arlington Cemetery at a future date. Memorial gifts may be made to the church.
Decorations: Silver Star; Bronze Star; Purple Heart; Meritorious Service Medal; Army Commendation Medal; Valorous Unit Award; National Defense Service Medal; Vietnam Service Medal; Vietnam Campaign Medal; Army Service Ribbon; Overseas Service Ribbon; Oversea Service Bars (2); Gallantry Cross Unit Citation with Palm; Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry with Palm; Sharpshooter Qualification Badge (M-16); Navy Commendation Medal
No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.
Fredrick George Kaiser
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May 29, 2020
What a wonderful man your father was. My condolences to you and your family.
May 29, 2020
Fritzs as called him is my cousin he was the same age as my brother who passed away 20 years ago. When we were growing up our two families were always together a lot. We went camping at brightenbush out of detroit dam. W e also camped most every last weekend of the summer at lost lake on the north side of mt. hood. Even though Fritzs was five years older than his brother and me he always included us. I always looked up to him and my brother. He taught me many things but the ones I remember most was how to spit shine shoes like in the army which i still do to my dress wingtip shoes and also how to defend my self if someone was older and bigger than me. Many wonderful Thanksgiving 's at the kaiser home with auntie Millie's pumpkin pie and my favorite chocolate pie. I will really miss him and will cherish all the great memories. Geri and I will miss the trips that him and Jerri would take out here in Portland. I didn't make a mistake I married a Geri and my brother married a Jerry. I am glad I got to face time with him on his birthday. Kelly and Jason we loved him and your mom dearly. Our love and prayers are with you and your families.
Alvin & Geri
May 28, 2020
It was a pleasure knowing and working with you. Rest In Peace.
May 28, 2020
Fred was one of the smartest men I knew. He was always ready to help in any way possible. He was a great teacher who shared his experiences and knowledge easily. We met after we both retired from the Army, and found that we had many friends in common although we never crossed paths before retirement. Even then I felt like a lifelong friend. He helped me and some other friends work in 100 degree weather to build a fifteen-foot high retaining wall in my yard so we could add a swimming pool into our sloped yard. He was a strong helper and was one of the first to dive into the cooling water when we finished!
Fred and Jerri were two of our favorite friends in retirement and it’s only fitting that they should join together in Heaven so close together. They raised two fabulous children - whom I also saw at work and marveled at their smarts and great personalities. So happy they’re carrying on the Kaiser tradition of raising smart and accomplished children. I’m sad for all of them, and for all of our friends who won’t be able to visit Fred and Jerri, but we know they’re smiling together and watching us live our best lives! Rest In Peace, Fred.
May 28, 2020
Fred and Jerri served with us in Giessen from 1977-1978. Fred was the battalion executive officer and I was the Headquarters Battery Commander. We became great friends which lasted until his death.
Fred and I visited often on the phone and I was fortunate to have spoken with him just a week or so before he passed. I have so many great memories of our time together and I miss him.