Joseph Nelson Fries

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Joseph Nelson Fries

CONCORD - Dr. Joseph Nelson Fries, 85, of Concord, passed away Friday, March 15, 2013, surrounded by his cherished family and his pastor at his home.

Married to Betty Barrier Fries in 1949, he became an active member of Saint James Lutheran Church serving as a teacher for the Cook Memorial Sunday School Class. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith. 2Timothy 4:7 Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. John 14:1.

Dr. Fries was born Aug. 16, 1927 in Rowan County, to the late Joseph Abram (Jack) Fries and Nellie Penley Fries. He graduated from Boyden High School, earned his bachelor's degree from Catawba College, completed his master's studies at Appalachian State University, and received his advanced administration certificate from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He was awarded his doctorate degree in education from Duke University. During World War II he voluntarily served in the United States Army, Btry. B 3rd BN. 1st Regt. R.T.C. final station, Okinawa, Japan.

Dr. Fries devoted over 39 years of his professional career to public education in North Carolina, having served as superintendent of Cabarrus County Schools from 1977-1988. He encouraged everyone to continue their education. Following his retirement, J.N. Fries Middle School was named to honor his commitment to the children of Cabarrus County. His uncle Channing Hilliard Fries, Jr. first hired him as a teacher and coach in Nashville. Moving to Concord he taught sixth grade at Clara Harris School. He served as the first principal of Beverly Hills School from 1954-1965.

He was a member of numerous professional organizations and boards. He was a member of the Cabarrus County Fair Board and the Rotary Club. He served as president of the North Carolina Association of School Administrators, the Concord Kiwanis Club, and the Cabarrus County Retired School Personnel of NCAE.

An avid golfer who loved all sports, Dr. Fries played American Legion Baseball in Salisbury and briefly for Catawba College. He enjoyed traveling and playing bridge with faithful friends. Having spent much of his childhood on his grandfather's farm, he always had a summer garden.

Married for over 63 years, he is survived by his darling wife and sweetheart Betty; brother, John Fries and wife Gail; daughters, Nancy Faggart, Jean Beasley and husband Fuller; granddaughter, Christine Lovelace and husband Nicolas; grandsons, Robert and Joseph Beasley; and several nephews, nieces, and cousins.

Visitation & Service: The family will receive friends at Wilkinson Funeral Home in Concord on Sunday, March 17, 2013 from 6-8 p.m. A funeral service will be held at Saint James Lutheran Church of Concord on Monday, March 18 at 2 p.m., officiated by Rev. Dan Warnes. Burial will follow at Oakwood Cemetery.

Memorials: Memorial gifts may be given to Saint James Lutheran Church, PO Box 684 Concord, NC 28026 or Hospice & Palliative Care of Cabarrus County, 5003 Hospice Lane, Kannapolis, NC 28081.

The family extends their special thanks to Home Instead care partners Aggie Eury, Robin Fink, and Mary Hardison.

On-line condolences may be left at www.wilkinsonfuneralhome.com. Wilkinson Funeral Home is handling arrangements for the Fries family.
Published in Salisbury Post on Mar. 17, 2013
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