G. John Friess

G. John Friess, passed away after a long illness, on May 8, at the age of seventy-nine. He was born to George A. and Beatrice E. Friess in Fort Wayne, Indiana Feb. 5, 1935. He attended St. Jude School and Central Catholic High School where he was named to the All-State Football Team, receiving letters in football, basketball and track, and was elected Vice President of his Senior Class. While attending the University of Michigan (Ann Arbor), he began his military service joining the Naval ROTC. He always remained a lifelong fan of the Michigan football team and a loyal alumnus of the University. After graduating in 1957 with a Bachelor of Business Administration, he was commissioned as an ensign in the U.S. Navy. He sailed regularly to ports in Japan and elsewhere in Asia gaining an interest in the art and culture of Japan. After his service, John returned to the University of Michigan, where he received a Master of Business Administration in 1960, then gaining a position with the brokerage firm Smith Barney. After leaving Wall Street, he chose to embark on a journey of discovery that included hitchhiking through Europe, the Middle East, and most remarkable for the time, all the way from Cairo to Capetown. In Europe he found work in communications technology and even played small parts in thirty-two Hollywood movies. After returning back to Fort Wayne, John became Professor of Business and Department Chair at St. Francis College. He was wooed to a position in marketing for a local architectural firm who expanded to Orlando, FL, where John played a major role in establishing the new office for Schenkel and Shultz branding its name in the region. John was also instrumental in establishing Schenkel and Shultz as one of Florida's premier school architectural firms, retiring from there in 1994. John was a man of exceptional imagination, versatility and intelligence. He leaves behind a sister and her children as well as countless friends, scattered across the country, who will never forget his warm smile and the pleasure of being in his company.

Published in Daytona Beach News-Journal on May 25, 2014