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Robert W. Frelick

1920 - 2016 Obituary Condolences
Robert W. Frelick Obituary
Robert W. Frelick

AGE: 96 • Wilmington

Robert W. "Dr. Bob" Frelick, M.D., FACP, died September 1, 2016 at the age of 96. He received his medical degree as a Captain in the U.S. Army from Yale University in 1944 and devoted his life to providing medical care to his community. Dr. Frelick served in the expansion and improvement of cancer care and treatment in Delaware and throughout the country. He played a key role in the establishment of the Helen F. Graham Cancer Center.

Dr. Frelick was in private practice from 1950-82 with an office in Deerhurst and is still remembered for making house calls. He served in Wilmington as the Director of Nuclear Medicine (1952-70) and as a consultant in medical oncology in hospitals in Delaware and New Jersey. Into his 90's Dr. Bob continued to provide medical advice and assistance to family and friends, volunteered at the Claymont Clinic, and participated in grand rounds and medical meetings at Christiana Hospital and the Helen Graham Center.

From 1982-87, he was at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) where he was program director of the nation-wide Association of Community Cancer Centers (ACCC). He represented NCI as a member of the Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons. When he left NCI, he became Director of Chronic Diseases for the State of Delaware and medical director of the South Jersey Regional Cancer Center. He also served as a surveyor for the American College of Surgeons and traveled the country evaluating cancer programs at community hospitals.

He was a lecturer, assistant professor, and honorary clinical professor at the University of Delaware, Temple University, and Jefferson Medical College in Philadelphia. He published hundreds of papers over many years in a variety of professional journals. For several years, he contributed a column on health issues to the News Journal.

He was an active participant in numerous professional groups: including the American Medical Assn. (AMA), Medical Society of Delaware (president 1980-81), American Society of Clinical Oncology, and Association of Community Cancer Centers (president 1979-80, and Board of Trustees 1974-82), and the American School Health Association. He was a Fellow of the American College of Physicians (governor for Delaware from 1975-80). He served as a volunteer with CARE Medico in Kabul, Afghanistan in 1978 and later served on the CARE Executive Committee 1986-91. He also volunteered to provide medical assistance to earthquake victims in Honduras.

Besides his years of work in the field of medicine, Dr. Frelick served in a volunteer capacity with many national, state, and community organizations. He was active member of Westminster Presbyterian Church (deacon 1996-98). The Delmarva Boy Scout Council named him Citizen of the Year in 1981. He and his wife Jane sponsored an Afghan refugee family in the late 70's and remained close to them to this day. In his 60's, Dr. Bob became a licensed airplane pilot.

Dr Bob is survived by his wife, Jane Owen Hayden, of 72 years, five children (Susan Goekler of Rehoboth, Alcy Frelick of Mclean, VA; Sally O'Byrne of Wilmington; Bill Frelick of Columbia MD, and Scott Frelick of Wilmington); nine grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren.

A memorial service in celebration of his life will be held at Westminister Presbyterian Church on September 23, 2016 at 2pm.

In lieu of flowers please give donations to the Helen F. Graham Cancer Center 4701 Ogletown Stanton Rd, Newark, DE 19713.

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Published in The News Journal from Sept. 5 to Sept. 7, 2016
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