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Fred W. Soldwedel

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Fred W. Soldwedel Obituary
SOLDWEDEL, Fred Wilmot

Fred W. Soldwedel, respected attorney, recognized community leader, and beloved husband, father, grandfather, brother, and friend passed away on May 14, 2012, at home in Pasadena following a 24-year gracious-yet-tenacious battle with Parkinson's disease.

Fred was born at home on October 15, 1931, the oldest child of Fred R. and Elizabeth A. Soldwedel. He was raised in Pekin, Illinois, with sisters Diane and Linda amidst a large extended family of grandparents, aunts and uncle.

Following two years at Missouri Military Academy, Fred graduated from Pekin Community High School in 1949. He attended Northwestern University where he pledged Sigma Chi, joined the NROTC, played varsity football, and was active in student government. It was at Northwestern where he met his future wife Donna.

Upon graduation from Northwestern (BS) in 1953, Ensign Fred was sworn into the US Navy and served in the Pacific aboard the USS Manchester (CL83) until the close of the Korean Conflict. He remained in the US Navy Reserves for 30 years and retired with the rank of Captain.

Having fallen in love with California while in the Navy, Fred enrolled in law school at Stanford University and earned his LLB degree in 1958. Upon graduating, he moved to Pasadena with Donna and infant son Fred D. where he began his law career with the firm Boyle, Atwill and Mardian. In 1962 he earned his LLM degree at the University of Southern California. In 1963 he joined the law firm Parker, Berg, Lord where in later years he served as Managing Partner before leaving to practice "of counsel" for five years with his oldest son Fred D. before retiring.

Fred was a dedicated and respected community leader who provided effective, energetic leadership to numerous organizations. He served as president or chairman of 13 organizations in greater Pasadena, including, among others, the Bar Association, Chamber of Commerce, Navy League, Rotary Club, San Gabriel Valley Estate Planning Council, San Marino City Club, San Marino-South Pasadena YMCA, and Pasadena Tournament of Roses. His life can be best described by a remark made by Abraham Lincoln: " I like to see a man proud of the place where he lives. I like to see a man live so that his place will be proud of him".

A life-long sports enthusiast, Fred lettered in football at Northwestern and followed its team with great interest thereafter. He served as president of the Big Ten Club of Southern California and received its Man of the Year award in 1987. As a long-time member of the Tournament of Roses Football Committee, Fred helped the Rose Bowl Game retain its prominence as the "Granddaddy of Them All" and deeply cherished his friendships with university presidents, athletic directors, and faculty representatives across the county.

A man of quiet, deep personal faith, Fred served the Presbyterian Church in a myraid of ways at both the local Presbytery and Synod levels. He also served for many years as legal counsel and eventually the president of both Southern California Presbyterian Homes and Monte Vista Grove Homes. He was a deacon, an elder, and a foundation trustee for San Marino Community Church.

Of greatest note, Fred was a devoted family man who offered unconditional love and support to his entire family. Fred is survived by Donna Dawley Soldwedel, his wife of 56 years; their three children Fred Dawley (Cindy) Soldwedel, Kent David (Lori) Soldwedel, and Karen (Michael) McHugh; and their granddaughters Katherine Diane and Elizabeth Ann Soldwedel. One son, John Melvin Soldwedel, pre deceased him in 1965 at the age of two. In addition, he is survived by sisters Diane Soldwedel (Rita Davis) and Linda (Tom) Mitchell ; brother-in-law David A. Dawley; nephews John (Hana) Dawley, Kent (Emily) Mitchell, and Jeff (Molly) Mitchell; and niece Diane (Ron) Clem.

A memorial service will be held on May 24, 2012, at 4:00 P.M. at San Marino Community Church. In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to Monte Vista Grove Homes, 2889 San Pasqual Ave, Pasadena, Ca 91107; San Marino Community Church, 1750 Virginia Road, San Marino Ca 91108; or a . Cabot and Sons, Pasadena
Published in Pasadena Star-News from May 20 to May 21, 2012
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