Dr. Richard Herbert Frei

Date of Birth

May 12, 1927

Date of Death

September 9, 2020

Dr. Richard Herbert Frei, D.D.S. May 12,1927 to Sept, 9, 2020 Married to Suzanne Dugal for 62 years . Children Richard, John, Elizabeth, and Katie. Eight Grandchildren, John J. ,Jeannie , Julia, Ricphard Dominic, Brian ,Colin, Shane, and Grade. Married late in life to Sheila Bryan. What a fascinating life you led! Born in North Hollywood, Calif, with lithe sister Beverly, you helped your father and mother, Bess and Herbert Frei raising exotic birds, and fruit trees. You created beautiful kites and balsa wood airplanes and you dreamed of flying. Another childhood pastime was swimming at the local plunge. You discovered the art of holding your breath underwater, this was a useful tool to gain the awe of bullies—and you gained that rapidly. Your love of the ocean’s waters and the mysteries of the sky would never leave you. Your lifetime quest for learning was nurtured by the great teachers at North Hollywood High School. Mathematics and science became a focus for you. You came to regard Mathematics and Calculus as the only universal and unchangeable language. Graduating in January, 1945, you won many honors and entered UCLA attending pre-dental classes. You Joined the U.S. Naval reserves in July 1945. During enlistment you were In V-5 Naval pilot training. The Navy then required all naval pilots to have two years of college before pilot training. The first year in the Navy was at Cal Tech. Second semester, 100 students were sent to Cal Tech to carry 19 months, heavy in mathematics. Third semester was back to USC. You were beginning to realize the dream of becoming a Navy pilot was not too be. The war was over! Along came Susie! One date and Suzanne Dugal was to be your future bride, right out of high school! Susie was anxious to support your quest to become a dentist. Back to UCLA for 2 years. Times were rough, you were turned down for USC dental school. Only way to get in was to get a high-grade point average at L.A. City College. You never worked so hard for good grades! You did it! You became a USC dental student! In June 1949, you and Susie were married! Without financial help from either family, Susie worked as a Doctors aide, and studies became your life. in the learning process, you became a Renaissance Man. You found interest in all realms of science. After graduation from USC Dental School, you interned for four years. Part of that time was spent hitch-hiking to Los Angeles County General Hospital gaining valuable experience. Susie gave you a son, Richard at this time. Armed With your D. D.S. Degree you and Susie moved to Hawaii, with first born, Richard, where you worked at a clinic for underprivileged children with cleft palate, doing facial macular surgery. These years took you into a life of free style diving, with your spear gun, caught fish served for dinner that night. Times were tough. Your future depended on your brain. An opportunity to be accepted at Washington University was offered and Susie encouraged you to try for it. Moving to Seattle, Washington, took courage. Still, out of three hundred applicants –ten were accepted. You were one of them! WOW! During your studies at Washington University, you and Dr. William Wise, Dr. Bertham Kraus, won first prize from the prestigious Milos Hellman Research group. “Heredity and the Cranial Facile Complex”, was an original study of identical triplets. It was later reprinted in the American Journal of Orthodontics. You were awarded MSC degree in Orthodontics. Now Susie yearned for Sunny California. No more Seattle fog for her! Soon son John was born. Time had come to open your dental practice in Covina. The office schedule would save weekends for family and sports activities. The staff was encouraged to run during the lunch hour, you along with them. At the age of 45, running had become an important part of your life. You left the track at Citrus College for the hills and trails of cross country running. You ran countless long marathons, steep hills, some as long as 18 miles. Though you won many ribbons, and medals, the real reward was the euphoric freedom from the bonds of earth, as you once described iElizabeth was born, first girl!. Life was good and you took your two boys into Scouting. Eleven stalwart fathers called “The Dirty Dozen” led 27 scouts to the tap of Mount Whitney, teaching survival skills and disallowed any whining! It took eight days and seven nights. They were well prepared on many weekends before this rigorous trip. A life progression none of them ever forgot! They all became Eagle Scouts! During your thirty eight years of children’s orthodontics, you constantly preached the virtues of good health, running, and never smoking! Soon, second daughter Katherine was born, and the family was complete! . Running the earth was not enough for you! Now flying the skies was added to your life. Your Cesna 185 accommodated Susie and all four kids. Flying the family and friends to football games, camping in Big Sur, and Baja, skiing in Tahoe—what a childhood they had. Waking young Richard up early one morning to get ready to go camping, Richard said “Oh No not again!”. They all leaned survival skills and safety methods during these flying experiences. So many other talents were part of your life. Many years of art classes at Mount Sac., with watercolor as your special love. Stained glass, and etching, was used as you built an underground wine cellar with your own stained glass lighted ceiling. You had an appreciation of fine wines, shared with your friends. Many dinner parties , with you as the chef, were held there. Beautiful music was part of the joy of your life. In Santa Barbara, going to The Garvin Theater for great concerts, The Granada and other stage presentation,’s or to Soho for spontaneous Jazz concerts, all lit up your eyes and delighted you. Running the earth—flying the skies,— now you were diving deep into the seas. Hawaii, California coasts, and Baja were hunting grounds for Eel, lobster and then a worlds record or two for you. First an award from the International Underwater Spearfishing Association for a wor;ld record 128 lb. Gulf Grouper! Wit your speargun, you broke the record of 76 Ibs! The natives of Baja were enjoying the meat for days! Not enough? You then speared another world record of a 620 lb. Maru I Tough getting it into the boat! Natives again celebrating with banquets on the beach! Hooray for Dooctor Frei! So many other talents. Remarkable thesis on the atmosphere, the moon, the stars, Greek philosophy, and even CLOG dancing to strengthen your legs for running! Building so many projects for the house, even stained-glass windows, there was a saying in the family, “It’s Frei built, meaning IT WILL NEVER FALL DOWN! Sadly Susie became crippled from a fall, and after months of loving care, passed on. Sixty two years of marriage was over. Her ashes were sprinkled in the garden she loved with her family around her. Your mourning and loneliness led you to seek old friends. During Susie’s illness, many phone calls were made between Susie and myself, with you on the line You wanted to share Susie’s paints and brushes with me. Susie and I both loved oil painting. Our mothers were friends who painted together. I spent many days and nights at Susie’s house, as a teen ager, 1 called her mom, Gracie, “MY second mom” A visit from you was warm and pleasant, remembering old times we shared with both Susie and my Freddy as our kids grew up. Freddy (my husband of 62 years) had passed on two years before. Both Susie and Freddy were gone and both of us alone, made renewing our old friendship easy. You were 85 years old and I was 81. We both had good health and years left to enjoy together. Almost eight years of love and sharing, building on to the house in Santa Barbara, were delightful years. The Lutheran church on Murdoc Rd. welcomed us together, and I was baptized there at age of82.. Three years later we were married in our beautiful garden we had nurtured together, with our two families in attendance. Our dear pastor, Paul Nelson, married us there! My heart breaks that you are in Heaven without me, my darling. I will love you forever and thank you for the gift of YOU. The wonderful, unique, amazing person you were, will never leave me. Ninety-three years of WOW


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